In my last post, I talked about the product-related aspects of delivering free backup for free VMware vSphere (also called free ESXi or unlicensed ESXi.) Thought folks might be interested in how we went about announcing it.
First, the coverage has been outstanding! Here’s an incomplete list of just a few of the analysts, blogs, and others who wrote about what we’re offering:
- Storage Switzerland: VMworld 2013 Interview with Unitrends
- CRN: VMworld 2013: 20 Must-See Storage Offerings (Part 1) (8/28)
- eWeek: Unitrends Offers No-Cost, 4VM Backup for Free vSphere Version (8/28)
- The VAR Guy: VMworld 2013 Solutions Exchange Vendor Wrapup for VARs (8/28)
- Columbia Regional Business Report: Unitrends’ new backup product takes on Microsoft (8/27)
- DABCC.com: Unitrends Delivers Industry’s First Free Backup and Recovery Solution for Unlicensed Version of VMware vSphere Hypervisor (8/27)
- StorageReview.com: Unitrends Enterprise Backup Free Edition with Support for Free VMware vSphere Announced (8/27)
- Virtual-Strategy Magazine: Unitrends Delivers Industry’s First Free Backup and Recovery Solution for Unlicensed Version of VMware vSphere Hypervisor (8/27)
- Tom’s IT Pro: Unitrends Intros Free Backup, Recovery for vSphere Hypervisor (8/28)
- VirtualizationSoftware.com: Free Data Protection for Free VMware vSphere ESXi from Unitrends (8/28)
But it gets even more interesting. We actually won an award for best SMB product! Well, kind of. It turns out that at the last moment we didn’t receive it – because we didn’t have a booth at VMworld.
Why didn’t Unitrends have a booth at VMworld? The reason is pretty simple. We tend to watch every dollar we spend pretty carefully. Last year we got a booth, sent tons of people, gave away a motorcycle, and at the end of the day we weren’t thrilled with the results in terms of reaching people who were interested in backup.
So this year we tried something very, very different. We asked a person at Unitrends named Jenn Sipala to lead a guerrilla effort at VMworld centered around the idea of making people aware of a new offering we were planning (the Unitrends Enterprise Backup™ Free Edition product for free VMware vSphere.) Jenn led a cross-functional team including our corporate marketing group (led by Jenn Sullivan, our leader of marketing at Unitrends, with work by Katie Drucker and Kelly Lowe at VMworld, Tina Dussault on the web site, Paul Nashawaty in alliance/analyst marketing), our leader of business development Lee MacIllwinen, Mark Bloom and Bob Gagnon (channel), Tommy Phan (sales engineering), and our evangelist Maria Pressley. And of course this doesn’t include the models who helped us as well.
Wow! That’s a lot of folks and a lot of cross-functional coordination, huh? And I’ve got to tell you – we’re pleased with the results. Next year, I believe we’ll marry the two concepts and have a booth while we go guerrilla.
In the meantime, it’s incredibly gratifying to see the product get such glowing reviews. A lot of time we focus on the R&D – the developers – and we’ll do that another time here. But quite often marketing and sales and G&A (Teresa and Jake) and QA (Joe C.) and a lot of others are also doing heroic work – so a thank you to all.