Monday May 14, 2012

Issue 14: Oracle Exadata Marketing Campaign



Oracle Exadata
Marketing Campaign

The EMEA Oracle Exadata campaign was driven by Oracle in conjunction with UK marketing agency Panovus. Oracle EMEA partners selected for their strong history and experience working with Oracle Exadata, provided the agency with a list of customers and prospects that they wanted to target during the campaign. The agency then worked with each partner to create customised microsites and email campaigns branded and focused on each partner's Oracle Exadata solution.

Oracle delivered relevant content on Exadata and coordinated the pre-work with Panovus. The agency developed the micropages, and managed mail blast sending and telemarketing activities. Following the campaign, the agency collected the names of all targeted customers through the microsites, initiating a recall activity that qualified the leads into three categories: those with a project, interested, or no project. Finally, leads were passed to partners for their follow up.

These two testimonials are from Oracle partners in Germany that took part in the campaign. Here they share their experiences to date with the Oracle Exadata platform, and their recent success following the Oracle Exadata marketing campaign.

Photo of Lars Roterberg Inforsacom logo

Lars Roterberg,
Oracle Account Manager,
Inforsacom Informationssysteme GmbH

"Inforsacom was established over twelve years ago, providing specialist data center solutions to the German market. We started as a Sun partner in 1998, and our first logical step into software saw us adopt the Oracle Database as the perfect complementary solution. We are now an Oracle Platinum Partner with many Specializations which include: Database, Real Application Clusters (RAC), Database Security, Exadata, Performance Tuning, Linux, SPARC, x64, VM and Data Warehousing. We focus on the Financial Services, Automotive and Manufacturing sectors in Germany. Partnering with Oracle as a unified vendor provides us with a single point of contact, which makes project coordination so much simpler. In addition, our comprehensive knowledge of Oracle's solutions has given us an enviable reputation for reliability and industry focus that attracts great customers, for example Commerzbank.

"The Exadata campaign itself was a great success, generating strong awareness in the market and some promising leads. Oracle chose us for these campaigns because of our extensive joint history. We worked on Exadata from launch, and because it was a new product, we used the campaign to focus on our most promising potential customers for Integrated Systems. We made good use of the emailing, telemarketing and custom landing page services provided by Oracle and its marketing agency. But we also presented Exadata tools directly at customer sites, seizing opportunities to upsell and cross-sell to existing customers as well as making new ones. We contacted all the prospects generated from the campaign leads that were interested in adopting Exadata, and we're now looking forward to closing some of those deals in the short term.

"We have a comprehensive TCO/ROI analysis for Exadata which we use as part of our sales and marketing process. There are many things the customer has to consider before adopting Exadata, but predominantly they are interested in how much money they will save and what efficiencies they stand to gain. In our second customer project we ran an ROI analysis against legacy IBM Power Systems. The customer had to decide whether to upgrade to Exadata or go back to IBM. They decided to go with Exadata after witnessing the TCO/ROI analysis, and this is typical of our approach. The Exadata platform is a premium solution and price is a factor. In order to invest in a high-end appliance, our customers need to have proven, demonstrable savings and business benefits that indicate ROI will be reached quickly.

"During the whole campaign, there has also been a strong focus not only on Exadata but on Oracle Engineered Systems in general. So our next plan is to launch a second, combined campaign, for Oracle Engineered Systems, promoting Exadata, Exadata on SAP and the Oracle Database Appliance. We had a lot of discussions with the Oracle sales and management teams and were responsible for all follow up to the initial campaign, including delivering sales materials and receiving leads.

"The biggest challenge is also the first: selling the concept of the integrated system approach. Many customers initially have an issue because they operate different departments for their storage and their database, and what we now try to do is unite those. It's a cultural change and a big change in competencies too. Usually however, saving money and administration are sufficient incentives to drive through change. They don't need so many people to use Exadata, so we help our customers to free valuable resources to take care of other things across the business. We used to focus on telling the administrators how good Exadata is and the benefits of using it, but actually we've found it is more important that the management gets to see the potential impact of using Exadata on the whole company, explaining how it would thrive with better management of data. So now we address the executives, not the technical guys!

"Over the rest of the year we will continue to grow our Exadata business through the second campaign and deepen our relationship with Oracle as a key partner. We will continue to focus on our core data center competencies and expand these through further Oracle training to raise the knowledge of our employees, partners and customers still further in the area of Engineered Systems."

Photo of Herbert Rossgoderer ISE logo

Herbert Rossgoderer,
ISE Information Systems Engineering

"Information Systems Engineering was founded in 1991. We have been dedicated to Oracle technology from the very beginning and joined the partner programme in 1992. We focus on industries that generate huge volumes of data, so retail, telecommunications and financial services are our mainstay. Naturally we wanted to engage with Oracle Exadata as soon as possible, and so we became a beta tester partner in Reading, UK, back in 2008. By getting to grips with the new hardware so early, we were able to facilitate the first Oracle Exadata implementation in the world for in Poznan, Poland, a regional auction business along similar lines to eBay. Later in 2010 we purchased our own Exadata machine, enabling us to build the first Oracle Technology Center in Germany in 2010. In 2011 we received our Oracle Exalogic Elastic Cloud hardware, connected it to the Exadata via InfiniBand and began running benchmarks. We recently became the first Oracle Exalytics In-Memory Machine partner, so we now have all three Exa systems operating in our ISE Oracle Technology Center. Most recently we were also named Oracle Partner of the Year in Germany for 2011.

"In 2010, following the receipt of our first Oracle Exadata Machine, we began supporting Oracle in conducting a high volume of PoCs at our ISE Oracle Technology Center. Since then we have campaigned as an Oracle Specialized Partner certified in Oracle Database, Data Warehousing, Performance Tuning, Real Application Clusters (RAC), Linux and Exadata.

"For this Oracle Exadata campaign, Oracle and its marketing agency developed a customised, branded campaign microsite. We selected 100 customers and prospects, then conducted briefings in conjunction with Panovus, in which we explained how we conduct PoCs, and the opportunity of them taking part in PoCs in Nuremburg. During these sessions we discussed some great hot leads. Panovus sent out an eblast to a total of 200 prospective contacts, and each was followed up with a telemarketing call with resulting leads then passed to us to follow up.

"These activities coincided with our receipt of the Oracle Exalytics In-Memory Machine, so we also invited C-level representatives from our partners, customers and fresh prospects to the opening of the ISE Oracle Technology Center. Deep understanding of the technology coupled with demonstrating the benefits of adoption are essential for proving the rapid ROI and low TCO that makes Exadata such an attractive option for customers.

"One great example of our Exadata campaign success would be our work with Immonet, the second largest real estate portal in Germany, belonging to media giant Axel Springer AG. Immonet was a hot prospect that wanted to replace heterogeneous legacy non-Oracle systems with a fully-integrated Oracle stack, built from scratch using Oracle Data Warehousing and Oracle Business Intelligence. We marketed and sold them an Oracle Exadata Machine, and then ensured that everything from the hardware to the Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) front-end was fully implemented by ISE. Now we offer managed services at Axel Springer's data center from hardware through database to applications. During this project we also brought in an Oracle Business Intelligence partner from Switzerland called SumIT. We focused primarily on infrastructure and teamed up with SumIT for managing the BI and applications side.

"One of the strengths in marketing Oracle Exadata is also one of the key challenges: the sheer volume of data our prospects handle, and the need to migrate with minimal downtime. We developed a tool that allows huge amounts of data to come across to Oracle Exadata. This 'O2X Migrator' product not only ensures the basic functions are performed well, it also allows for fine-tuning so systems looks and feel nicer. Initially, telecommunications company E+ asked us to migrate all of its legacy systems from 9i to 11g R2, so we developed this tool to meet that challenge.

"In 2012 we want to ramp up Oracle Exadata marketing and awareness even further, by conducting many more PoCs, at least a further 20, at the ISE Oracle Technology Center. To ensure this happens we've recently added a 'fly and try' promotion to our campaign—an enticement for customers that enables them to land at the airport, conduct a PoC at our premises and return to their own business without ever entering the city! Our main goal of course is to sell a lot of Exa machines. We also want to give Oracle Exalytics a higher profile in the market and then become the leader in that industry. To achieve these things we will facilitate further Specialized training for our employees and aim for ever higher levels of partnership with Oracle in Exalytics to match our Exadata and Exalogic profile."

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