Two reasons Lotus sales might look worse than they could be

by Volker Weber

Afaik, there are two technical reasons that hurt Lotus:

  1. IBM Forms and Websphere Portal are sold through the Lotus business. They are expensive products so sales people like to push them. However, they are reported under the Websphere brand.
  2. IBM does not compensate for renewals. There is no reason for sales people to push renewals into the mid market. When was your last visit?

Take this with a grain of salt. IBM does not really give me that information directly.


1) That info has been anecdotally out there for a long time. I'd be interested to know if the development costs/sales of Portal are included in the Lotus or WebSphere numbers. Also, much of Lotus product sales into large customers are bundled with Portal in Accelerator packages (Connections, Quickr, Sametime etc). If love to know if those numbers make it into the Lotus figures properly.

2) That is true in almost all cases, and massively damages existing Lotus customer relationships. Worse, IBM partners are also now very badly compensated for renewals, so almost the only ones that have an incentive to call for renewals are few telephone-based renewals teams around the world. I've always preached that 'a customer is for life not just for Christmas' given IBM's bizarre Q4 net-new focus, this only gets worse year on year.

However, these are small details really. It is the trend in the numbers over the past 5 years that tells the tale.

Stuart McIntyre, 2011-04-21

IBM Sales LEADS with, "Let us help migrate you to Exchange" instead of, "Let us show you why your investment in Notes was the right call and why more investment will be equally effective." They also don't bother talking to the people on the proverbial front lines before they waltz in with their spiel about Portal and LotusLive. Their incompetence is matched only by their arrogance. But no, I'm not bitter at all...

Rob McDonagh, 2011-04-21

Rob, are you freaking kidding!?

Tim Paque, 2011-04-27

Ha! Not even a little bit. If anything, I understated it...

Rob McDonagh, 2011-04-27

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