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11 Things to Know About... WPC Sessions

With a little more than a month until the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in Washington, D.C., session descriptions are beginning to appear in earnest on the Microsoft Partner Network Portal.

With a little more than a month until the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) in Washington, D.C., session descriptions are beginning to appear in earnest on the Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) Portal. We've scoured the available listings for some highlights.

  1. Steve Ballmer Keynote. The CEO is confirmed for his usual keynote. Even when Ballmer doesn't have news, partners tell us they draw energy from Ballmer's WPC speeches. This year, he probably will have news about what Microsoft being "all in" on the cloud means to partners.
  2. Kevin Turner Keynote. Partners are in the COO's portfolio, so it's always crucial to hear what he has to say. At the least, he's usually entertaining in his unbridled competitiveness.
  3. Allison Watson Keynotes. Worldwide Partner Group CVP Watson will play her usual role, introducing the big keynotes each day and giving her own. Expect a lot of detail about cloud programs and MPN transition specifics.
  4. Cloud Sales. If you're interested in making money with the cloud Microsoft-style, sessions galore await at the WPC. A few that caught our attention: "Best Practices: Selling Cloud-Based Solutions to a Customer" and "Better Together: The Next Generations of Microsoft Online Services + Microsoft Office 2010."
  5. A Wide Lens on the Sky. For those with a more philosophical bent, there's "Cloud as Reality: The Upcoming Decade of the Cloud and the Windows Azure Platform."
  6. Geeking Out in the Cloud. If you want to drill down, there are sessions like this one for ISVs: "Building a Multi-Tenant SaaS Application with Microsoft SQL Azure and Windows Azure AppFabric."
  7. Vertical Clouds. Many sessions are geared toward channeling cloud computing into verticals, such as, "Education Track: Cloud Computing and How This Fits into the Academic Customer Paradigm."
  8. Other Verticals. If a session like "Driving Revenue with Innovative Solutions in Manufacturing Industries" doesn't float your boat, there's probably something equally specific in your area that will.
  9. Market Research. Leverage Microsoft's ample resources in sessions like, "FY11 Small Business Conversations."
  10. "Capture the Windows 7 Opportunity." Judging by the adoption curve, you'll want to execute on anything you learn from this session PDQ.
  11. "Click, Try, Buy! A Partner's Guide to Driving Customer Demand Generation with Microsoft Dynamics CRM!" How could you pass up a session with that many exclamation points?

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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