One of the major challenges of building an effective channel marketing program is increasing partner engagement. Our State of Local Marketing Report, which is based off of data from more than 1,000 channel partner surveys, provides some insight into why so many partners are not engaged in marketing activity. Let’s take a quick look into this.
About 32% of channel partners don’t believe their corporate marketing program has any meaningful impact on their business. When partners don’t believe in the channel programs, naturally, engagement drops or stagnates. Another shocking revelation is that 50% of Channel Partners don’t understand marketing and feel its low priority for them. So the question becomes: how can you showcase the value of your corporate channel marketing program and help partners understand marketing to increase engagement?
Channel Partner Scorecard is a new solution that evaluates channel partners’ marketing performance and provides rules-based recommendations for optimizing their marketing execution in alignment with national strategy. One of the key benefits is that it can be leveraged to increase partner engagement. Here’s how:
1. Evaluate Channel Partner Marketing Performance
The first step in increasing channel partner engagement is benchmarking partners’ current marketing performance. This is an important step for you to be able to measure partner progress, and it gives you insight into how developed your partners’ current marketing knowledge is. Benchmarking is easy with Channel Partner Scorecard. An algorithm analyzes each partner’s marketing activity and scores their performance based on tactic usage, goal completion, and how it compares to their peers. Partners receive a score that allows them to understand how their marketing performance compares to their peers. The process is automatic—no need to manually assign a score to your partners.
2. Educate Channel Partners on How To Improve Their Score
Alongside their score, partners also receive recommendations for how to improve and earn a greater return on investment on their marketing purchases. For example, Channel Partner Scorecard may show underperforming partners that their peers are seeing significant ROI from Facebook ads, and recommend that they shift some of their marketing budget to participate in this tactic. Partners can then tap into the resources within your channel marketing program for creating assets and executing localized Facebook ads. Once they’ve mastered the first set of improvements, Channel Partner Scorecard will guide partners on how to further optimize their marketing strategy.
3. Incentivize Ideal Behavior
One reason why Channel Partner Scorecard is so effective at improving partner marketing performance is the gamification aspect; partners are put in direct competition with their peers and challenged to improve their score. If you reward partners who successfully align their local marketing strategy with corporate goals, you can further drive adoption and engagement in your channel marketing program. For example, you may incentivize partners to be better marketers and brand champions by offering prizes or additional co-op funds to anyone who improves their score by one letter grade. Or, you can offer incentives for maintaining good scores month-over-month. Another idea is to have a contest among partners and offer the winner a significant prize, like a gift card or vacation. You can customize rewards based on seasonality, channel partner marketing maturity, or another factor. Whatever your desired level of program engagement is, you’ll be more likely to achieve it by igniting your partners’ competitiveness and rewarding them for meeting their goals.
4. Close the Marketing-To-Sales Loop
Channel Partner Scorecard is an advanced analytics solution that allows you and your partners to view marketing goals, campaigns, sales activity, and recommendations in a single platform. Having this data-driven visibility into what works and what doesn’t closes the marketing-to-sales loop because you can easily identify which tactics are generating a worthwhile return on investment, as well as which partners are driving the most revenue and which ones need to improve.
Humans are creatures of habit. Changing partner marketing behavior requires actively monitoring performance and reinforcing the processes and decision making that goes into making strategy improvements. Channel Partner Scorecard simplifies the process of converting recommendations into a desired action by giving partners a clear view of what needs to change and how to do it. Partners will also see the results of their actions in the Channel Partner Scorecard dashboard. Once they realize that improving their marketing strategy can drive sales, chances are they will be even more inclined to continue to use the solution for guidance and invest more time and funds into local marketing efforts.
Ready To Increase Partner Engagement in Your Channel Marketing Program?
To learn more about integrating Channel Partner Scorecard into your local marketing strategy, contact BrandMuscle.
Director of Product Management