In his book “Change or Die,” author Alan Duetschman says that when faced with a challenge or a need to change, we like to think that the magic comes from discovering the right processes or series of events.
Although that seems like the most logical approach, it isn’t the most effective.
The biggest key to successful lasting changes is to associate with people – “who believe in you and in whom you believe.”
Do you believe in them? If not, it’s time to start building relationships that provide mutually beneficial results. It can be done when you focus first on providing value to your partners.
Managing a complex independent sales channel that satisfies the needs of every partner
gets more complicated each day. Partners are pulled in many directions by their own
business priorities and changing market conditions.
Internet shopping in both B2B and B2C markets is changing traditional selling strategies that relied on relationships and one-on-one interactions. Social media is helping customers gain tremendous knowledge — both positive and negative — about a product before a sales interaction even takes place.
In light of these changes, manufacturers are supplementing their channel sales and marketing efforts with their own direct marketing in the form of experiential events, promotions, social media, blogs and webinars. Distributors and dealers who own current customer information often use it for their own marketing and loyalty initiatives and risk competing with the messages customers hear from the manufacturer.
An added dimension of today’s channel programs is that many include bottom-line benefits to the distributors or dealers themselves: financing programs, extended warranties, purchase programs, samples, advisory councils and sales recognition.
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