Winning the hearts and minds of your channel reps

Posted by Dan Kelly

When it comes to increasing your channel sales and driving the loyalty and focus you need from a sales partner, it’s important that your business is front of mind.

You need to forge a relationship with your channel, built on an understanding of their needs, and help them to overcome challenges and barriers they might face when selling your products.

Understand your channel’s challenges

When trying to forge a relationship with your channel partners, communication is key. Not only with stakeholders and decision makers within a company, but also with the sales staff who will be working on your behalf.

Talk to your channel directly. This might sound simplistic, but getting actual face-to-face contact with the people you’re looking to work with is crucial and, sometimes, overlooked.

Taking the time to talk allows you to understand the challenges of the people trying to sell your products and services. You need to understand their needs, in their terms, in order to work out what perceived barriers sales staff have when it comes to selling your products and services.

Provide support

Understanding your channel partner allows you to provide the support that is going to be the most beneficial and well received. Anything you do to support your channel partners, from training through to incentives, should tie into their objectives. Not only can the right support help to generate more positive results for you, it also helps to build trust and a relationship between you and your channel partner.

Talk to your channel directly. This might sound simplistic, but getting actual face-to-face contact with the people you’re looking to work with is crucial and, sometimes, overlooked.

See our channel incentive schemes

Your aim should be to make life easier for your channel, making it easier for them to sell your products. This might mean providing a hub for easy access to product information, or simple ‘cheat sheets’ to serve as prompts for sales staff.

Understanding your channel also means learning more about what makes sales teams tick, and what rewards and incentives they’d be most inspired by. This can be a huge help in not only driving the performance of a team, but also improving the overall effectiveness of the rewards and incentives you offer, as they are driven by genuine insight into your channel.

Maintain relationships

The support you offer your channel partners should avoid a ‘start-stop’ approach, wherever possible.

A longer program, which provides several different touch points, helps you to maintain communication channels and continually provide support to a channel partner.

Channel incentives can be used to draw attention to your brand, products and services, and are a great way to grab the attention of sales teams. You can then build from an incentive, using other activities to grow and develop your relationship with a channel.

We are CR Worldwide

Brands of all types trust us with their Channel Incentives

See how our channel incentive schemes can help your business

Consider using tools such as incentive travel to create lasting memories and to help forge relationships with channel staff. This can help build memories and friendships that create a fantastic foundation for a working relationship, as well as creating a link between channel staff and your brand.

Providing training, such as a series of smaller microlearning experiences to build skill sets, demonstrates you’ve taken an active interest in a team’s professional growth and development.

Helping you build a relationship with your channel partners

Building an ongoing relationship with your channel allows you to help your products and services to stand out from the competition.

A program of activity, based on a deeper understanding of your channel’s needs and obstacles, with consistent contact and evaluation, can help you build a stronger, long-lasting relationship.

At CR Worldwide, we can quickly design, launch and optimize effective channel incentive programs that drive increased sales for your business. These are:

Easy to implement — Our turnkey MyRewards platform can be tailored to suit your business needs, meaning you can be ready to implement an incentive scheme quickly.  

Easy to use — Our platforms are designed so they’re easy to understand. This means your sales channel teams can easily chart their progress to meet their targets, and view their potential towards winning rewards. 

Easy to manage — Our programs offer real-time reporting in participation with ROI and budget management. This makes managing, organizing and tracking the performance of your sales channel team easy for you, while allowing you to quickly assess the full value of your incentive scheme.

We’d love to excite, engage and inspire your sales channel partners with our channel incentive schemes. To speak to a member of our award-winning team:

As a founding partner of CR Worldwide in 2002, Dan helped develop the company from a start-up business into the multi-million global brand it is today.