Channel Marketplace Blog

Have Channel Sales Techniques Gotten Any Smarter?

[fa icon="calendar"] Apr 28, 2020 8:12:20 AM / by Vaughn Mordecai

Vaughn Mordecai

Without a moment’s notice the way that we sell and do business just changed.

And, it’s difficult to see when we’ll get back to the “old ways” if ever.

  1. Events have been cancelled for the year. Will the event budgets ever be the same in the future?
  2. We can’t sell in-office, person-to-person. When will we feel comfortable visiting, or having visitors again?
  3. Technology companies (and a million others) are working from their homes. I’m unclear just how useful the phone’s become as a method for selling. When you went home, did your ‘phone number’ follow you?

If I asked for a list of the business changes that happened almost instantly, I’m sure that pages and pages could be written about what changed in short order. From supply chains and stock, oil prices, stock prices, furloughs, government regulations, and sales and marketing techniques, a book could be written about how a million things are all playing a part in what’s changed and when things will “go back to normal.” It’s a butterfly effect, unlike any we’ve ever seen.

I’ve been asked by several people recently, how different vendors are handling their channel sales process given all the uncertainty. Either by design (we like to think we’re smart – but who could have predicted this); or by sheer luck (it’s probably a combination of both); bChannels was aligned well to the instant change in how partner ecosystems are acting NOW, and I’ve had multiple people ask about our view.

Take a look at this triangle. We call it “The Triangle” (surprise), and it’s the fastest growing segment of our business. There’s a reason why.

Intelligent-Index

Why is “The Triangle” our quickest growth area? The background noise around many of our clients, went away. Channel sales, marketing, and operations all had to get back to the basics and it’s produced a simplified end-to-end process, at least for the short and medium-term.

Partner Segmentation = Channel Operations

Partner Recruitment = Channel Sales

Digital Partner = Partner Marketing

Each of the channel players wants to keep working and do good things. They’re invested in their companies and these areas represent some of the best drivers of quickly delivered revenue.

So, how do you move revenue in the current environment with these basics as the focus? You get smart about the simple things. It’s not complicated.

  1. Segment your partners
  2. Enable the current partners that can drive your future success, and reactivate or recruit the ones that will bring you from point A to point B.
  3. Then, help them market to their customers (through-partner marketing).

Many of the tech vendors have committed, significantly, to the channel. Now is the most important time in the past 10 years to assist partners in driving their customers to your product offerings. They can’t meet in person, so they need to leverage digital sales techniques to get wins. You can’t enable all of them, so you need to have the right ones on the pitch. To do that, you need to scout out the ones that can put scores on the doors. The bChannels view on the digital process looks a lot like this chart; and it’s hugely important for this year.

Partner-Engage

In essence, you:

  1. Understand your partner’s capabilities, where they plan to be in the future (intent), and their willingness to engage with you. This we call segmentation.
  2. Partner engagement, guides where you should focus efforts on prioritizing current partners, reactivating the non-transacting partners, and recruiting to fill gaps in your ecosystem. When you have capable partners, who intend to go where you’re going, and willing to engage with you, then you can enable the right partners to faster revenue.
  3. Final step, the digital through-partner marketing, when properly executed starts to look like this:

Digital-Through-Partner-Marketing

Interesting how the more things change the more things stay the same. Though our fundamental techniques have gotten smarter, better, and faster; the nuts and bolts of what needs to be done, and the end goals, the revenue aspirations, have not changed. And, to find success as a business and career growth as an individual, who doesn’t need a little more revenue in their business right now? So our recommendation, SMARTLY, get back to the basics.

As you’d guess, bChannels has a SMART set of offerings that drive the revenue you’re looking for. We’ll help you:

  • Easily and quickly see who has the desired blend of capabilities in your existing partner ecosystems
  • Speed up the time to acquire new partners who have the right skills and focus
  • Ensure marketing investments are correctly executed and spending is aligned to the partners with the right skills and focus to make the most of your marketing dollars

Our proprietary techniques are unlike anything else available in the industry today. We use a unique approach to segmentation, reactivation, and digital through-partner marketing that will proactively identify the partners that are your best fit, engage them, and ensure they are marketing enabled for now and the future.

Topics: Channel Sales

Vaughn Mordecai

Written by Vaughn Mordecai

Vaughn Mordecai is a senior executive in bChannels and has 25 year experience leveraging data, insights, and intelligence to drive actionable outcomes for technology companies.  He has a background in research based technology solutions and channel consulting, and has been a key strategic driver in the development of the analytic techniques and statistical methodologies bChannels uses to conduct our partner segmentation and channel prioritization offerings.  Understanding what partners are capable of is fundamental to our client’s successes, and Vaughn was key in conceptualizing the solutions and segmentations we use to drive partner centric marketing, sales, and operational outcomes.