According to a recent report by Sirius, “channel marketers report that less than 20% of their partners regularly participate in demand generation efforts.” Other surveys show that partners use less than 10% of materials provided by software publishers they work with. Wonder what’s driving this lack of interest in your channel marketing program?
- A crowded landscape. Based on surveys conducted by The Partner Marketing Group in 2015 and 2016, more than 67% of software and technology resellers sell more than one publisher’s products. Marketing programs that don’t recognize this, and don’t provide relevant materials or incentives to help partners stand out with your products, will yield poor returns.
- Limited resources. If your channel consists mostly of small to medium resellers, their resources—particularly for marketing—are likely very limited. Inconsistent programs, outdated content, and campaigns that are difficult to execute, will result in your materials being ignored.
- Not enough training. Just throwing an email template out there or posting a few sales sheets for download won’t work unless you show your partners how, when, why and where to effectively promote the pieces and programs you create. Remember, many of your partners may not have an internal marketing team at all, let alone possess advanced knowledge of today’s marketing best practices across multiple marketing channels.
- Competition (with you). If you have a direct sales force, be prepared to have to work harder to win loyalty from your channel. From our experience, competition with your direct sales force is the number one reason channel partners give for not aggressively marketing a publisher’s solutions.
Look at your own channel programs. Are you struggling with any of these challenges? Do you regularly survey your channel to find out what they need and what they think of what you’re providing? You’re spending money on your programs, take the time to review them—internally and with your channel partners—to make sure you get the ROI you expect.
Need help? The Partner Marketing Group specializes in building channel marketing and engagement programs, training and workshops, and social media and demand generation campaigns to enable and empower your channel’s marketing success.