Are You Investing in the Right Channel Partners?

In our first webcast of the Channel Marketing series we discuss how to predict which of your partners will help you succeed, and which will hold you back as the market shifts towards everything as a service.

May 5, 2015 // Chris Kenton

chisbecwarThe first interview in our series on The Channel’s Biggest Marketing Challenges is with? Chris Becwar,? Senior Director of Marketing at? CCI Global Channel Management. Chris is an expert on channel partner enablement, incentives and performance management, and we discuss these topics in the context of all the disruption driven by cloud migration. Which of your partners will? help you? succeed, and which will hold you back? as the market shifts towards everything as a service??

 

 

I conducted this interview with Chris from the road, so there are a couple of points in the video where there’s some background noise, but it’s fleeting and doesn’t? encroach on Chris’s important? insights about everything from identifying the right channel partners to the questions you need to ask to predict whether or not they’ll help you succeed.

Just a few of the best points from Chris Becwar:

  • It’s only a matter of time before the marketing cloud extends beyond the four walls of the supplier, into the massive network of channel partners. The Channel Market Cloud.
  • Majority of channel organizations are still managing channel incentives and MDF programs via an Excel spreadsheet, which gives a big advantage of data insight and visibility to companies investing in? more advanced partner management systems.
  • Traditional focus on channel partner investment have almost solely been based on past performance in closing revenue. But partners stuck with? the lens of past performance are in the process of destroying their companies, because they are continuing to fund the partners most opposed to innovative new solutions? based on subscription based revenue.

If you stick with the past, you are moving in the direction of killing your business.

  • The name of the game today? investing? dollars in the right partners. To be successful, you need strong analysis of performance data that goes beyond? top line revenue:
    • What percentage of your channel partner’s revenue is recurring?
    • What capacity does your partner have to go to market with modern marketing methods–ie: not just bundling IT packages, but developing solutions.
    • How many marketing resources do you have on staff?
    • How many opportunities is your sales team getting into the pipeline each month?
  • Technology decisions are migrating outside of IT. The companies that are growing are those that are able to engage and sell to business line managers. People like the heads of field services, mid-level marketing managers, even field sales reps. These are people with typically low levels of technical expertise, but understand the business value that must be developed.
  • Some of the best metrics for measuring channel partners:
    • What is your customer service expertise?
    • How well are you able to manage the customer relationship after the initial on-boarding
    • How well can you sustain customer relationships over time to reduce churn?
    • As you’re ramping your business, are financially strong enough to? survive the transition of your revenue model to support a large number of subscribed customers on monthly recurring revenue?

 


  • Chris Kenton
    May 5, 2015

    Thank you, Chris, for sharing your time and insights. I was worried about the video quality and mortified that I had to conduct the interview from outside a cafe on a busy street, but Mitchell and his team managed to minimize the audio distractions, and your perspective just speaks volumes about your experience. Thank you!

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