Motivating a channel partner, such as one of your distributors or resellers, is different to motivating your own workforce. When encouraging your own staff, your priority is to focus them on your company values or business goals like customer service, sales performance or even product quality, so that they can relay these principles directly to your customers.
Your channel partners require a much more straightforward approach. Specifically, a product they can sell easily, to maximise profits with minimum fuss.
For the best results, you need to inspire your channel partners to sell your products and services, over and above those of your competitors – who will also be clamouring for attention. Your priority needs to be ensuring they are incentivised to concentrate on your offerings and equipped to provide a best practice service when it comes to selling them.
The key is to develop a strategy to engage with them. The good news is, you can engage in a number of ways:
In order to get this across and make an impact with your channel partner, develop your relationships. The more contact you can facilitate the better: it will keep you and your products top of mind, and will allow you to understand your partner better. Regular communication develops relationships and will lead to your partner caring more about your business and wanting it to do well. Incentives put this into practice, as they give you an excuse to keep in touch with partners in a positive way. So not only will your partners benefit, but you will too.
As a channel partner, if you had to choose between an easy sell and a hard sell, it’s pretty obvious which is more appealing. In a crowded marketplace, if you can make it easy for your partners to sell your services they’re likely to sell more of them. Make sure they have everything they need, from pricing to sales brochures, and make the pricing systems straightforward. If it’s easy for your partner to calculate profits and see exactly what’s in it for them, they’re going to be all the more motivated to do a good job for you.
Logic suggests the more partners you have, the more opportunities there are for your products to reach the end-user. But this doesn’t necessarily always happen. The more partners you have, the harder these relationships can be to manage and performances levels will drop. Make sure your channel team can efficiently manage and support your partners; anything beyond this will lead to wasted time and effort. Fewer partners, performing well, will have a much more positive impact on your sales figures.
A well-managed and motivated channel is a force to be reckoned with and will help to make your business a success.
We’d love to help you engage, motivate and inspire your team with our innovative Channel Incentives services. To speak to a member of our award-winning team, call us on 0370 405 2020, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or make a quick enquiry to find out how to drive your business performance today.