Vince Crisler: Wired Up & Fired Up for SaaS Channel Transformation
What can you learn from an Air Force veteran who worked for the Pentagon, Homeland Security, and the White House? Quite a lot I found out in this week’s episode with Vince Crisler. Vince is the founder and CEO of Dark Cubed, a cyber security SaaS company. Chris successful navigated two major transformations. First, he converted his product from an on-premise appliance to Software-as-a-Service, which is not easy for any vendor. But that wasn’t enough. Chris wanted more organizations to have access to his SaaS offering. So he tackled a second transformation, moving sales from an all-direct model to virtually 100% channel via MSPs. You’ll learn about the top security threats organizations, including MSPs face today, how he “swallowed the SaaS fish”, and his creative approach to building a channel..KEY TAKEAWAYS 1. The On-Premise to SaaS Transformation
- Dark Cubed started as an appliance, but there were multiple challenges with this model including product maintenance and support, hardware costs, price points that we’re getting too high for small and mid-sized businesses
- Pivoting to the SaaS model is a tough transition. But in the end, it’s worth it. Margins are up. Dark Cubed can be up and running on a network in 10 minutes without having to ship hardware or configure anything. It completely transformed their business.
- The SaaS transformation, “swallowing the fish” took Vince about a year and a half. They had to reconfigure the architecture and figure out how to sell SaaS to the lower and upper ends of the SMB market.
- Vince took a data-driven approach to researching the best channel and channel strategy for Dark Cubed
- Reddit groups can be a great tool for partner recruiting and engagement. You’ll get blunt feedback on Reddit, not likes and shares that make you feel good.
- Provide valuable content, not marketing fluff, to your partners. Vince found publishing reports like their managed service provider report worth a lot more than advertising in many ways.
It's pretty much accepted that a breach is going to happen. The question is, how do you handle it? How do you communicate? How do you inspire trust and confidence when that bad event does occur? @VinceCrisler
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It was a tough transition. But in the end, it's been worth it. Margins are up. We can be running on a network in 10 minutes without having to ship or configure anything. It's completely transformed the business. @VinceCrisler
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The thing I love about Reddit is people are blunt, and you know, you go in there and you can be crucified and people don't mind calling you out. @VinceCrisler
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- Find Vince on LinkedIn and Twitter
- Learn more about Dark Cubed
- Hear TSIA’s Anne McClelland talk about “swallowing the fish”
- Get the 10% discount code on your Channel Management Certification at the Channel Institute