Polycom's New Strategy to Beat Cisco, Tandberg

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print

Polycom's new sales chief is planning a high-touch approach to customers combined with a selective distribution and channel partner program. His goal is to have Polycom dominate video conferencing and strengthen the company's hand against rivals Cisco and Tandberg.

Polycom channel partners are likely to see the telepresence, video and voice communications vendor up its game when it comes to channel sales and marketing in the months ahead.

That’s because the company has named a former Tandberg CEO and Cisco executive as its executive vice president of global field operations. Andrew Miller says that Polycom may have lost market share when it comes to the video market, as Cisco has entered the space and other players have made big moves in that area, gaining share.

But watch out, he says. Polycom has a strong portfolio of products and technologies to take to channel partners and customers, and he plans to build on that.

"What I think I can add and that will be important to the company is that sales and marketing focus," he says.

But before he even does that, Miller says, he plans to establish a clear go-to-market strategy around high-touch customer relationships and selective distribution.

"That means we have a sales force responsible for driving customer intimacy and relationships with Polycom, but that products are fulfilled through a close-knit, selective channel community," he says. His job will be to make sure that both that high-touch sales force and Polycom’s channel partners can live within an ecosystem together with everyone putting customer satisfaction first, he adds.

Finally, Miller says he will make sure Polycom has the right product and technology sets to lead the environment over Cisco and Tandberg.

"Cisco does more than unified communications, so we need to prove we are best in breed there," Miller says. "If we do that, we can compete effectively with a Cisco who does many things."

In his new role leading the global sales operation at Polycom, Miller will be responsible for the entire sales force and channel program.

Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com

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