Vendor Zebra Looks To Widen Its Stripes

Juliann Larimer, Zebra&'s director of channel strategy, said the Vernon Hills, Ill.-based company sees its efforts in vertical markets as part of an overall initiative to create “an influencer” type of program for solution providers. Beginning with both health care and mobile retail solutions, Zebra is looking to engage sales “influencers” in the channel, she said.

In addition to financial incentives, Zebra has developed a co-marketing tool—an “ad wizard”—for use by solution providers; the vendor also will provide those who qualify with access to a “knowledge repository,” as well as solution provider partner Webcasts, Larimer said.

One goal, she said, would be to increase Zebra&'s penetration into accounts with its RFID product line—whether in health care or consumer packaging vertical markets.

“What we learned was we&'re only addressing 55 percent of the market,” she said. “We&'re trying to create partnerships in the channel to service the growing number of customers who seek [RFID solutions].”

Sponsored post

Among other things, Zebra has sought to increase the number of its distribution and third-party partnerships to add to and improve the channel services it offers solution providers, Larimer said.

Zebra, a $660 million provider of bar-code, labeling and RFID printing solutions, has 2,300 employees and an installed base of more than 4 million. Among its strategic partners is Symbol Technologies, the Holtsville, N.Y.-based point-of-sale hardware vendor.

Will Wick, sales and service manager for DuraLine Imaging, a Flat Rock, N.C.-based solution provider and Zebra channel partner, said he sees vertical opportunities opening up in RFID.

“Some of the hospitals are starting to look at some of the RFID tags, where they&'re doing the bracelets,” Wick said. “Health care is definitely one of our stronger vertical markets, and it&'s something where we need to be more involved.”

Wick said Zebra&'s lineup of products and services represents a growth area for his company, and the vendor&'s channel organization has remained engaged with the solution provider.