IT Companies: Resolve to Evolve Your Channel in 2014
As the end of the year approaches, talk often turns to new year's resolutions. But how many of us actually stick with them? Instead, companies should look at how they are helping their channel evolve in 2014: What are your goals? How do they relate to your partners’ goals?
If you can’t answer that last question, you need to readjust your goals. Vendors have a huge opportunity to work closer with their partners, but it's important to know what your customer needs. In short, vendors must learn to better communicate to their partners without overwhelming them, enable partners to better market themselves and provide content for partners to leverage.
How, you ask? Here are some rules to follow:
- Create a governance policy to monitor what and how often things get communicated to partners via e-mail. If it’s not time-sensitive, it should go in a newsletter and on social. Also, remember how you communicate is as important as what you’re communicating. Identify the partners’ pain point in the first sentence of every e-mail, social post, newsletter and piece of content.
- Enable partners to better market themselves with campaign materials, social content, marketing platforms and One-2-One Partner Support. By teaching partners to fish, you are enabling their success—and yours—for the longer term.
- Content marketing is on the tip of every marketer’s tongue. Since partners have never been the strongest marketers, there is a huge opportunity to enable them here. What types of content will best help your partners? Ebooks, blogs, social posts, white papers, infographics or video?
How can you better help your channel to evolve? What are your biggest challenges for 2014?
Contributing blogger Heather K. Margolis, the Channel Maven, has led channel programs for major IT companies.