It’s budget time again and your mind is no doubt running through the laundry list of must-haves for a solid 2016 channel marketing strategy. From Partner portal UX to marketing automation and MDF management, there’s a lot to consider. But before solidifying plans, think about how channel support vendors help reach goals and drive more demand through your Channel.
According to a 2015 report, a lack of in-house experience is one of the biggest obstacles to overcome in B2B marketing strategy and execution. Third party vendors work with a variety of diverse Vendors and Partners giving them unique line of sight into Partner Programs, Channel Marketing and Partner communication strategies. This level of experience brings answers to your questions, ideas to your team and just might be the boost you need to drive more demand in 2016.
Access to Tools and Technology
According to the Content Marketing Institute, access and expertise with tools and technology is a significant issue for 20% of B2B marketers. As channel marketing becomes more automated, Vendors must keep up with tech trends or risk being overlooked for more tech-savvy competitors. Not sure which channel marketing automation tool to go with for content or social syndication? Looking to build a custom Partner portal? A successful strategy needs up-to-date technology and integrated applications, but those things cost money and require training. Third parties know best-in-practice technology, have access to tools and serve as an expert training resource for Channel marketing teams.
Despite in-house VOC collection efforts, it’s not always easy to understand how you’re being difficult in the eyes of a Partner. Outsourcing your Channel strategy brings the fresh point of view needed to shift Channel Programs towards fulfilling your Partners needs. And, when Vendors address the actual needs of Partners, demand generation follows.
Save Time and Money
Lack of in-house experience is a significant obstacle because training takes manpower, time, and money. Your team simply may not have the bandwidth to learn and requiring them to make room on already full plates decreases productivity. Add to that a steep learning curve and suddenly your strategy and execution suffers as you wait for employees to ramp up. A third party vendor is a great alternative to overworking employees or waiting months for the acquisition of trained skills. Third parties dedicate themselves solely to your project and their expertise eliminates lengthy and costly training cycles.
The time and money saved by hiring a third party is a by-product of the third party’s experience. Don’t lose sleep trying to reinvent the wheel or learning what third parties already know – grow your business faster by leaving it to the experts.
Photo credit: The SHI blog, Gaffaney's Total Office Support