How do you generate interest in a manufacturer’s product offerings and create a robust channel marketing program that strengthens the ability of partners to sell to the public sector?
- ENC was selected as the public sector marketing agency for NetApp — a premier data storage manufacturer with more than 11,000 employees worldwide — in early 2011. Working with NetApp’s sales, marketing and channel teams, ENC creates awareness and communicates NetApp’s specific relevance with federal government audiences. ENC has helped NetApp federalize its messaging and develop lead-nurture campaigns, as well as worked on new product launches, such as the FAS 2000 series of storage for mid-sized agencies. Additionally, ENC has worked with NetApp to increase its presence in the federal marketplace from the ground up through one-on-one work with partner resellers.
- Much of the success of large manufacturers like NetApp comes from entrepreneurial channel partner value-added resellers (VARs) who re-sell products to customers. That’s why when NetApp and its distributors needed a strategy to leverage marketing development funds (MDF) for channel partners, ENC developed and implemented a strategic and measurable communications plan that was carefully developed to help several of these partners generate awareness and leads. Because NetApp’s corporate office provides numerous materials that could be adapted by ENC for the federal market, their limited budgets could be spent on engaging customers instead of developing a lot of communications assets from scratch.
- Because many of NetApp’s partners are smaller, with limited MDF budgets, ENC developed an integrated awareness program (broadcast media, events, collateral materials and online marketing) that could be customized, at minimal cost, for each partner. Partners benefitted from a shared cost, multi-channel marketing program. And the program was deployed prior to the government’s busy season so partners would benefit from increased mindshare when agencies were ready to spend end-of-year funds.
- Stylistically rendered illustrations are an essential component of NetApp’s brand identity. For commercial markets, these illustrations are highly distinctive. However, NetApp public sector executives expressed concerns that they were too whimsical for agencies with life or death missions. Executives were also concerned that that stylizing planes, ships and vehicles might inadvertently communicate a lack of familiarity with DoD agencies and their challenges. ENC worked with NetApp’s marketing team to develop a library of illustrations that maintained consistency with the corporate brand, yet specifically and realistically addressed the public sector market.
- SwishData is one of NetApp’s Star Partners that has benefitted from additional marketing support. ENC collaborated with SwishData executives to rebrand the company to drive increased credibility and awareness through refined messaging, a new logo and tagline, and social media outreach planning, execution and monitoring. ENC developed new website content, for which analytics are captured and reported on regularly. Fresh collateral and proactive public relations have helped SwishData position itself as a thought leader in the public sector IT realm.
- Effective channel marketing programs, coupled with credible partners armed with the right tools for public sector marketing, help manufacturers like NetApp extend their reach and multiply their results. ENC helped NetApp and its partners make its strategic messages relevant and meaningful to the public sector and improved sales effectiveness.
- Technology companies who provide products and services to the public sector repeatedly come to ENC as their strategic communication agency of choice because of its dependability, and history with the government IT marketplace. ENC’s strategists speak bits and bytes and comprehend virtualization and big data. ENC is uniquely positioned as the most-experienced in the market to communicate the value and differentiators of technologies to government audiences. This experience reduces the risk of messages being overlooked and increases the potential of an organization to grow its business.