It’s taken some time to read through all of your excellent comments and do a final report of post-event surveys about the breakout sessions at Citrix Summit 2015. Success! I’ve come up with a tally of the top five sessions from Las Vegas. Just a note that there are many methods for compiling ratings like these—I’ve chosen to use the amount of buzz these sessions received, both on-site at Summit and in the follow-up survey comments (thanks for taking the time to fill these out, by the way; they really do help guide planning for the event).
Let’s Jump in with the Top Session
SUM129: “Why Citrix Beats VMware Every Time.”
Presented by Vishal Ganeriwala, Director, Technical Marketing, and Thomas Berger, Senior Product Marketing Manager, Citrix.
This session on the holes and shortcomings in Horizon 6 was one of my picks in Competitive Positioning from a session catalog blog post, and response was tremendous. Comments included: “It was the best session at Summit.” “Really liked the video comparisons.” “Good content that I can use when recommending important features for customers to compare.” “This is key information for an SE or account manager, as we battle VMWare daily. Vishal and Thomas always do an awesome job of dispelling the VMWare FUD and giving us real ammo to use to beat them. Excellent!”
Two Sessions Focused on Selling into Key Vertical Markets Yielded Some Great Feedback.
SUM114: “Selling into Healthcare: Industry Trends and Industry-Specific KPI’s to Identify, Validate and Drive IT and Business Transformation with Citrix Solutions.“
Presented by Chris Balzaretti, Principal Corp Account Manager, Susan Biddle, Director, Vertical Solutions Marketing, Jake Hughes Sr., Senior Sales Engineer and Andrew Winiarski, Senior Architect, Citrix
This session addressed the challenges and priorities that are top-of-mind for healthcare executives in developed markets and how to differentiate Citrix IT solutions using “Anatomy of a Deal” discussions. Attendees said it had “great structure and flow. Great tactical and strategic takeaway points.” “Content was powerful; picked up several tips I am going to implement right away.”
SUM115: “Selling Into Education: Understanding Key Trends, Business Priorities, and Budget Requirements to Lead Your Education Customers to Success.”
Presented by Nicole Nesrsta, Solutions Marketing Manager, Larry Sweeney, Senior Director – Gulf States, Olivia Webster, Field Sales Manager II and Amy Sanger, Regional Sales Manager, Southeast Sales, Citrix.
According to attendees, this session was “engaging and relevant to the business cases and challenges we face,” with “great education-focused vertical language that I can immediately apply in my role” and “relevant information that can help me sell immediately.”
Though All of the Technical Sessions Were Well Attended, One In Particular Had Attendees Really Excited!
The exclamation points in the comments were a giveaway. Plus, this session generated my hands-down favorite comment:
SUM131: “Optimizing the mobility experience with Receiver X1 and Framehawk.”
Presented by Derek Thorslund, Director, Product Management and Stephen Vilke, Senior Director, Media Lab, Citrix.
“This is game changing!” said one attendee. “Amazing session!” said another about this technical session focused on how to leverage Receiver X1 and Framehawk to create compelling customer value. “This for me was probably the best session of the event,” one attendee said. “Really enjoyed the Framehawk tech overview on secret sauce. Will be very helpful for customer discussions.” Another attendee added, “Excellent tech session into initial insight into of Framehawk; very useful info and this is CRITICAL for our value-add of HDX over ‘others.’” Finally, one attendee requested, “Please make me a part of the Tech Preview for Framehawk or I will fall to the floor and cry…” I’m pretty confident that’s a good thing.
Finally, the Citrix Service Provider Track was New for Summit 2015.
A panel discussion on the defining characteristics of a high-value, differentiated hosted workspace service delivered a great experience for partners:
SUM117: “Go Vertical and Go Big: Get Higher Margins for Hosted Services.”
Presented by Gary Feldman, CEO, I-Business Network; Mike McWilliams, CEO, 3t Systems; Kenneth Oestreich,” Presented by Senior Director of Product Marketing, Citrix; Byron Patrick, CEO and Co-founder, Simplified Innovations; and Erik van Laar, Director, Multrix.
The session explored why service providers “go vertical” with a partner panel sharing insights and real-world experiences. “A really engaging panel event,” one attendee commented. “Good panel analysis. A lot of great insight about specific markets and verticals,” another attendee said. “It was great to hear directly from CSPs about their experience.”
Thank you again for your feedback. I hope you’ll save the date for Citrix Summit 2016, which is back in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand in January. Meanwhile, be sure to follow me on Twitter @merisummers for news and updates on Citrix Synergy 2015, in Orlando May 12–14.