It is easy to argue that these companies merely sell an image. The modules, security software, servers, and IT solutions are mere brand names that become overpriced and make the investment a waste. Yes, Cisco, Dell, and IBM are all part of an elite group of companies that make products that continue to sell well, costing a bit more than lesser known brands' products, but you are investing in reliability with these products. When you buy a module or a server from Cisco, you pay the extra cash knowing the product will function and work for years to come. For instance, you might shell out a few grand on a set of new Cisco brand SFP modules, but you do so knowing the products are reliable and will function with various Ethernet setups.
Spend Money Where It Counts
Sure, the name comes at an extra cost, but so does losing the trust of your client. Say you start to see massive growth on your servers and decide it's time to expand. You buy more servers, set up high-tech performance testing, and give your engineers the tools to perform their jobs, but you purchase your security products from a less trusted manufacturer. Once your servers go up, your engineers discover a problem: a virus has gotten into the system and has taken the credit card information of each of your customers. Now, your plan to save money has backfired, costing you more because of all the customers you will lose.
Sometimes, it is better to spend the extra cash on trusted dealers' products than waste your money on a cheaper product. When you buy from respected dealers, you pay for quality. For example, if you buy Cisco SFP transceiver modules from trusted dealers, you pay for products that can handle faster data speeds with configurations you need.
The next time you think about cutting down on networking cost, don't. Pay the extra money and buy from a trusted dealer. You will find yourself satisfied and worry free when you do.