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Open Letter To All New Zealand Google Apps Resellers

Have recently sent the following to all NZ-based Google Apps resellers.

In the spirit of openess AND knowing the current list probably doesn't cover everyone:
SUBJECT: NZ Google Apps eco-system wants you

You're a Google Apps re-seller and I work for one (WaveAdept based here in Wellington)

This would normally mean in the NZ IT/tech industry we should only ever see each other over the fence of competing RFPs
However, I believe Google Apps users within NZ are suffering from a lack of local support, information and "mates to call upon".
There are also myths galore ("What if NZ loses its one Internet cable to the world"), misrepresentation ("Google Apps is just not allowed within the NZ Government agencies) and plain old "who knew that?!" ("Wow, I didn't know Google was more than search!?")

Whilst Google can provide a swag of information it is up to us, the local representatives, to mould this collateral to suit our particular audience.
Unfortunately I don't think New Zealand resellers (big or small) are doing this particularly well, hence the ongoing issues/views people have of Google Apps.

Yeah, so what are we doing about it?
One small step to help address this was to create two (free & independent) online groups aimed, primarily, at NZ Google App re-sellers such as yourself but also existing and new users:
(there's also an associated Twitter List if that floats your boat, ask and you shall be added :-)

What was the point in that?
Whilst I believe the market here in NZ will be big enough for all, the market is currently small and stifled in its growth (see above).

This doesn't take away the great work all re-sellers are trying to do, we just need a period of focussing some of the "base" education and knowledge.

Why should I ("what's in it for me")?
Well, if grasping at every opportunity and making them your own is the approach then probably you'll see nothing in it for you.
However, if we can't serve the current NZ-based Google Apps community I question how on earth we can grow the market to the benefit of us all!

And other vendors are going to have a far more concerted approach come the new year (think Microsoft rallying it's already present eco-system and you understand the challenge).

To answer the question: because it will help grow the market.

But isn't that Google's job
Yes, ultimately a local Google Apps presence from Google will need to be more permanent, vocal and sustained.
However, are you willing to wait until NZ is big enough to make a blip in the Googleplex - no, neither am I.

And don't forget that these online groups have already had some official Google input.
The more active, engaged and connected they are the more active and engaged will be Google.

But isn't this just a WaveAdept self-promotion gig?
I work for WaveAdept but this is not a WaveAdept run initiative.
But hey, let's be honest WaveAdept are already up and running in the groups and will gain as much commercial benefit from growing the Google Apps market as you and all the other vendors.

In order to alleviate any perceived benefit of my workplace I will, a) never use my WaveAdept detailss; b) share ownership of the groups with someone else ... you?

I'm also posting this email (without your name, of course) on my blog as an open letter to all to join and share the facilitation/ownership.

OK, now what?
And then be as brave as you care sharing the problems, solving the issues and asking the big questions.
You will have full edit rights to the groups and be able to invite whoever you want.

And finally from a purely commercial stance, we're always looking to extend our re-seller partnerships throughout NZ, Dave at WaveAdept is the person to talk with (gotta keep myself outta all that :-)

Cheers, Mike Riversdale

tel: +64 (0)21-169 1359
Skype: mike.riversdale
--------- - Connecting people to people via information


  1. When is the next national Google Apps unconference (in Welly)? I'll help organise it if others are keen.

    Can invite people in our networks to come and see what the fuss is about. If those people then go an brag to their boss about Gapps then the word can spread. Also great chance to engage the Fortune 5,000,000 as 37signals calls them - the SMEs, or 3-5 person shops/consultancies.

    What say ye?

  2. Both professionally and personally I use a heap of Google products - I say thank you for attempting to bring Google Apps resellers together, it can only help the pool of potential customers for you. I agree that the NZ market is large enough for everyone - if they know what is available. I use AdWords, Blogger, AdSense, Analytics, gmail, docs, calendar, Android and a few other things but Google Apps is something we have yet to look into - we're not doing that currently as we don't know why we would move from gmail, docs and calendar to Google Apps (or have we effectively done it)?

    Good luck!!!

  3. @blair - Hmm, a whole unconference on Google Apps - do we think we'd get enough people, conversations? Great idea though ... what do people think?

    @Simon Thanks for the encouragement.


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