Bringing Down Barriers to Managed Backup Services

Backups should just work. They should not require hours and hours of management each week. That’s what Ted Roller told Channel Pro-SMB when he sat down for his first interview with us since becoming vice president of channel development at Intronis.

Intronis is a channel-only company aimed at SMB clients and the VARs that service them. “We’re built around several principles,” says Roller. “One of them is that small businesses should be afforded the opportunity to back up their data with the same kind of integrity and value that a large enterprise is able to take advantage of because of dollars and scope.”

Another principle of Intronis is what Roller’s team calls MPG, or “Man-hours Per Gig.” Roller says he understands how valuable time is to the managed service provider (MSP). He says Intronis develops its products and services in order to “lower the amount of time that an MSP has to spend managing backup for its customers on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis.”

With the latest iteration of its cloud-based backup services due out this fall, Intronis is hoping to attract resellers who might otherwise not consider themselves MSPs. The key, Roller suggests, is in how these non-MSP resellers perceive cloud-based backup solutions.

Roller points out that the first priority needs to be the relationship that’s maintained with the SMB client. “If you deliver value and continue to enhance your relationships doing quarterly business reviews and being part of the solution, then you’re really not an MSP; your’re an IT provider with cloud-based deliverables and maybe some managed deliverables.”

What the cloud provides VARs, Roller says, is a means of delivering solutions in a more effective fashion without “having to build the back office for every solution.” Channel pros, Roller explains, can expand their “repertoire of deliverables” to have a broader impact on the relationships they maintain with SMBs by offering low-impact, cloud-based managed services.

“For the past 20 years, all we’ve been trying to do is figure out how to get data backed up into a mobile format and get it off-site,” Roller says. “Well, cloud-based backup is the ultimate evolution of that process.”

He says the Intronis cloud-based backup and recovery service enables VARs to wade lightly into managed services without having to spend hours and hours of time.

“It creates a monthly recurring revenue stream for you and establishes the beginnings of a managed services practice or a cloud-based services practice, depending on how you want to frame it and built it. You can also layer additional capabilities, like those provided via RMM, or hosted email, or the millions of things that exist out there in the cloud.”

The question is: How to sell the service to SMBs?

“All resellers have to do is wrap the word ‘cloud’ around an online backup solution and explain it to their customers,” says Roller. “The way Intronis backup works, it touches a lot of the HIPPA compliance regulations.”

Healthcare and educational institutions, where compliance laws are prominent, make good candidates for cloud-based backup and recovery offerings. “Professional services, like healthcare, legal and accounting, and education are verticals where we are very strong.”

To help VARs enter into the lightweight managed services field, Intronis offers training, branding, and support. It starts with the Customer Success program.

The Customer Success program is offered for 60 days, beginning at signup. “We know that the more our MSPs know about the products, the more successful they’re going to be,” Roller says. “For those first 60 days, VARs get an account rep with a strong amount of expertise.”

In addition, VARs gain access to training programs and are provided access to private-label website and agent branding.