Archive for June, 2011

It’s Hard to Teach a Partner to Fish When You’re Not Fishing Yourself

Beth Vanni – Vice President

There is a definite desire on the part of vendors to actively market their technology to business decision makers. In fact, in our recent Influencing the Influencer Study, 86% of vendors indicate that succeeding in selling business relevant solutions through partners is very important to them. Yet in this same study, 62% of vendors say that they have only achieved average results in this arena. Another 25% say they themselves do not have a strong focus on business decision makers, but rather are selling to IT decision makers — where the focus is on products, and not solutions.

This type of selling is in conflict with the sales and marketing direction many of these IT vendors give to their channel partners today;  namely, to be true solution providers actively try to penetrate new markets by demonstrating business value. The problem? How can vendors teach partners to do what they don’t have a fundamental sales and marketing commitment to do themselves? (more…)


June 23, 2011 at 3:44 pm 1 comment

Increasing Ease-of-Doing-Business and Partner-Facing Staffing May Go Hand in Hand

by Beth Vanni, Vice President

Given the complexity of today’s channel programs, especially among larger vendors, partners are looking for resources (people, portals) to help navigate their way.  Combine this dynamic with rapidly changing solution provider business models and we see a real need for vendor field reps to have a dedicated and responsive support system within their organizations to offload day-to-day program and transactional complexity in order to focus on critical activities such as business planning, and co-selling.

Despite the recent years of partner-facing staff streamlining and cut-backs, vendors who are invested in building their channel productivity are also willing to make the necessary high-touch investments in the staff necessary to properly profile, plan and provide local support to partners through the addition of inside sales staff and help desk functions. They are realizing that while EODB is a key initiative and partners want to eliminate as much complexity (read “cost”) as possible, in order to garner partner trust, loyalty and investment during major market transitions they have to provide high-touch people based support. Helping partners make a business model transition or invest more deeply in specialization or technical certifications requires trusting, local, hands-on relationships – and always has. The ‘next generation” partner account manager (substitute your title) requires a level of business savvy that can be better addressed by dedicated partner facing staff who are adept at anticipating business model changes, measuring loyalty, and navigating the strategic aspects of the relationship. (more…)

June 3, 2011 at 4:29 pm Leave a comment

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