Right about now each of us is thinking of our New Year's resolutions for our body, our mind, and our business.
So if "The Channel" decided to come up with resolutions what would they be? Go to the gym more? Stop working 80 hours a week? Probably not. Here's what I think "The Channel" would commit to for 2012, what do you think?
Learn to Communicate Better: Many of the vendors I speak to have a goal to better communicate with their partners. Not more often, not via flashier means, but BETTER. What the partners want, where and when they want it. Whether that's via a newsletter, LinkedIn, webinar, Twitter, or smoke signal; figure out what/where/when/how partners want to be communicated with and do just that.
Stop Wasting Money: Whether vendors spending money on resources for the partners or channel partners spending money on demand generation activities, test, test, test. Don't go all in until you figure out what your audience wants. It's fine to try a small sample or here's a thought....ask them! You have loyal partners, you have some loyal customers. Ask what resources they would like or how they would like to be communicated with.
Trim Some Fat: Vendors, we all have those partners that contribute nothing but still take some of our resources. We want to say we have so many partners but if 10% of those partners bring nothing to the table you're not doing yourselves any favors. Partners, the same is true for you. Do you have some vendor products you brought on because a customer asked for their products years ago? Get rid of them. Both of you are better off focusing on the partnerships that are mutually beneficial. Where 1+1=3.
Be Proactive: Every single one of us, channel or not, are so incredibly busy and find ourselves fighting fires instead of being proactive and thinking how we can grow/change/develop our business in 2012. We think how we can keep our head above water, not how we can plan for the future. This year, resolve to take some time to think, to create, to innovate.
We're taking our own advice especially #4 so look forward to some cool innovations and announcements from Channel Maven in 2012. From the Channel Maven Consulting team have a very Happy New Year and a Happy Channel to all in 2012!