There are many benefits to creating a channel partner program. Acceleratingare just the top two benefits. However, creating a successful partner program is time-consuming and requires resources as well as detailed strategic planning. In this post, we will look into the reasons vendors need such programs and provide you with the guidelines for creating the ultimate channel partner program.
John Spiliotis, Senior Operating Advisor, LLR Partners
What Channel Partner Programs Are Meant to Do and Why Are They Needed:
- Partner programs define the requirements and associated benefits of doing business with the vendor.
- The intention of partner programs is to complement, as well as, advance the vendor’s go to market strategy.
- Drive growth by decreasing time to market and providing access to new competitive markets.
- Reduce customer acquisition costs.
- Eliminates the cost associated with training new sales teams.
- Best programs are designed in a way to adapt to future changes in business goals, products, and markets.
- Strategic channel partner programs take into consideration the vendor’s resources to ensure that program creation, delivery, and management are achievable.
Questions to Ask When Designing a Partner Program:
Before designing a channel partner program, you need to determine your answer to the following questions:
- Do you have a cohesive business goal and channel program strategy?
- If so, are your business objectives and channel strategy aligned?
- What are your expectations for developing channel partnerships with certain companies?
- How many channel partners do you plan to manage?
- Do you have the resources such as a partner portal to manage your channel partners?
Once you have a clear answer to the questions above, you are then ready to design, construct, and implement a channel partner program.
Tips for Designing a Sustainable Partner Program:
- Design your programs to meet your needs as well as those of your partners
- Don’t over-stuff your channel partner programs
- Engage with your partners often
- Keep engagement levels up by incentivizing and rewarding partner success
- Don’t over-promise
- Design with future growth in-mind
- Empower your partners by providing on-going training
- Provide partners with marketing, pre-sales, sales, and also post-sales support
- Grant partners access to all relevant marketing, sales, and documentation through a partner portal
- Perform regular evaluations in order to evolve and improve your partner programs
- Be open to strategy adjustments