Ingram Micro Launches New Business Intelligence Center

Provides solution providers with market intelligence, buying data to help improve sales and marketing efforts.

Distributor Ingram Micro Inc. said it is making its storehouse of market intelligence data available to the 300 members of its VentureTech community in North America, providing participants with information on customers’ buying patterns and preferences, vertical markets and other data gleaned from sales transactions.

Officials said that the new offering will be housed as the Business Intelligence Center (BIC), in effect, a formalizing of the distributor’s market data initiatives begun four years ago. Central to the effort is Ingram's data base of information, distilled from some 47 million records compiled in the last seven years down to two million of the most recent data appended with demographic information.

Ingram said that the effort is important because it provides a resource for channel partners to boost sales, expand reach, and improve the accuracy of marketing and sales programs. It said that the material is useful not only for input on customer buying patterns but also for insight into marketing triggers.

Ingram is officially rolling out the service at its VentureTech conference this week in Hollywood, FL, where it will detail specific offerings, including a web-based portal from which channel partner members can locate and customize information, and pricing.

Kirk Robinson, Ingram vice president of channel marketing, who will head up the BIC’s 20-person staff, said that services will include analytical and predictive modeling, customer and end-user profiling, lead generation, market performance and share analysis, primary market and customer research, and opportunity and sales trending data.

“The Ingram Micro Business Intelligence Center has proven to generate actionable results that positively benefit the top and bottom line for our channel partners, as well as Ingram Micro,” Robinson said.

He said that Ingram previously has provided market data services to a number of IT vendors, including Belkin International Inc., Citrix Systems Inc., IBM Corp., Microsoft Corp., SonicWall Inc. and Xerox Corp.

“Last year, we teamed with Ingram Micro to design a custom primary market research study for SonicWall,” said David Lee, SonicWall vice president of marketing communications. “We found their thinking, design and research to be extremely insightful, thorough and action-oriented,” he said.

The distributor’s base of market intelligence data spans some seven years of end user transactions, Robinson said.

“By successfully tapping into the IT channel’s largest database and leveraging the intelligence gathered from our analytics tools, we are able to deliver an unprecedented level of visibility into IT market transactions and establish predictive behaviors around purchasing habits of both end users and solution providers,” Robinson said.

Services offered to distributor's VentureTech community

He said that the distributor currently is working with a number of VentureTech channel partners to help them to expand their market reach.

Ingram’s VentureTech network is comprised of channel partners generating at least 50 percent of revenue from sales to small- and medium-sized businesses. Members must maintain certain hardware, software, service and sales certifications. Each must purchase at least 65 percent of products sourced through distribution from Ingram. Participants pay a $2,000 annual membership fee.

As a group, VentureTech resellers buy about $1 billion worth of products from Ingram annually.

Ingram has made earlier forays to leverage its records database. In November, 2008, the distributor launched a marketing campaign to help vendors reach qualified channel partners by leveraging its volumes of business intelligence data.

TAGS: business intelligence,distribution,channel partners,Ingram Micro

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