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You can’t engage and score prospects with content marketing unless that content is clear, improve and specific. One example is the “storage hypervisor” buzzword I uncovered while reporting a recent piece on Storage Orchestration for Computerworld.

Calling something a storage hypervisor implies it can deliver the same dramatic cost savings and flexibility as a server hypervisor. But looking under the surface, what is what your serious prospects will do, shows important differences between the two. Failing to clearly explain storage hypervisors throws away an opportunity to more closely engage your prospects and to score them based on what content they read.

Server vs. Storage Hypervisors

Server virtualization, for all its underlying wizardry, is fairly easy to understand. Take one physical server, which often runs at a fraction of its capacity, and split it into “virtual” servers that each work harder.  The hypervisor is software that juggles work among the virtual servers to assure work gets done efficiently. The customer buys fewer physical servers and spends less on real estate and power, the virtualization vendor sells some software. Everyone goes home happy.

In storage virtualization, the underlying technology is the same: A software layer that masks the makeup of physical storage devices. So is the aim: To make the best use of customer’s existing storage before they buy more. But looking more closely, things get more complicated.

In server virtualization, one physical device is usually split into multiple logical devices, each devoted to one application. Most storage virtualization does the opposite: Combine multiple physical devices in a single pool of storage that can be accessed by multiple applications.

Some storage “hypervisors” provide new ways for achieving this storage pooling, by (for example) virtualizing the storage servers that control the storage hardware. Other hypervisors virtualize applications such as back and deduplication to perform them more effectively. Some support only some forms of storage (block vs. file) or some uses cases (dev/test vs. production.)

All this makes storage hypervisors a more complex sell than server hypervisors. This is an opportunity to be the first among your competitors to a) educate your prospects and b) score how good a fit they are for your offering based on what they read.

Decision Points

You’ll get far more, and better qualified, leads for “storage hypervisors” by creating, and tracking the readership of, content that answers questions such as:

  • What you are virtualizing? Storage, storage servers, applications or a combination thereof?
  • Which usage scenarios do you target? : Production systems such as Web serving or on-line transaction processing, or infrastructure services such as backup and restore?
  • Which third-party storage tools do you support? Does the customer need to “rip and replace” their existing backup software to get the benefits of your virtualization?
  • How well do your storage hypervisors integrate with server hypervisors to efficiently scale the entire IT infrastructure up and down as application needs change?
  • Where does your storage hypervisor run? On a physical appliance, to maximize performance and interoperability? Or a virtual appliance, to maximize flexibility and reduce cost?

Answering questions like these clearly in your content marketing empowers you to qualify your storage hypervisor prospects based on which features and functions they choose to read about.

Author: Bob Scheier
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I'm a veteran IT trade press reporter and editor with a passion for clear writing that explains how technology can help businesses. To learn more about my content marketing services, email bob@scheierassociates.com or call me at 508 725-7258.

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