The Riverbed Blog (testing)

A blog in search of a tagline

International Metaphor Day

Posted by riverbedtest on March 10, 2011

Today's guest blogger is Nik Rouda.  Nik is Riverbed's Director of Marketing, Solutions and Verticals, and he writes a pretty nifty blog entry.

Though I frequently get asked, “So, what do you do for a living?” I have a hard time with this question.  Baby I’ve found that a generic brush-off like “I work in IT” never seems to satisfy, only prompting more questions.  A more precise answer generally goes “I do product and solutions marketing on how globally connected enterprises can optimize their wide area networks, gain visibility into … Hey, where are you going?”

Priceline_shatner What’s a guy to do?  How do I answer this question without getting too nerdy or being too vague?  The best efforts seem to involve metaphors: “I’m like William Shatner in all those Priceline commercials” or “I’m a televangelist,  but I promote go-fast networking gear and I don’t use much hair gel.”  If followed quickly enough with “want another drink?” then the moment passes pretty acceptably.

NDippitydoow, sometimes I’m actually talking to someone who works in technology, such as a storage administrator.  What metaphors can I use about Riverbed to get a storage guy thinking about the value of Riverbed?

Here are a few favorites:

“Companies trying to replicate all their data between data centers may find it’s like trying to force Cow-straw_design a cow through a drinking straw: everything isn’t going to fit.  Steelhead appliances greatly reduce the bandwidth requirements, just sending the fresh milk across the WAN since we’ve seen the rest of the cow before.”

“Tiering your storage for DR purposes is like picking which of your possessions to save from a burning house, a really horrible compromise that doesn’t solve the problem.  Riverbed allows you to protect everything at once, so it’s safe in the event of a disaster.”

“Buying more bandwidth to make room for replication is like building a completely new national highway system right next to the one we already have.  It would be extremely difficult to do, insanely expensive, and instantly double the cost of ongoing maintenance.  The real solution is to more efficiently use what you already have, prioritizing and reducing traffic, and minimizing congestion and collisions.”

 Vcr“The challenge of backing up data in each branch is like the pain of having to purchase a VCR for every house in America, and making everyone drive to a video store, hoping it’s easy to findMartini the movie they had in mind, and also hoping it doesn’t get lost or damaged in the hot car.  High-speed streaming, on-demand video services like Netflix are the future, reducing cost, hassle, complexity, and risk.  Whitewater is like the Netflix of enterprise cloud backup and archive.”

 So, enough about me, what do you do for a living?  Want another drink?

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