How to POC an SD-WAN Box for Your Boss or Client

Dan Baldwin from ChannelPartner.News demonstrates how any IT manager or technology consultant can setup and perform a SD-WAN POC (proof of concept) demonstration for a business owner or client to show how a properly configured SD-WAN appliance can work with a primary and backup internet connection to virtually guarantee no business application will ever fail from a single internet pipe going down.

Learn more at ChannelPartner.News. This demonstration uses a VeloCloud 520 Edge SD-WAN box, a FortiGate 60D firewall provided by managed services carrier SpectroTel and 2 UrbanCom fixed wireless internet connections.

"Don't Unplug This" (How to Not Lose Your Job as an IT Director, Project Manager or ICT Consultant)

Dan Baldwin of ChannelPartner.News shares important "Make this Video Before It's Needed" advice for IT directors, project managers and ICT consultants who want to keep their jobs or clients after the inevitable "Our Internet Stoped Working" phone call from the boss/client.

If you're an IT director, channel manager or ICT consultant, make sure you watch this video and heed the advice (to make a similar video for your boss of clients).

Your boss and clients will love you for it after their internet goes down because you know it's not a matter if "if" just "when".

For more information please visit www.ChannelPartner.News

4 Reasons Clients Will Want TBI2 Processing Their Orders (if TBI VIP = TBI Reality)

Before last Friday when I toured master agency TBI's Chicago headquarters on a VIP tour (for the first time), I'd never really thought of TBI as a top tier master agency. 

Even after winning Qwest's "Million Dollar" award in January of 2013 when I shot this video of TBI founder Geoff Shepstone, conventional wisdom held that TBI's only serious competitive advantages were a terrific Qwest agreement (for agents just dying to sell Qwest) and a high employee count enabling TBI to throw human labor at order processing problems. (To be fair, TBI was not the only large master agency in 2013 that seemed to solve operations challenges with human labor instead of better software).

But over a friendly dinner in Iowa last week on my Best/Worst of 2017 Road Trip, Geoff challenged me to meet "the New TBI" at one of their regular "VIP tours". 

So last Friday I accepted the challenge of an old friend, attended a 3-hour TBI VIP tour led by some very capable young executives and heard four reasons my own clients might fire me if I didn't send their next order to TBI to confirm or refute TBI's claim of the very best order processing back office among ALL master agencies (top tier or otherwise).

I'm Trying "the New TBI" Because my Clients Require "VIP" Order Processing (That's Still Missing from Other "Top Tier" Agencies)

To be honest, I've never had the owner of a national master agency challenge me to take a "VIP Tour" to confirm for myself that his (or her) master agency is at least a top tier agency if not operationally superior to all agencies. (I don't even know if the other master agencies even have a VIP tour). But long story short, the TBI VIP tour was very impressive primarily due to the following four claims that, if true, would make a huge difference for my clients.  

Read more

Why Businesses Choose CPI for Premises/Cloud Hybrid Phone & Data Solutions Using Mitel/ShoreTel

Jeff Drummond of CPI Telecom explains why businesses like hospitals and financial institution who can never have a voice or data failure reject cloud-only solutions for CPI's Mitel & ShoreTel premises & hybrid equipment solutions.

When CPI is your voice & IT managed services provider, your busienss gets same-day on-site support from one of CPI's 14,000 technicians nationwide.

Following is a corporate Mitel/ShoreTel video discussing the synergy of the merger of the two companies.

To learn more visit

This video was produced November 2017 by Dan Baldwin for www.ChannelPartner.News

Why Businesses Choose Steve Gerhardt's D&M Enterprises

Steve Gerhardt of D&M Enterprises discusses why large & small businesses alike choose Steve's consulting firm to solve ICT (information & communication technology) challenges.

D&M solutions include unified communications, carrier services, cloud services, contact center, CXO consulting, back office support as well as software development & optimization.

To learn more about D&M please visit

Interview was conducted 11/18/17 by Dan Baldwin for

Why Businesses Consult with iSymplify for Business Communications

Lorie Burkemper, Nick Kramer & Kris Boulware of iSymplify explain how they consult with their business clients using assessment, solution design and project management to help them leverage technology to maximize business communications.

iSymplify enabling technologies include SD-WAN, UCaaS (unified communications as a service), hosted VoIP, hosted contact center, public, private & hybrid cloud, managed security beyond the firewall and many others.

To learn more please visit

This video was created in November 2017 by Dan Baldwin for www.ChannelPartner.News

What Do Business Customers Want to Go Into "the Cloud" & Why?

Steve Gerhardt of D&M enterprises explains why business customers have lost their fear of "the cloud" and are moving email servers, phone systems PBXs and contact center hardware into cloud-based solutions in the form of hosted VoIP, & UCaaS (unified communications as a service)..

In the coming year business customers will continue migrating most any "business application" to the cloud that helps them reduce their requirement to maintain any sort of technology hardware on their premises. "DaaS" or desktop-as-a-service will soon eliminate the need to maintain desktop computers.

To learn more about D&M please visit

Interview was conducted 11/18/17 by Dan Baldwin for www.ChannelPartner.News.

VARs, MSPs & Channel Partners: How do they help shared clients?

Steve Gerhardt of D&M Enterprises shares how he helps VARs (value added resellers) & MSPs (managed service providers) setup a carrier & cloud services project desk.

VARs and MSPs that have D&M take care of carrier & cloud services for them benefit by growing the monthly revenue that these services generate without the risk of loosing good clients by turning over carrier & cloud services to poorly trained partners.

To learn more about D&M please visit

Interview was conducted 11/18/17 by Dan Baldwin for

Why Do Businesses Choose the ITC/Zultys Phone System Over Mitel, ShoreTel, Avaya & Cisco?

Braun Mincher of ITC Telecom in Denver explains why mid-sized multilocation businesses with 100 to 1000 employees choose his customized Zultys phone system over Mitel, ShoreTel, Avaya & Cisco.

By combining superior white-glove customer service along with a hybrid hosted VoIP model that ensures bullt-proof failover, ITC has retained 99% of their business phone system clients over the past 15-years.

To learn more visit

This video was created in November 2017 by Dan Baldwin for ChannelPartner.News.

Cloud & Carrier Services Channel Partner Predictions for 2018

Steve Gerhardt of D&M Enterprises, one of the most successful ICT (information & communications technology) channel partners in the industry share his predictions for what solutions will be in the strongest demand from business clients in 2018.

To learn more about D&M please visit

Interview was conducted 11/18/17 by Dan Baldwin for

TBI in Chicago Claims the Best Back Office Among Master Agents...

So as you know, I'm doing a Best & Worst of 2017 Road Trip and I'm in Chicagoland this week taking care of a client while visiting with the top partners & vendors.

This Friday I'll tour TBI's headquarters for a 3-hour "VIP Tour" that TBI showcases for visiting partners and vendors interested in learning what some call "the best kept secret in the channel industry - TBI's back office operations".

View the following video to see a sneak peak of what TBI shows prospective partners & vendors on their VIP tour.

Check into our blog next week to read my review of my tour and how I believe it compares to other master agency back offices I've toured.

Meet Partner of the Week Winner: Brad Carrell

Click the video below to meet ICTA's partner of the week.

PARTNER of the WEEK WINNER: Brad Carrell. Based out of Kansas City, Brad's company Strategic Telecom Partners specializes in WAN (wide area network) connectivity for Kansas City headquartered businesses as well as SD-WAN, enterprise mobility, IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) and matching managed services distributors (master agencies) with the carriers & providers they know best. 



This SD-WAN Video Demo is The Starting Point for Customers & Partners

Any ICT (information & communications technology) solution partner trying to understand if SD-WAN (software defined wide are network) is something their business customers could benefit from should view this short video and then share the video with their client. 

In a nutshell, SD-WAN ensures that business customers have the fastest, most resilient business data connections at the lowest prices for all of their prioritized business applications.

This video shows how the failure of one internet connection does not mean the failure of an application (a voice phone call in the video) because the SD-WAN technology routes the network application (the phone call) around the network outage without the phone call dropping.

More robustly programmed SD-WAN appliances and networks do the same for all you applications.

Dozens of SD-WAN appliances are available through hundreds of VARs (value added resellers), MSPs (managed service providers) and network service providers.

To learn which SD-WAN appliance or SD-WAN VAR, MSP or carrier is right for your business, contact a Recommended Partner in your area.

Best (and Worst) of CP 2017 Road Trip

Help ChannelPartner.News find the Best (and Worst) of 2017

Individual Video Blog Posts from Road Trip

11.19.17 Chicago: Sunday - Drive along Lake Michigan north of Chicago. AlbumClip1, Clip2, Clip 3

11.18.17 Chicago: Saturday - Interview Steve Gerhardt of D&M. Post1, Post2, Post3, Post4

11.17.17 Chicago: Friday - VIP tour of master agency TBI & visit to Elmhurst Elks Lodge #1531. Album

11.10.17 Chicago: Friday - Arrive at client site for tech assist visit

11.10.17 St. Louis: Friday - Visit with Lorie Burkemper & team at iSymplify. Blog post.

11.9.17 Des Moines: Thursday - Visit with Jeff Drummund at CPI Telecom

11.8.17 Kansas City: Wednesday - Visit with Brad Carrell of STP. Blog post.

11.8.17 Kansas City: Wednesday - Arrive at client site for tech assist visit

11.7.17 Denver: Tuesday - Arrive at client site for tech assist visit

11.7.17 Denver: Tuesday - Visit With Braun Mincher, ITC, Mid-Size customer Zultys VAR

11.6.17 St. George, UT - A. Trip Intro, B. Awards Overview 1, C. Awards Overview 2

11.5.17 Lake Elsinore, CA: Depart on trip

Playlist Click here to watch all the road trip videos

In cunjuntion with a tech assist site survey for a client, ICTA President will spend November & December taking a lap around the US cataloging the best and worst of voice, data, internet & managed services while completing our 2017 Partners Choice & Customers Choice annual awards.

Following is the map of the road trip that started November 5th.

Best (and Worst) of CP 2017 RoadTrip Map

If you're within a 100 miles or so of the planned travel route (or even if you're not) email Dan at to let him know what you think was the best and/or worst of 2017 in the channel partner world of voice, data, internet and managed services.


While traveling through each metro, Dan will be specifically on the lookout to identify the top partners & top vendors that would qualify as the Customers Choice for various solution categories on our Recommended Partners & Recommended Vendors lists.

Partners can recommend themselves using our award claim form at ChannelPartner.News/2018

Vendors can recommend themselves by emailing Dan Baldwin at

Four Video Interview Questions

1. What category of cloud managed service provider are you & what do we need to know about what you do for your clients?

2. For your business and your clients what was the best & worst of 2017?

3. What's your plan for your business & clients in 2018?

4. What advice do you have for business end-users, industry vendors & fellow cloud entreprenuers?

ICTA is Covering Telarus Partner Summit 2017

ICTA is at the annual Telarus Partner Summit and we'll be reporting on the most significant "agent take-a-ways".

Following is a taste of what we're looking forward to.

For the benefit of those who can't attend in person, Telarus is publishing several sessions on Facebook Live.

Check out the first several below.



Maximize Your Verizon Opportunities - Intelisys is now direct with Verizon!

Maximize Your Verizon Opportunities:  Intelisys is now direct with Verizon!  |  Learn More!  |  800-615-8330 



This is UCaaS Done Right! Make the Most with Broadview's Q2 Spiff.

This is UCaaS Done Right!  Make the Most with Broadview's Q2 Spiff.

 Click below for additional details and links ....

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AireSpring - Rise Above the Noise

Bandwidth Builders / Spectrum Residential


Bandwidth Builder / Spectrum Residential

action hyperlink + phone # + name, etc.


Channel Partner Trade Show Expo Hall Walk-Thur

If you missed the show or were too "hurt" to go to the last expo hall session, here's what we saw.

The Top 500 Business Communications Technology Channel Partners Announced

Congratulations! if you're listed on the list at www.ChannelPartner.News/Partners you're one of the top 500 partners in the US and eligible to download & display the awards listed on this document

Race to Booth 915 and talk to the TeleDomani Pit Crew

TeleDomani Trade Show

  For more information, email:








Resolve to Earn Big in 2017 with AireSpring


For more information visit the AireSpring website at