Microsoft's cloud marketing strategy has come under fire over claims its "All In" campaign has alienated some partners.
The software giant has been using the "All In" tagline over the past year to demonstrate its commitment to the cloud.
The campaign is said to have upset a large number of Microosft's software resellers, causing them to question how they fit in with the firm's cloud-focused future.
According to sources in the Microsoft channel, this is the reason why the "All In" slogan has been replaced with its new "Cloud Power" campaign.
In a statement to ChannelWeb, Clare Barclay, director for SMB at Microsoft, said the "Cloud Power" campaign was merely an extension of its "All In" philosophy.
She said: "As of November, Microsoft kicked off a global 'Cloud Power' marketing campaign focused on the business market, which continued our commitment to being 'All In'.
"As a component part of the campaign, partners are clearly signposted so customers can contact them directly to follow through on cloud discussions."
One partner, who asked not to be named, said Microsoft's "all or nothing" approach to the cloud had been an ongoing source of consternation for partners.
"It has generated a lot of anxiety among partners and caused many to feel alienated by the direction the company is heading in," the partner said.
This view is shared by Andy Trish, managing director of Microsoft Gold Partner NCI Technologies. He said: "It is disheartening that Microsoft seems to be turning its back on the partners that have put it where it is today by reselling their on-premise software."
Mark Herbert, business development director at Microsoft BPOS Syndication Partner IntY, said comments made at last year's partner conference may have exacerbated things.
"I was at the World Partner Conference (WPC) last year when Steve Ballmer told partners that ‘if you're not in the cloud, you're not our folks'," he said.
"For VARs that are deeply entrenched in enterprise agreements and reselling software, I can imagine that may not have gone down too well."
Trish said cloud has dominated discussions at WPC for several years, leaving him in no doubt where the company's priorities lie.
He added: "Choice is an important part of any business decision, but the only choices Microsoft are giving are cloud-based."
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