Boost Your BEST Channel Partners

 In Analytics and Insights

Let’s be honest.  Not all channel partners are created equal.  We obviously wish they were, but they’re just not.  It’s usually the 80/20 rule … 20% of your channel brings 80% of your revenue.  So how can your technology company drive demand for your high producing partners and make your revenue skyrocket?  How can you boost your best channel partners?

The answer seems easy… focus 80% of resources on the special 20%, so that you keep them in your top 20%.

Right now, most channel co-marketing programs require the partner to do all or most of the heavy-lifting.  Is it any wonder that partners do not execute your co-marketing campaigns?  Unless you’re their #1 vendor in a category, you’re just along for the ride at that trade show or seminar.

To get started, let’s review the facts according to CRN:

  • The majority of partners in the IT industry do not employ marketing people.
  • Over 65% of partners in a recent Everything Channel survey are dissatisfied to somewhat satisfied with leads supplied by vendors.*
  • IT vendors spend, on average, 3% of revenue on coop/Market Development Funds (MDF).*
  • About 21% of co-op/MDF spending went unclaimed.*
  • 67% of a partner’s new business revenue is generated from their existing customer base* – partners just are not good at finding new business!

Now according to Baptie & Company

  • Partners carry between 2 and 4 vendors in every product category
  • Partners drop or de-emphasize on average 2.5 vendors and 4.7 products per year (and 8 out of 10 partners won’t tell you if you’ve been dropped).

In essence, partner and vendor relationships are in a constant state of flux. So, how can vendors and partners improve relationships to grow and prosper?

Invest Market Development Funds in a Different Way to Boost Your Best Channel Partners

Here’s a radical idea:  grow together instead of apart by investing MDF dollars in a different way.

Boost your best channel partners with smarter demand generation – sales targets smartly identified using analytics and lead generation programs — to help you both grow.  Instead of relying on anonymous tools to produce campaigns, engage with your channel partners in an entirely different way.

Use channel marketing to work directly with those top partners to execute joint campaigns.  Better yet, execute those joint campaigns using content assets you created that align with the buying stages.

So what is the net result to spending the resources to boost your best channel partners?

In the long run, you’ll have better partner relationships, increased satisfaction, and higher loyalty.  You’ll finally have a measurable return on your MDF and best of all, higher sales for both your technology company and your best partners.

**”2010 State of the Market Survey”, Everything Channel

*The 2008 Survey: Vendor and Partner Attitudes to Key Channel Issues,” Baptie & Company

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