Groundhog Day is right around the corner, and it won’t be long before we wake Punxsutawney Phil from a sound slumber to make his yearly weather prediction. If your channel is feeling a little bit stagnant, it may seem like your channel partners have also gone into hibernation this winter.
If that’s the case, you may need to make a few changes to your program to help motivate your partners and arm them with what they need to accelerate channel sales in the year ahead. Follow our tips below to wake up partners who may be asleep on the job.
1. Personalize to their preferences.
Remember that your channel partners are individuals with their own personal preferences and working styles. By personalizing your approach to meet each partner’s unique needs and preferences, you can ensure that all of your partners are actively engaged on the channel.
One of the best ways to get started is to learn which types of content best resonates with your partners. Review your channel analytics to measure your return on engagement and to see what your top performing pieces of content are. This will help indicate which content topics and formats are most popular with your audience. You can also dive deeper by chatting with partners directly to garner more information about their content preferences, as well as where and how often they prefer to communicate.
2. Make it worth their while.
If your channel partners have been particularly quiet lately, you should think of ways to motivate and re-energize them. One of the most successful methods is to hold a contest to see who can drive the most sales. Offer a prize, as well as recognition to the partner who sells the most in a certain period of time.
Because it’s fun and likely out of the norm, a contest will probably get your partners’ attention and should help encourage them to put in work and increase channel sales. You can leverage your PRM to evaluate sales performance indicators and reward your partners accordingly.
3. Provide them with proper support.
Your partners can only sell what they know, right? Make sure you arm them with engaging content to support their sales efforts and make their jobs easier. For example, training materials on your products, important company details, and sales collateral, such as playbooks and white papers, should all be easily accessible to your partners on the channel.
Additionally, you should make yourself available to answer questions as they come up. Even if you upload all of the supporting documents that your partners might need, they may have clarifying questions that they need you to address.
4. Have an open communication channel.
In order to jump-start engagement on your channel, you should encourage open communication on the platform and utilize your PRM to keep your partners informed on what’s new at your organization. Communicate with your channel partners directly to personalize interactions and inspire them to be more active. By staying active on the channel yourself and encouraging open communication, you can spark conversations and increase engagement.
5. Re-demonstrate your commitment to them.
It may simply be time to remind your partners that it’s a partnership, you’re there for them, and you want to work together to accelerate channel sales in the year ahead. You can re-demonstrate your commitment to your channel partners by maintaining an informative, engaging channel that’s chock-full of great resources to help them get the job done.
Although channel partnerships can be challenging to navigate at times, they’re also tremendously beneficial for both sides when approached correctly. Download the Allbound Partner Relationship Management Guide to learn more about managing and enhancing your partner relationships to help take your channel sales to the next level.