Other recent additions to Ingram’s IoT initiative include a business intelligence campaign designed to help partners spot opportunities among their existing clients.
“We drop ship to all of their end users anyway, and we’ve classified them such that we can tell which end users are in the healthcare space, are in the hospitality space, the public sector space,” Hembree says. From there, it’s a small further step to point out that one of those users has multiple commercial refrigeration units that need continuous temperature tracking, he continues. Ingram provides guidance on how to sell services like that as well.
“It’s all about the discovery, asking the right questions, really digging in and getting them to think differently about how technology can solve those problems,” Hembree explains. “IoT is a business sale, not a technology sale.”
It’s also a market no one integrator can tackle all alone. “With IoT, it’s all about the partnerships,” Hembree says. “You could be leveraging up to 15 different partnerships, sometimes 20 different partnerships, for a single IoT project.”
To help companies with complementary skills locate and collaborate with one another, Ingram is assembling a database of providers with specific certifications and expertise. “If we need somebody to do the analytics or build out custom dashboards, we have that guy,” Hembree says.
Coming on September 4th and 5th, he continues, is Ingram’s first IoT-specific conference. The format is designed to provide concrete, hands-on instruction rather than the usual roadmap and vision keynotes.
“We’re going to do an immersive environment where we’re demonstrating live solutions, real kits and gear, and no vaporware whatsoever,” Hembree says. “It’s all going to be practical solutions, some that we’re developing with other big-name companies.”