As a reseller, you’re undoubtedly doing everything you can to build a successful business and grow your sales. Not only does doing so ensure your business remains profitable (and you remain in business), but it also helps you qualify for lucrative vendor incentives and partner VIP programs. These programs can give you access to additional revenue streams, as well as opportunities for bonuses, marketing support, additional training and more.
While it may seem like the magic formula to accessing these benefits is to simply hit your sales goals on a consistent basis, the reality is that it’s often easier said than done. Making sales can, at times, be a complex and drawn-out process — and that’s only after you get a qualified lead and make the initial sales pitch. Becoming a superstar sales channel partner often requires a bit more effort than simply getting and following up on leads and making the sale, but when you put the effort into doing so, everyone wins. In fact, there are some ways that you can become a most valuable reseller that will grow both your business and your relationship with your sales partner.
Use Professional Collateral
It’s highly likely that your channel partner offers a wide array of professionally produced sales and marketing collateral for resellers to use; in most cases, that collateral comes directly from the vendor itself. By customizing these pre-developed pieces with your specific information for your customers, you not only save time and money, but you also present a more professional image to your potential customers, who will feel more confident knowing that you are working directly with the vendors and have accurate information. If you aren’t sure what type of collateral is available, ask your vendor partner for some guidance.
Take Advantage of Training
Technology advances at a rapid pace, and keeping up with the changes and developments often requires ongoing training, which allows you to more effectively meet your customers’ needs. Most channel partners offer vendor-approved training to help ensure that resellers have the knowledge and skills they need to effectively sell and service their products. Training can also help your staff earn advanced certifications, which not only improves the service you’re able to offer, but also helps your business remain compliant with certain regulations with both the vendor and clients.
For instance, if you plan to seek contracts with the federal government, you will need to provide proof that your staff maintains specific certifications. Thanks to vendor training, you can meet those requirements and potentially grow your business. If your partner offers training, take advantage of it and stay ahead of the curve while better meeting your customer needs.
Act Like Inside Sales Professionals
One common complaint among resellers is they often feel as if they are treated differently than the vendor’s inside sales team. Therefore, vendors are well served to make sure their channel partners and resellers feel as if they are on equal footing with inside sales representatives, but it’s also important for resellers to behave like they work directly for the vendor as well. This means networking with their partners and vendor contacts, building strong relationships, and focusing on keeping the lines of communication open and staying up-to-date on vendor products and offers. When you show your partners they are a priority to you, you will be a priority to them.
Use Support Resources
Your channel partner is there to help you, so take advantage of their services, whether it’s registering deals with vendors, assistance upselling and cross-selling products, or working more effectively with existing customers. Your channel partner has the resources to help you, so don’t be afraid to use them to grow your business.
Focus on Simplicity
One of the best ways to sell technology is to express to your customers how easy it is to use. No one wants to invest in an infrastructure that is unnecessarily complex or challenging to use. Work with your partner to develop ways of emphasizing simplicity at every step. You should be able to articulate how easy the system is to buy, set up, use and support — and be able to follow through on those promises of simplicity.
Becoming a channel marketing superstar requires focusing on your customers and growing your business, but it’s also important to build relationships with your partners and use the resources that are available to you. When you do, you will become a VIP in no time.
Cher Zavala is a content co-ordinator who assists in contributing quality articles on various topics. In her free time she also enjoys hiking, traveling and getting to know the world around her. Cher has built up many strong relationships over the years within the blogging community and loves sharing her useful tips with others.