CMO Advisor – Making the Most of Channel Marketing


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These blogs will provide you with insights and opinions about partner relationship management from a strategic and a best practice perspective. We will also discuss RelayWare’s technologies and software and how they can be applied to help customers with common partner management challenges

I received an interesting enlightening communication today from IDC’s CMO Advisor Gerry Murray entitled “Making the Most of Channel Marketing”. I’ve reproduced much of it here with Gerry’s permission because IDC’s independent analysis confirms once again the importance of PRM for effective channel marketing and performance optimization recently highlighted in the Aberdeen report that can be downloaded from our home page.

A recent IDC study of large IT companies found that, on average, channel revenue was $3.7 billion. The average internal channel marketing staff of 53 managed nearly 22,000 partners, equating to $12 million of revenue per internal staff but only half a million dollar per partner.

Most shocking from the study — these organizations have an average of approximately 15,000 inactive partners. Active partners only constitute 31% of the channel mix, with the remaining 69% being inactive. Given the expense involved in recruiting channel partners and on-boarding their first sales, it is in the vendor’s best interest to identify the best partners across the entire partner population and enable them to step-up to higher levels of sales performance.

Bringing Customized Services and Tools into the Channel Marketing Process

For an organization to optimize a significant amount of revenue moving through its channels, it needs a dedicated system to automate partner relationships, not just sales and marketing activities. It’s imperative that organizations build scalable, full-service relationships with individual partners for the partners to be more effective marketers. This system will not be based on CRM or SFA or even newer marketing automation tools.

Traditional tools like customer relationship management (CRM) and sales force automation (SFA) solutions cannot effectively support customized channel marketing. Within a scalable online environment, customized channel marketing programs enable partners to select marketing activities based on their objectives, order their choice of marketing activities from a menu of options, pay for their selected marketing activities using an e-wallet that shows various co-funding options and account balance, and access to external marketing resources that have been pre-selected to execute the marketing activities that they have pre-scoped and estimated on a pay-for-performance basis.

Partner relationship management (PRM) portal solutions may integrate with these systems, but they still must have a dedicated set of tools that enable channel managers to effectively work with active partners and turn inactive partners active. Customized channel marketing provides turnkey marketing programs that enable partners to directly order and deploy traditional and digital marketing collateral and activities that best suit their needs from a pre-determined selection of inbound and outbound sales and marketing tools.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Mike Morgan
Mike has over 20 years of ICT, OA and CE channel sales and marketing management experience and is responsible for Relayware's global go-to-market strategy as well as the sales and marketing functions while overseeing the company's operations worldwide. Mike is recognized as one of the industry's leading experts in indirect go-to-market strategy best practice.


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