11th Oct, 2019
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How do you measure marketing efforts in parity with the investments done?Are you partners putting in an equivalent amount of time and efforts to promote your products?
Are their efforts enough for your business or what is the scope of improvement?
These questions are surely a whirlwind that traps even the soundest of marketing function.
Not surprisingly – 60% of marketing development funds are left unused on a quarterly basis, the results of Worldwide Channel Survey claims. Besides, ineffective MDF Fund Allocation & claim processes other challenges like event calendar clashes, digital immaturity of partners, duplicated leads/account management, convoluted auditing process are some top market challenges that has only result – below par market penetration and audience reach.
Surely lack of quantifiable performance planning and reporting, non-existent partner marketing investment, profitability and impact forecasting model can be a death nail for your business growth.
Identifying the gaps
We agree that the partner ecosystem is a complex web that is driven by individual product focus, territories impacting their contribution to sales. The web only gets intensified with global business expansion and widening competition arena. Often, partners lack desired skill for marketing your product despite being provided critical marketing collaterals, fed with industry trends and insights and even providing solid training! Looking at it from the opposite angle, one realises that it is indeed difficult to 100% focus on one vendor’s marketing program when you are marketing for multiple vendors. The focus undeniably is to sell what is selling fast and fast-track your coffers.
Further, cloud, IoT, device-as-a-service besides other new technologies are constantly revamping the face of marketing. A company’s business plan, besides considering technology disruptions now also considers the effect of globalisation and local industry trends. ‘Customized’ and ‘personalised’ are increasingly becoming the marketing keywords with the idea of ‘glo-cal’ gaining wide acceptance and adoption, which is nothing but maintaining the local, personal feel, while offering nuanced services globally. Indeed, an enormous agenda which is possible only via collaborative partner-led approach.
Making it Easy
Effective management of a diverse channel partner ecosystem requires an Integrated Partner Management solution. A Partner Marketing Concierge service that serves as a key marketing enablement service to help partners effectively drive and measure the effectiveness of marketing activities. It is a great mechanism to increase adoption rates of partner marketing programs and to boost partner engagement and loyalty levels.
At the micro-level, the service enables partner marketing assessments that helps in understanding individual challenges, identify gaps in the marketing and sales strategies of partners and the business, and work on the specific areas of improvement via training and skill-set building. This also help service providers offer better support to the partners to help them better sell their products/services. The service ensures that the partners actually use the marketing tools and resources (financial or otherwise) made available to them. Essentially, providing demand creation support to them oriented towards meeting your business needs. This shall ideally cover an integrated multi-touch marketing campaign to build sales pipeline by enabling
- End-to-end visibility: Transparent tracking and MDF fund utilisation for ongoing partner engagement, helping to build stickiness
- A unified solution: Allowing partners to access customised digital assets, as well as create and execute tailored campaigns
- Comprehensive Partner Performance Reporting: Giving you the perspective you need to define partner reactivation or upskilling strategies
- Drive adoption of partner programs & campaigns: Ensuring effective leverage of marketing programs
Picking the right Partner Marketing Concierge model
The spectrum of sales enablement is so vast and varied that a right Partner Marketing Concierge model is a matter of intense deliberation and evaluation in tandem with business requirements. However, it must cater to the need of marketing advisory support and Marketing Development fund (MDF) management providing not only transactional support but also enabling partners on MDF.
The activities undertaken by a Marketing Concierge can be classified under various heads, combination of which or rather all of it may be considered depending on your business requirement.
Partner Management with engagement across
- MDF Planning and Utilization
- Campaign Management
- Calendarization of events and activity schedule
- Training and Enablement
- Strategic Support & Guidance across MDF claims and payments
- Net New lead acquisition
- Lead Management across sales/marketing CRMs
- Reach out to the leads at right time (via automated emails) and staying in touch with them regularly (by setting up lead nurturing drips)
- Pushing hot leads to partners measurement
Measurement & ROI Reporting
With respect to Concierge reporting, following are the performance reports and metrics (indicative) used by the service provider.
- MDF Utilisation Status ad Impact
- Partner Performance
- Campaign Scorecard
- Campaign ROI
- Feedback & Insights
In the absence of an expert Partner Marketing Concierge, the web of partners is only going to choke the business. As you plan your next partner program or your next budget year, consider the role of the Partner Marketing Concierge and how it can help you more effectively shape your programs and provide proactive and reactive support for your partners.
Want to know more about selecting right partner? Post your suggestion and queries in the comments section below.