Tuesday, January 30, 2018

AvePoint Takes Fire for Unethical Marketing

Having worked in the Microsoft SharePoint space for many years, I know that it's unusual for SharePoint Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) to get much mainstream press coverage, so I was surprised to see a Washington Business article about an AvePoint marketing campaign. The article, All's fair in sales and marketing? Competitor blogs that Metalogix is for sale, tries to poach customers, highlights a shady marketing tactic recently employed by AvePoint against my former employer, Metalogix.

(Update: The Metalogix response, "Metalogix is Forever" has been posted now.)

Others have written about this dishonourable marketing move (for example: An Open Letter to AvePoint | An Unethical Marketing Campaign), and I can understand their frustration. The SharePoint partner community used to be a pretty tight-knit group focused on "coopetition." Sure, we were competing, but we also worked together to raise the profile of SharePoint--which BTW was a great strategy that paid off for everyone. As they say, 'a rising tide raises all boats.'

But that's just not the case anymore, as money poured into the situation, investors took notice and the atmosphere changed. A win at all costs mentality emerged from some companies and the whole situation was a lot less interesting for many of us who started in content management before the SharePoint era. I suspect this marketing ploy will backfire.