You don’t merely invest in channel marketing for partners to become cash cows.
With top tier partners generating more than 70% of all channel revenues (csoinsight, 2017), getting the most from your channel partners is difficult and with good reason.
Imagine a real estate agent. A real estate agent doesn’t sell one house; they sell several. We can apply the same reasoning to your technology partners and resellers. Often, they have a broad portfolio of products.
Therefore, a common problem arises amongst channel marketers. ‘How do we get our partners to prioritise our product?’. Thus, the main aim of your channel marketing strategy needs to prioritize gaining more mindshare amongst your partners.
THREES METHODS TO ACHIEVE GREATER MINDSHARE
Thankfully, through working on several channel marketing campaigns, we have several methods you can utilise to achieve this.
1) Build Greater Awareness
Now, this may seem like a no-brainer. But think about it?
Most of the time, there is usually some obstruction between you and your resellers such as Channel/Partnership Manager. If this is your only method of communication, you will likely have very little visibility with your partner’s sales reps.
To achieve more mindshare, you need to go straight to the source. Your channel marketing strategy needs to target the reps themselves. This is a direct way of ensuring that they are receiving notifications concerning your current incentives.
2) Easy to use program
Again, this may come across as a no-brainer. However, too often we see channel program portals that vendors are perfectly happy with, but are confusing or cluttered, or have valuable information so buried that it’s difficult to find.
Remember, your reps may have 20 or 30 more channel programs vying for their attention. Your program should offer brief, clear messaging with portals which possess intuitive navigation encouraging registration and participation. Bottom line: Keep it simple.
3) Personalised Incentives
Today, the most significant trend across the customer journey is personalisation. We see it at every stage. If you want to achieve more mindshare amongst your partners, your channel marketing strategy needs to offer highly personalised incentives.
Have you considered that when it comes to motivating us to work harder, we tend to respond to different incentives depending on our personalities? Granted, most people enjoy a monetised reward for their efforts. But that’s not necessarily the be-all, end-all for every personality type.
To be able to personalise your incentives, you must learn who your reps are. Invest time in discovering;
– Reseller Industry Focus;
– Areas of Specialisation;
– Best selling product; and
– Marketing activities run
Information such as this will be hugely beneficial when tailoring your incentive program. Having established a closer relationship with the resellers, you have the opportunity to ask them outright what incentives motivate them to work harder.
Now, I can sense you may feel slightly overwhelmed at the thought of gathering, ordering and storing this information. Thankfully, there is a wide range of Channel Incentives And Program Management (CIPM) software available that can help you.
Channel incentives and program management solutions automate and scale channel incentives across a broad set of partners. This gives you the ability to focus on personalising incentives for each partner.
Implementing these three steps will ensure your channel marketing strategy gains you more mindshare amongst your partners.