In an effort to help boost its midmarket security business, McAfee Inc. has launched the McAfee SMB Specialization, a new category within the McAfee Security Alliance program for McAfee’s channel partners, including resellers and solution providers.
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Partners will receive 15 to 30 points of additional margin for sales to SMB customers.
Partners who enroll as SMB specialists can expect a number of benefits. Craig Parrish, vice president of SMB sales at Santa Clara, Calif.-based McAfee, said partners will receive 15 to 30 points of additional margin for sales to SMB customers. Through McAfee’s Partner Acceleration Resource Center (PARC) Web portal, SMB specialists will have access to a variety of resources for selling and supporting SMB accounts.
In addition, deal registration will be streamlined. The prior deal registration process required extensive forms and internal sign off, which often took 48 to 72 hours. If the opportunity was small, partners were unable to register the deal at all. With the new specialization, McAfee has set an SLA of 4 hours for SMB deal registration, and has been exceeding that goal, Parrish noted. No special quoting is required; partners are simply given a promotional code to move forward with the deal.
The SMB Specialization, announced June 14, is the only specialization in the McAfee partner program. According to Parrish, “Most of our partners already sell into SMB, so we expect early adoption to be extremely high.”
To become an SMB specialist, a reseller or solution provider need only be a current member of the McAfee Security Alliance; there are no tests, certifications or other requirements for the specialization. McAfee partners may simply fill out a form indicating their interest in becoming an SMB specialist.
There are more than 10,000 firms in the McAfee partner program worldwide, with approximately 8,000 in the U.S. It defines an SMB customer as an enterprise with fewer than 250 employees.
The emphasis on SMB customers is part of McAfee’s overall strategic focus this year. “McAfee has had great success in the enterprise and consumer space,” Parrish said. “Quite frankly, we haven’t really focused our attention on SMB.”
Parrish stated that McAfee has built a large set of resources for the channel to engage with SMB customers. It has dedicated 60 people to supporting this specialization program. “We are also collaborating with our internal teams, including marketing and product teams, to make sure we are delivering the right solutions for SMBs.”