Channel partner programs aim to motivate and engage channel partners to build more value for customers. Channel partnerships, when strong enough, can bring incredible growth to your business that could not be possible otherwise. Onboarding the best potential channel partners is fine, but how do you ensure the success of your partnership?
Zoom, the leading video conferencing platform, drove over 70% of the company’s growth through channel partners during Covid Pandemic. It was possible due to their channel partners’ referral program. This is how well-structured channel partner programs can make your partnership a success.
A channel partnership should be mutually beneficial. With every additional year of partnership, it becomes stronger and adds more value to your business. Therefore, it is essential to keep your channel partners motivated and loyal for a longer period.
What is a Successful Channel Partner Program?
A Successful channel partner program ensures that you and your partner are on the same page. Along with boosting your sales, it should add value to your B2B customers and end users. Motivation plays a significant role in keeping your partners committed. Most businesses believe that the commission they pay to their channel partners is enough to motivate them. They are mistaken here.
Consider your channel partner as your additional sales team. Put in every possible effort to make them perform splendidly. You need to invest money, time, and effort in your channel partner just like you invest in your internal salespersons. The efficiency and profitability of your channel partners depend on their lifetime value. To increase their lifetime value, it is essential to keep them encouraged.
Motivation is a principal factor for a successful channel partner program. It helps a business utilize its partners to the maximum. Here are the top 5 motivational drivers for channel partners:
1. Money & Rewards
Money is the most common factor of motivation for every business. To keep your channel partners motivated for a long time, you must invest in them. Make sure that your investment is in correspondence with the efforts your partners put into your business.
The best way to use money as a motivating factor is to help your partners reduce their marketing costs. You can do it through joint funding for advertisements, joint ventures, etc. Don’t just throw money at your channel partners. But also ensure that you can measure the impact of this money.
Investing in your channel partners is the greatest way to make them feel valued. Don’t think of this investment as your loss. Partners who are valued become loyal and loyal partners can bring incredible growth to your business. Adding rewards or incentives to your channel partner program encourages your partners, even more, to perform better. RewardPort, being the top rewards company, can help you build the perfect reward/incentives program for your channel partners.
2. Access to High-Quality Sales Tools
Most businesses do not provide their channel partners with high-quality professional sales tools. As channel partners are also driving sales to your business, you must offer them the same tools that your internal sales team has. If your channel partner is selling your products in new innovative ways, you might need to support them even more than your direct sales team. Make sure to provide top-quality selling tools, such as competitive data sheets, sales scripts, testimonials, usual brochures, etc.
Your products should be convenient for them to sell. Let us understand it with an example. Suppose company A has two channel partners named B and C. A must go to 10 places to sell B’s product and only 2 places to sell C’s product. Which one would company A prefer? It would be C’s product.
It’s not about going to places, you just need to understand how a complex system can make the task difficult for your partners. Sales tools are necessary but not enough. You must also provide the necessary sales support to your partners. Make sure that they can contact your qualified staff whenever they have some technical or other issues. To get the most out of your channel partnership, you need to put in the maximum effort.
3. Education Programs and Certifications
Everyone loves to learn while earning and so do your channel partners. Education programs that provide theoretical knowledge and practical skills to your channel partners can be extremely motivating. You can design education programs that give your partners a thorough knowledge of your products/services.
These programs can include texts, videos, presentations, etc. To make these programs interesting, you can add challenging tests in between. This ensures that your partner is aware of your product’s features, and they can answer any question asked by the end customers. But how do you encourage your partners to enrol in these programs? Just add some relevant incentives to it. RewardPort can help you build an incentive program that rewards your partners for achieving different milestones under your education program.
Adding certifications to your program can make it more exciting for your channel partners. Just make sure that the certification is interesting, but also challenging at the same time. It is important to give your partners a sense of pride when they complete a certification. Many companies keep such certifications as one of the eligibility requirements for their channel partners.
4. Happy Customers
It makes your channel partners happiest when they get repeat customers because of your product. For this, you need to make sure that your end customers always love your products or services. Happy end user means happy channel partner and consequently, happy you. It can be one of the biggest motivating factors for your channel partners.
5. More Leads
Passing on qualified leads to your channel partners also acts as a great motivating factor in a channel partnership. You need to understand your customers first. Understanding the interests of your customers helps you devise a better marketing plan. When your partner gets more qualified leads from your business, they automatically are motivated to stay loyal to you.
Benefits of a Successful Channel Partner Program
A successful channel partner program ensures stronger partnerships, which further has several advantages as follows:
- Expand your brand’s reach as you also get access to your partner’s customer base.
- Generate more qualified leads.
- Reduce customer acquisition costs as your channel partner is also promoting your product.
- Boost your revenue with indirect sales.
- Strong relationships with customers you get through your channel partner.
Rewards for Your Channel Partner Program
It is completely sensible to incentivize your channel partners’ efforts toward your business growth. Appreciating your partners for their commitment encourages them to stay loyal to you and perform even better in the future.
RewardPort can help you build a channel partner loyalty program keeping in mind the best practices. RewardPort makes your channel partner programs more engaging with gamification. Additionally, your long-term channel partner programs need continuous monitoring to stay updated for new situations.
Continuous improvements allow your channel partner program to remain relevant and ahead of the competition.
Frequently Asked Questions: -
A channel partnership is an initiative where two businesses come together to sell each other’s products and services along with their own. There are many benefits of becoming a channel partner as listed below:
- Generate more qualified leads for your business and increase conversion rates.
- Reduce marketing costs.
- Reduce customer acquisition costs.
- Expand your market reach through channel partners.
The requirements for becoming a channel partner can vary for different companies. You can identify suitable companies and approach them to become their channel partner.
You can start by identifying the relevant brands/businesses and understanding their requirements for channel partners. Also, various brands often launch channel partner schemes you can participate in.