To ensure a proactive and empowered channel that delivers double-digit revenue growth you need to create timely incentive programs and build a sound ecosystem for them to thrive.
Here are 3 Great Tips To Kickstart Channel Rep Performance
1. Refresh Your Content
Your direct sales reps are living your brand, but the channel partners have other companies they represent. Ensure your content has a fresh, proactive feel with the right CTA’s. Is your content direct? Does it need more visuals? Look at the usage rates and consider streamlining the content offerings to remove or combine rarely-used materials.
Have a consistent look and feel and ensure it is easily accessible through a simple channel program platform. Eliminate unnecessary steps for pulling content and make it a seamless process, so your channel reps can spend more time focused on selling your solution instead of downloading your competitors’ brochures.
2. Shake up Incentives
Channel sales reps are attracted to partners that present clear, obtainable, and fair incentives.
Reward reps for activities that might lead to sales. So if they conduct a demo or perform some other client activity, then give them a performance bonus. You’ll of course want to review their performance to be sure they’re closing at a good rate, but this is a great way to jumpstart the reps’ interest.
Review your sales incentives for clarity and fairness. If the channel rep community is clamoring for changes, then listen and make adjustments. Word will get out if you make rep-friendly adjustments.
The roll out matters. It’s your job to present incentive plans with clear language and to communicate effectively with the reps. Many programs have failed not because they don’t offer the chance for high earnings, but because the roll out was bungled.
Bundle together different types of promotions to increase rep activity. For example you could offer market development funds (MDFs) to build brand awareness, offer monthly contests, and incentives for finishing training modules or videos. Give the reps multiple ways to engage with you and earn.
3. Build a Community
The payoff for a social community for channel reps can take a little longer, but the dividends can be significant.
Consider building invitation-based content pages for channel reps. The purpose of such pages/forums is to provide a platform for the sharing of best practices, so you can build a knowledge base of immediate answers. Reps should dive into such communities to build a presence and set themselves up as a person who can fix problems and connect people together.
As the community grows it becomes a powerful value-add that channel reps can trumpet on their sales calls and visits. It’s a subtler “kickstart” then an incentive program, but it does help your brand stand apart and can make the sales easier for the rep.