Building out a high-performance channel partner program can be a game changer for many organizations.
You reap all the benefits of a team of specialist sales professionals who are focused and motivated to sell your product or service… without all of the overhead. However, that doesn’t mean they don’t need support. In fact, to truly optimize their performance and profitability, you’ll need to invest in good training, powerful sales resources and lots of communication.
The very nature of channel partners - a professional relationship built on trust, loyalty and education - requires fluid communications between both parties, which can be a challenge to consistently accomplish. Not only that, but it's likely that your organization is just one of many vying for salespeople's attention.
When evaluating your channel partner program, ask yourself these questions:
- Are our partners able to easily access a central platform that contains metrics, marketing tools, demos, battlecards, FAQs, and key product information?
- Have we invested enough in training to ensure they understand the possibilities that our product can create for their prospects?
- What incentives can we offer for our partners that will exceed their expectations and drive true loyalty?
If you're having trouble answering any of these, then it's a sign that your program could be lacking structure, support and the right incentives — key components of every successful partnership.
Provide a centralized platform
Even keeping your in-house sales staff up-to-date with the latest marketing and product information can be a challenge. Product development, feature enhancements and market offers can quickly outpace your ability to keep your marketing resources current. That challenge is multiplied when managing channel partners. But it’s worth the effort, and can be critical to success. Every effective partner program relies on a high level of communication to effectively expand your market share.
Organizations that can master a tech platform to share resources and track metrics will find it easier to project a consistent message and maintain close relationships with their sales teams. This also allows your company to create and monitor the brand culture it wants its partners to exhibit when following and closing leads, and disseminate that material in a timely manner.
But, creating a portal is just the beginning. Salesforce, which is renown as a great tool for facilitating sales relationships, also recommends keeping a good rapport with your partner's sales team, as the more they communicate with your company, the more likely they are to recommend your product to customers. In a useful post here about effective channel partnerships, Salesforce also offers some great tips on designing a successful channel program.
Design great incentives for sales teams
In addition to communication, incentives are the bread and butter of any channel partner program. Erratic payout scales or handshake agreements can create doubt among your partners, which may cause their sales teams to shy away from pitching your product to their clients. Using your portal, make it clear what exactly the rewards are for certain achievements and allow these companies and salespeople to view their progress through the help of real-time metrics - an essential component of any partner program platform.
Having a clearly identifiable financial compensation system in place will not only create competitiveness among partners, but also inspire them to nurture more leads and finalize more deals. At the end of the day, your company's growth is closely tied to those it works together with.
Incentives that drive performance for every partner program
At Power2Motivate, we understand what motivates and engages sales professionals. We offer a number of different rewards and incentives programs to help drive sales, boost productivity and bring in revenue. Our custom-built incentive platforms are easily tailored to your brand identity, product offering, reporting requirements and partnership levels. Contact us today to find out how we can help keep both your in-house and external sales teams focused and motivated. We can set up a demo of Power2Motivate, so you can see for yourself just how impactful it can be.