Are you a cybersecurity company looking to grow your sales and revenue faster? In this episode, we dive into the keys to success with Steve Kazan, founder of Inner Onion. How can you stand out and improve your commitment to your partners? How can you navigate the partner process and achieve quarterly success? And what strategies can be employed to secure partnerships and investments? Tune in for valuable insights and actionable tips from an industry expert.
**In this conversation, we discuss:**
👉 The importance of commitment to partners and standing out
👉 Strategies for navigating the partner process and achieving success
👉 How to secure partnerships and investments for your cybersecurity company
**About our guest:**
Steve Kazan is the founder of Inner Onion, a cybersecurity consulting firm. With years of experience in the industry, Steve has a wealth of knowledge in sales and revenue growth strategies for cybersecurity startups. He shares his insights and expertise to help companies thrive in the competitive cybersecurity market.
Don't miss this episode of the Cybersecurity Startup Revenue Podcast, where we chat with Steve Kazan from Inner Onion. Learn how to improve commitment to partners, navigate the partner process, and secure partnerships and investments for your cybersecurity company. Tune in for valuable insights and actionable tips to accelerate your sales and revenue growth. Listen now!
Connect with 👉 Steve Kazan on LinkeIn
Learn more about 👉 Inner Onion
Book some time with Andrew Monaghan 👉 Schedule a Meeting
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Andrew Monaghan [00:00:00]:
Deciding to build a partner sales program is one thing and then actually doing it successfully is another. Today, Steve Kazan joins us to talk about three very different aspects of successfully building a partner program that actually delivers results. Steve is a longtime channel executive working for startups and scale-ups in tech and cyber and now has his own consulting business where he helps vendors get entry into the US. And helps them build long-lasting partner ecosystems. Don't go away. Welcome to the cybersecurity startup revenue podcast, where we help cybersecurity companies grow revenue faster. I am your host, Andrew Monahan. Our guest today is Steve Kazan, CEO and founder at Inner Onion. Steve, welcome to the podcast.
Steve Kazan [00:00:57]:
Thanks, Andrew. Thanks for having me.
Andrew Monaghan [00:00:59]:
Well, I'm looking forward to our conversation. This is the first conversation in a series for September 2023, talking about partnerships, thinking about how earlier stage or early stage companies in cybersecurity can go and get partners, win partners, do business through partners, be successful with partners, and what to cover in terms of partners. And this is the first of probably four or five interviews I'll do in September. You've got a long track record of working in technology and cybersecurity with partners both in scale-ups and startups and helping companies sign them up and develop them and the whole lot. So this is going to be an interesting conversation for the audience today.
Steve Kazan [00:01:45]:
Yeah, I'm excited to be here. I think it's going to be really interesting around how partners impact revenue and how they can help drive revenue.
Andrew Monaghan [00:01:54]:
But let's talk about the business side. You mentioned helping companies make some money, get some revenue through partners, and work with partners. For this discussion, for the audience, what Steve and I decided to do was let's frame up a fictitious company. We've called it Cyber Donut, Inc. and Cyber Donut, Inc. Is a series, a company. They've got about 20 customers, and they've got a small sales team of about four or five people in the US. And they're trying to figure out now, how do we go and keep expanding without maybe doubling or tripling our sales team immediately? Is there a route to go through partners and how do we go about doing that? And I think the first thing Steve, to think about know, rather than just kind of going and doing it, how do as a company think about making that change and making that move strategically so that they're ready to work with partners that are out there, what's the big things they should be thinking about?
Steve Kazan [00:02:52]:
Yeah, so, first of all, they incorporated in Delaware as Cyber Donut, Inc. Right, a Delaware company, because their investors required them to incorporate. And then they had some reference customers and their technology spread, and their founders found some good clients out there. And then the investors probably said, hey, cyber donut, at a board meeting, have you guys thought about using channel partners to spread your message out? And so I think, as you said, strategically or strategy, I think is the key concept to focus on. How does your particular product compare to other partner products out in the marketplace? Who are you competing with? What are your strengths, and what are your weaknesses? Sometimes or commonly? For me, clients that I've worked with, the challenge has been their product is not ready for the channel. It's too complex. So there are potentially some roadmap development issues that have to be answered or achieved before that product is partner-ready. In particular, cybersecurity products, if they're not multi-tenant, the managed service providers won't even take the phone call. I had a client coming over from Israel. We had a first couple of phone calls and the feedback they got immediately was to go get multi-tenancy and then come back. And they were successful. They did and they've generated revenue and they generated another round of investment. So that's quite a success story. The other thing I like to do is to actually put this down on paper. So pluses minuses strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of cyber donuts products and partner programs compared to the partner programs of the competitors. And in some cases, the competitive products will have zero or they'll have a weak partner program. And when I see that, that's like a huge opportunity. But other times you're competing against a huge incumbent and that's not uncommon either. And they have a big partner program. And so the question is, okay, so how do you compete with some big name, big brand out in the channel? And quite often there are cracks in their partner programs and so you go after those particular cracks.
Andrew Monaghan [00:05:09]:
Well, I think it's interesting, the lens, though, that you've brought to this, which is to put yourself in the shoes of the person running the partner and figure out how would they do business with you. Why would they do business with you? They might already, for example, be doing business with a couple of your competitors. Maybe it's a small or maybe it's a large, whatever it might be, and you're trying to figure out, well, do we displace them or are they going to sell something alongside them? And having that whole perspective of they've got 3400 companies to do business with as a partner, which ones do you choose and how do you make yourself attractive for them?
Steve Kazan [00:05:44]:
Yeah, so you're going in and having that initial conversation, and maybe you know that partner person personally. Maybe you have a prior relationship with it or maybe they're a complete stranger and so you then have to sit in their shoes and say they're going to make an investment in us of time and money. How am I going to repay that investment? And that's kind of the way to think about it with a lot of these people, particularly the owners. If you're sitting down across from an owner, that owner could invest in any one of those 3000, 405,000 different technologies, why would they invest in you over the others? And so the pitch to them is almost an investment pitch. Right here is why this particular investment is going to pay off. It's got a large team, it's got the right people on our board, we've got the right investors. This is going to be a juggernaut. We've got successful clients. That's going to be that pitch to that not just the owner, but people across that company. You're going to make money. We're going to have a long-term committed relationship here. I brought the ring. We're going to get married here and be successful.
Andrew Monaghan [00:06:57]:
And do people generally want to have just one vendor in each submarket or don't get so worked up about that?
Steve Kazan [00:07:06]:
Yeah, well, so that's where some of the competition comes in. So you can walk into a place that's got your direct competitor signed up. But if their partner program, enablement, lead generation, cooperation, collaboration, and sales team are not working effectively with that partner, that partner may say, we're not happy with that other vendor. We'll give you guys a try. And I've had situations where that's all I needed, that's all I needed to hear was, you're not happy with that particular vendor? Great. Give us a try, we'll hand you a lead, we'll sell it to you. That deal closes and the partner is like, great, we've got a good vendor in this space, and let's move forward.
Andrew Monaghan [00:07:49]:
One of the things I hear a bit about is companies, and partners who are concerned that some new technologies such as cyber donuts might cannibalize their existing revenue stream from larger companies that have been working with for ten years, let's say. Is that something that happens quite a lot? And if so, how do you deal with that?
Steve Kazan [00:08:09]:
The concern happens a lot, but in actuality, I haven't seen that happen very much. Most often what ends up happening is that the total pie gets bigger. So there's a lot of overlap in all these various cybersecurity products. But if your target market, your market niche is a little different, then you can secure some incremental revenue for that partner. Yes, I've run into situations with clients where they say, I've already got three of those, I don't need another one. And those are pretty quick conversations. The other way to slice this is you look at the big players in the cybersecurity space that everybody knows, right, the four or five huge players. And sometimes you can crack into them, but it takes a lot of work and a lot of handholding, and other times they've put up barriers, right? You have to fill out this form. You have to go to our lab. You got to commit money to us if it's one of the big vendors. And so sometimes the smarter play is to find a different level of partner or a different type of partner. So as an example, I have a client over in Israel, and they were looking at Virtual CISOs as a channel. And so what we did with them was we went out and we engaged all these Virtual CISOs and we said, here is a product that can help you do your job better. And they adjusted the product, they added more features, and then they took that Virtual CISO group and then they went over to the MSPs and said, if you want to create a Virtual CISO service, here is the product that you can use. And those guys have been doing really well getting MSPs to pay attention to them.
Andrew Monaghan [00:09:59]:
I like that a lot, actually, because we talk so much about the 3400 vendors, right? But the partners are a growing community as well. It's been growing a lot in the last ten years, and there are all different flavors of partners. I think we get a little bit too focused on straight, resale partners when there's a whole bunch of different people out there that might have different relevance for us.
Steve Kazan [00:10:20]:
Yeah, I mean, in the old days, there were tens of thousands and there were just VARs, right? You're just a reseller, and then you're a value-added reseller. And then as you move more services now most of those bars have become more like MSPs. But there are consultants these days. There are agents that could be valuable. There are influencers like these Virtual CISOs who carry with them weight, right? They go into a client and they say, hey, I'll do your compliance for you. I'll work with your internal team. And by the way, here are a couple of products you should look at because I think they're a good fit for you. So they really carry that influence with them. So if they like you, whether or not they're compensated for that sale or not, sometimes they'll say, no, I'm a consultant. I'm not going to get a commission on this. I just want a good product that will solve a problem for my clients. That really helps because the door is open. They've opened the door for you.
Andrew Monaghan [00:11:24]:
Well, now that we've zeroed in on who we want to do some business with, how do we get ready? What should Cyber Donut be doing internally to say, yeah, we're going to start building this so that they actually like what we're doing and we're ready to do business with them?
Steve Kazan [00:11:39]:
Yeah. So our friends at Cyber Donut, need to be committed, right? And you should know that from the get-go. So the board needs to be committed, the senior execs need to be committed, the sales leaders need to be committed, and the sales reps need to be committed. Right. So you're plowing the field so that you can plant seeds and have the vegetables grow. The next sort of steps or stages of things to do are creating all the tools that you're going to need. So you're going to need training, you're going to need sales tools, you're going to need battle cards, and you're going to need playbooks, right, so that you can train your partners and they can understand your products and how to go to market. And to me, that's a very competitive activity, because you want your materials to outshine all your competitors, right? If you show up and you've got some ratty little or half-baked products, then you just look bad, and you don't establish that credibility. You don't establish that confidence. So that sort of stuff may sound a little trivial, but it's really important to get it right.
Andrew Monaghan [00:12:45]:
I think one of the things is the balance, right? Because I've heard the phrase you want to train your partners as if they were your own salespeople, right? And you don't get the time to do that, right? I remember years ago, I was at a company I wouldn't say which one. I was at a company, and we were told to go train the partner, right? And we said, okay, well, we're going to train you like you're one of ours. We're going to ask you to come in for a couple of days of boot camp and all that sort of stuff. And I remember the guy lit to me, and he says, you know, we do $3 billion a year with Cisco, and they get a lunch learn twice a month. You're asking me for two days of the sales team. It's never going to happen. And I always thought about that, saying, well, you need to have a version of your internal materials, which is the right. It's not about their ability to learn. It's the ability to take this in from you plus 15 or 20 other vendors. You got to do it in a manner that's going to be hard-hitting and to the point, and it's going to enable them to have a quick conversation, right? And there's a balance there about how you get that depth, right?
Steve Kazan [00:13:50]:
Yeah. And that grows over time. So initially, you'll show up, you'll say, here's a sandwich. And some of the reps will basically tell you what you heard, which is I'll bring you the lead, I'll open you to the door, and then the rest of the work, you guys got to do the rest of that work, because I'm never going to learn your product as well as I need to learn it. And maybe it's too complicated, kidded, or maybe not. One trick on that is to build up a champion within the company who's the go-to person to answer questions so he or she's on the inside. And I've used that strategy four or five times, and it's worked really well because they don't have to reach out to me, although they could. They can reach out to the cyber donut sales engineer, who understands the facts and figures of that particular product. So that's one way to do it. And then the other way is you get a win. And then you take that win and you just dangle it in front of all the reps and make sure that those other reps know that you, as a vendor, supported them, provided the lead, gave them what they needed to close the deal. And, oh, by the way, your customer is happier now and stickier now because you brought this vendor in.
Andrew Monaghan [00:15:02]:
And just as importantly, I would say you did what you said you were going to do, right? You didn't try and take the deal away at the last minute. You didn't try and cut their margin. You said, look, this is how we're going to do business. And you went ahead and did it.
Steve Kazan [00:15:13]:
Oh God. Just horror stories of deals on the last day of the quarter where the direct reps basically just went to the customer and just said, Buy it through us, and let's cut this partner out. Yeah, I worked for a big database company in the Bay Area and we had reps that did that and it was a nightmare to work with partners.
Andrew Monaghan [00:15:35]:
Yeah, I think the advantage of being at a startup though is that you're a smaller tight-knit group as a sales team. So hopefully you've said that, you said you got the groundwork and you've all agreed you're going to go through the channel in these deals and therefore you need leadership that says, no, we're not taking anything direct, we're not going to go back in our word. We'll do as we said we said we would do.
Steve Kazan [00:15:53]:
Yeah. The flip side of that, though, is that when you get down to the end of a quarter and the president has committed to the board that a particular deal is going to close, and the president of the company or the VP of Sales has to bring that deal know before the end of the quarter. Sometimes they're the ones who know going back on the commitment. But as a channel person, it's my job at Cyberdona to make that transaction happen as smoothly and fast as possible. And so one way to do that is through those marketplaces, right? So as you're putting your whole channel strategy together, make sure that you have a marketplace where people can transact your business very quickly and easily.
Andrew Monaghan [00:16:38]:
And you mentioned the training that has to be done by the partner sales team. Get the right materials so that we look like we know what we're doing and it looks like it's squared away and helps them. What else is part of the enablement step in this?
Steve Kazan [00:16:53]:
So one thing I think people overlook is kind of the branding. So what we do is we use LinkedIn as a branding tool and we'll take our vendors and they will reach out to their partners. And so you can create a post with your partner, promote that post, promote those people that you're working with, and then they get some visibility, they see some success, they see more branding. And that actually has been a positive because the name of your company is now spread further across their organization and just across the general marketplace. Right. And so a couple of my clients who have come in from Israel have used LinkedIn really, really well to broadcast themselves. These are small companies. These are a handful of people. And on LinkedIn, they look like they're corporate. They look like they're 500 people. But they've got a good product and a good message and that's important for the partner.
Andrew Monaghan [00:17:52]:
Right. They're going to see that again and again.
Steve Kazan [00:17:54]:
Is that what you're saying? Yeah. You're branding to that partner, right? And that partner sees your name and then it's clicking in the heads of the management and the sales team and they see your success and they see you closed a client or they see you signed a deal or a partnership. So all of those things. And these days it can be very targeted. You can pick the people you want and send your message right to those individuals.
Andrew Monaghan [00:18:18]:
I really like that, actually, because it must be hard if you're even a seller at a partner, never mind a leadership team, right, to keep track of exactly which companies do what right. They've got a continuous flow of people wanting to come talk to them, some of whom they'll decide to do business with. And maybe some will be like full partners, maybe some will be, well, we got a couple of transactions to run through you. There's some sort of level in between there. And unless you're always with them and in front of them and making sure they know you're there, it must be very easy for them to almost forget about you and exactly what you did.
Steve Kazan [00:18:54]:
Yeah. So part of the plan, right, as my channel manager plan for Cyber Donuts, is to go to my boss and say, here are my top focus partners. I'm going to touch these guys at least once a week. And maybe the touch is just an email. Maybe the touch is sending them some collateral but consistency in that touch and then getting on the know, knock on the door. And a week in Denver and a week in Arizona and a week in Seattle and a week in Chicago and a week in you know, we stopped doing that during COVID and everyone's now doing Zoom calls. But being committed and being face to face, it's appreciated. It adds value. It shows commitment. We went up to Alaska, of all places, and we did it in the winter and we showed up and people were impressed. They said, you guys are committed. You're up here in the winter. And we said, Heck yes, we're committed. It's January and it's dark at 10:00 A.m. And 04:00 p.m., but we want to sell you some software. Yeah.
Andrew Monaghan [00:19:53]:
It seems to me in a sea of companies they say they're committed, but perhaps not quite as committed as they should be. Doing things to stand out, and improve your commitment to maybe a smaller number of partners is what's going to really make the difference for you. I remember back in the day, Beckham was actually selling in conjunction with a channel account manager and a partner themselves. I was always at the end of the quarter, I was always truly thankful when that person knew everyone inside and out at that partner could make the call to get the right PO pushed through past various things, and procedures to get done and booked in time where they just were on the speed dial almost of the right people at the partner. And I think it's something we underestimate actually a little bit about smoothing that whole process and knowing it inside out at each partner means sometimes being the success of a quarter against the absolute drop of a quarter as well.
Steve Kazan [00:20:56]:
The success I felt was when a sales rep at my company would come to me and say, I went and visited those guys because they're in my local town and those guys are really good, they're a great partner. They're committed the understanding our product. And to me, that was tremendous validation. And then we took that sales rep at the company and we said to all the other sales reps, look, you too could be closing business and making blown quota by using your partners, leveraging your partners effectively. Yeah, I love that.
Andrew Monaghan [00:21:32]:
So Steve, let's learn a little bit more about you. I've got 35 questions here on my list. I'm not going to ask you 35, I'm going to ask you to pick three numbers between one and 35 and I'll read out the corresponding question.
Steve Kazan [00:21:44]:
All right. 618 and 34.
Andrew Monaghan [00:21:48]:
Okay, 618, 34 sales. How did you first make money as a kid?
Steve Kazan [00:21:54]:
I had a paper route when I was eleven, I guess ten. I would put the bags on my bike and ride around town and then throw the paper on people's porches. And then back in that day, you'd have to knock on their door and collect $3 from each client and yeah, I did that. And then after I did that I was a gardener and I did brush clearing and a lot of that stuff. Actually, I did that up through high school. So that was my way. I made money.
Andrew Monaghan [00:22:23]:
It's fascinating the number of people I talked to on this podcast. That question and some sort of yard work in the neighborhood was how they went out there hustled they got some clients, they did some work, hard work and they earned some money and it paid for various things as they're growing up as teenagers. So it's fascinating the correlation between people who are super successful and wanting to go and do something different in this world. They started off by doing things like paper rides and gardening.
Steve Kazan [00:22:50]:
Yeah, start early and work hard.
Andrew Monaghan [00:22:52]:
Yeah, especially paper runs. Right. You're up before the crack of dawn, usually doing paper runs.
Steve Kazan [00:22:57]:
Well, so mine was the afternoon paper, but it was rain and sleet and Sundays and the whole bit. So, yeah, it was a lot of work, but it made some money, and I bought a bicycle. That was my reward to myself was I bought a spiffy new ten-speed bicycle.
Andrew Monaghan [00:23:13]:
Do you remember the brand and the color?
Steve Kazan [00:23:15]:
It was brown, and it was a Raleigh.
Andrew Monaghan [00:23:17]:
Raleigh. There you go. All right. Number 18 was tea or coffee.
Steve Kazan [00:23:23]:
Coffee. Decaf coffee every day.
Andrew Monaghan [00:23:26]:
Oh, you're on decaf as well now?
Steve Kazan [00:23:27]:
Yeah, I've been on decaf for 20 years, and I go to a place called Three B's Coffee downtown San Mateo, and there's a group of us that hang out every morning and have our coffee or tea together down there. So it's a nice little community that's awesome.
Andrew Monaghan [00:23:43]:
Listeners of the podcast will know that. I got off caffeine coffee end of last year. I was getting the withdrawals. I was getting the really bad headaches that people get sometimes, and I've been decaf ever since. So far, so good for me. And then the final one you had was 34. So 34 is what's your favorite city in the world to visit?
Steve Kazan [00:24:10]:
There are several that I really like. My wife and I went nine months through Asia, so we went to every major city, backpacking through Asia. We've backpacked through Europe. I guess if I had to choose one for a night or two out, I'd say Paris and rent a bicycle and get a couple of great meals, breakfast, lunch, and dinner in Paris.
Andrew Monaghan [00:24:32]:
What's your favorite city in Asia?
Steve Kazan [00:24:34]:
My favorite city in Asia, there were some small towns that we went to. One called Dharm Sales up in the mountains, just a beautiful view. We went to a place called Ladakh, which is in the Tibetan culture. And it was just, you know, lots of different cultures everywhere we went, so it's just very different and hard to compare. We spent time in Hong Kong. We spent time in Australia as well. And Adelaide, I guess, would be my favorite Australian city. Not the biggest, but I thought it was really pretty there.
Andrew Monaghan [00:25:06]:
Yeah, there are some great spots in Asia that I think people either don't know about or just haven't found the time to get over there from the US. Anyway, go visit. I was lucky enough when I was super young, even though I was born and bred in Scotland. We actually lived in Hong Kong for a few years as I was a little bit older. And we got kind of fond memories of living in Hong Kong back in the day, back when it was a British colony before the Handover in 97. So it's changed a lot since then.
Steve Kazan [00:25:33]:
Well, our last trip was to Scotland, and we went to Edinburgh and St. Andrews and the Isle of Sky and I must say, the Isle of Sky was just stunning.
Andrew Monaghan [00:25:42]:
What time of year did you go?
Steve Kazan [00:25:44]:
September. Early September. Okay.
Andrew Monaghan [00:25:46]:
So yeah, not winter yet, but still hanging on to summer.
Steve Kazan [00:25:51]:
Usually, by that, it was we hit the weather, right? A few days of rain, of course, but we had our share of sunshine, which was great. Yeah.
Andrew Monaghan [00:26:00]:
My teenage years were growing up in Edinburgh, so I know I have fond, and that's where my heart is. Many times when I think about home is where your heart is.
Steve Kazan [00:26:09]:
Right. That's a nice city.
Andrew Monaghan [00:26:10]:
Yeah. I was back there in early July this year and hope to be able to get back out in November. My mom still lives just outside Edinburgh, so I try and get back as much as I can. Let's go slightly different direction. Let's talk about what else we can help a partner do around just getting a margin on selling a product. Good partners are thinking about services, revenue, usually higher margins than what you get from a product, and other things as well. So how should Cyber Donut be thinking about making themselves attractive for ancillary-type products?
Steve Kazan [00:26:49]:
Yeah, so one of the things that you need to do pretty early on is to figure out, okay, so what services can you generate with Cyber Donut yes. Implementation. Okay, that's fine. But are there services that are related? So are there compliance services that are related? Are there groups within the company that you could sell the services to? So these days, the cybersecurity team, maybe the target client, they may be the ideal user, or the ideal customer, but it might be the marketing head of marketing the person that runs the website the engineering team, or the DevOps team. We had a client a year ago that sold to the DevOps team. So we spent a lot of time targeting DevOps people, targeting DevOps messages, working with partners to say, do you have a DevOps practice? And a lot of them said, no, we don't have a DevOps practice. But some of them said, hey, we could get into that DevOps space, sell DevOps tools because we're selling to the CIO, and the CIO can introduce us over to the VP of Engineering. And then, boom, we've just doubled our footprint within that client. And all because we opened the door with a cybersecurity tool related to engineering, software engineering that they really needed. They were vulnerable, and we could show that to them, so they needed to bring in that DevOps security product. Now, on the security side, what I've done in the past is you create a service for them and you say, here's a small and a medium and a large, and here are the various parts of the service that you're offering to your clients. And here's what you're charging. You're charging a small, a medium, and a large price. And that fits in with kind of the model that some managed. Service providers have, right? They have offerings. They make it really simple. You put it on a single sheet of paper, and they're able to then take that piece of paper and show it to their clients and say, We'll give you Cyber insurance protection at this price with these three different levels. And of course, you always want to sell up to the top level. So the first one is just to get them in. The middle one is just kind of a teaser. And then the larger one is where you're locking people in.
Andrew Monaghan [00:29:08]:
So you're saying the Cyber donut themselves should take charge of that conversation and say, We don't want to deliver this ourselves, but we got some ideas about services that you could actually go deliver around what we've learned over the last couple of years of doing this.
Steve Kazan [00:29:22]:
Yeah, so some of these managed service providers have actual product managers who are creating products. And so as a partner person, my job function was to put on my product management hat and create a product that was sold as a service. But it had all the bits and pieces of a product. It had the functions, it had the features, it had the pricing, it had discounts, and the whole sort of product management work. And so one of the companies I was at had a 100-page playbook that was probably too long, of course, that no one was going to read. But for every little detail for a product manager, it told them, here's how to structure your service, and here's how much money you can make from your service. So, if nothing else, the partners that we went to, the managed service providers, and the MSSPs, were impressed. They were like, wow, you guys have done your homework. You're detail-oriented, you're focused, and you're helping us get to where we need to go, which is to grow our services portfolio. So all that stuff is appreciated.
Andrew Monaghan [00:30:26]:
I think it shows you understand the business as well. You're not so myopic that you say, oh, you get a $3,000 jump start on the back of selling some licenses. Right. You're talking about a proper revenue stream. I remember back in the day this is a long time ago, I'm showing my age a little bit, but ArcSite back in the early 2000s did a really good job of partnering with the probably Big Five, as it was at the time. The big SIS and consulting companies would drive a lot of service dollars on the back of an implementation or an instance of ArcSight going into these big companies. And sure, some of it was implementation, but it got very strategic as well. And three to one was the number that you heard a lot. For every dollar of license that was sold, it drove $3 of services for the big companies.
Steve Kazan [00:31:15]:
Yeah. So potentially, you can generate services for another client, another product. So we had a product that we went in and we said, here's an AI product that can suck all this information out of your network and give you visibility. But by the way, you want to connect it to ServiceNow. Right. And when you connect it to ServiceNow, you're generating service revenue for your ServiceNow team that really wants more service revenue. So, boom, all of a sudden, the ServiceNow team is pulling for us, saying, come on, come on in. We need you to generate more consulting dollars for us.
Andrew Monaghan [00:31:50]:
And then, in that case, everyone wins. And I would imagine you become more sticky as well, right?
Steve Kazan [00:31:55]:
Yeah. Once you're connected, once you've built in, once the plumbing is connected, right, the pipes, then it's hard to get you out, hard to replace you, right? The other thing that pops up a lot is the consolidation. So you go into a client. The client's got five tools, ten tools, and 15 tools. If your particular product can consolidate those, then there are services that get created in that consolidation. So a project gets generated. Yeah. Three to one, two to one, four, five to one in terms of services dollars to actual product dollars.
Andrew Monaghan [00:32:31]:
So, Steve, we talked about three different areas. The strategic approach to being relevant for partners, the more tactical, how you get ready to go do business with them so they actually see you've got your shit together. The third one was thinking beyond just services such as jumpstart services or whatever, but thinking, how can they generate some money that you become strategic to them. Seems like that's three areas that would get cyber donuts along the way in making a successful program.
Steve Kazan [00:33:01]:
Yeah. And you sit down on day one and you put your 30, 60, 90-day plan together and you tell management and you tell your sales team partners, here's what we're going to do, here's how we're going to do it. Those are your commits. You're going to live up to your commitments. And so even the small companies that have very few people, very few resources, not much in terms of marketing dollars, can do their homework, can be strategic, can produce good collateral and good impressive support and marketing. And they can grab the attention, grab the leads, grab the mind, share so.
Andrew Monaghan [00:33:40]:
It can be done and has been done many times. Steve, I've enjoyed the conversation. If someone else wants to get in touch with you and talk more and get some advice from you, what's the best way to do that?
Steve Kazan [00:33:50]:
My email is Steve Kazan@interunion.com, but I'm on LinkedIn every day, so I'm happy to connect with more and more folks on LinkedIn and talk partners and talk cybersecurity and talk AI and ecosystems and all kinds of stuff that are on the cutting edge of where the business is going. So, Andrew, thank you so much. This was fun. I enjoyed it.
Andrew Monaghan [00:34:15]:
Thanks for joining us, and bringing some insight into this area. As I said, September is a month of different conversations around the whole partner idea and how to go about doing that. So I appreciate you leading us off with an insightful way to think about that. And we've got some more conversations coming the rest of the month for the listeners from both partners, but also from the vendor side as well. And it's going to be interesting to see the different perspectives. But for now, thanks for joining us, and look forward to chatting with you next time.
Steve Kazan [00:34:44]:
Thank you, Andrew. Take care.