To the delight of many partners we launched The Big Easy 4.0 on January 3rd! What better way to say Happy New Year to our partners! The Big Easy is an incentive program where after a customer makes a qualifying purchase of Open Licensing and valid redemption, a check is sent to the customer made payable to the partner of their choice to use toward the purchase of additional services or products (software and/or hardware) provided by the partner. To learn more about The Big Easy attend our Channel Incentives monthly call this Friday at 1PM CST (Register for the webcast now!) and go to http://www.MicrosoftIncentives.com/bigeasy.

 So why Open Value?

First, the Open Value  program that includes Software Assurance (SA) helps customers get the most from their software investment. SA includes new version rights and the ability to spread payment evenly over three years as well as potential rights to eLearning, 24x7 phone support incidents, at home use program rights for Office, training vouchers, Deployment Planning Services and Cold Backup for Disaster Recovery to name a few. To dig deeper on SA benefits go to https://partner.microsoft.com/US/licensing/volumelicensesoftwareassurance. Next go to the LicenseWise Configuratort to see exactly which and how many benefits a specific purchase will earn a customer at http://www.microsoft.com/licensing/licensewise (once you create a quote via Open Value, SA benefits are listed on tab 4, Quote Overview and click on the windows pull down menu by SA benefits).

Second, via The Big Easy, your customer will qualify for higher payouts. Let me NET out a couple of examples. Office Pro via Open L (Open Business) earns a customer back $30 per copy. Windows Server Standard via Open L earns customer $45. Via Open Value customer would earn $105 for Office Pro and $160 for Windows Server Standard. See what I mean? This is a pretty easy break even. So let's now NET out a real life example. Customer needs 50 copies of Office Pro, 1 Windows Server Standard and 1 Exchange Server Standard. Under Open L customer will earn back $2,255. Under Open Value customer will earn back $5,870. Next, ask your customer how they are going to protect their environment and position Forefront. Adding Forefront Threat Management Gateway (TMG) to the Open Value deal brings the total to $6,435. The amount will also grow as the customer purchases from two and three product groups. Check out the Big Easy Calculator at http://www.microsoftincentives.com/BigEasy4/estimate.aspx.

It's all about bringing more value to your customer to close the deal and earn services revenue. The Big Easy and Open Value are tools of the trade.

 Happy 2010!

Andy McNulty, Partner Territory Manager, Midwest Area (IL, IN, WI)