Story image

Wise choices key to relationship

01 Mar 12

Like any successful relationship, strong partnerships between resellers and vendors are based on honesty and integrity, underpinned by shared goals and regular, open channels of communication.
The most effective and profitable channel partnership programmes are those where vendor and reseller have a coherent agreement on direction and a strategic plan including jointly agreed time-bound goals. For example a reseller who currently has a $100,000 business may have a target of becoming a $1 million business within 12 to 18 months. The strategic plan should map out a jointly agreed path for achieving this. The vendor needs to guide the partner through this, helping them understand how to build, market and sell the solution.
Staying connected
Setting goals is straight-forward, the execution is the challenge. To turn goals into actions, it’s important for reseller and vendor to maintain momentum by staying connected, including scheduling fortnightly updates and meeting regularly face-to-face. When momentum drops, interest declines.
A two-way relationship: vendors must add value
Within this context, vendors selling through the channel also need to ensure they provide their resellers with the tools to help them deliver against the plan. This includes providing sufficient in-depth knowledge around customers and products – the financial aspects; the technology; the support systems; architecture; software, including licensing and networking – everything that the solution should cover. If the vendor is not delivering this, the reseller needs to push back.
Turning powerful partnerships into profit
Channel partners often ask vendors how to turn market opportunities into effective revenue streams. It’s important to assess your current core products, determining where you can add value to existing customers while opening doors to new opportunities.
From a vendor perspective, it’s also about making the right choices when selecting partners. Vendors need to know their efforts won’t be wasted. A reseller will always look for committed partners who are willing to commit to resources (intellectual capital) more than dollars. Likewise, a reseller must demonstrate that the vendor investment in providing training and resources will deliver the desired shared results.
Vendors need to work in partnership with their resellers to support and mentor their sales force. This means developing dual engagement initiatives and shared sales strategies, supported by regular events and meetings. If vendors are involved and build relationships with their partners’, sales force, their commitment to each other keeps growing and the partnership becomes more profitable.
Relationships matter to customers too
A strong relationship based on integrity between reseller and end user makes for a healthy revenue stream. Customers still need the help of their resellers and resellers need to listen to their issues and have the ability to transform those issues into revenue through consultative selling. If an end user has a strong relationship with a reseller, they usually stay 100% committed as long as that relationship is solid.
Becoming a first class reseller requires a substantial investment of time and money. Investing in relationships is critical. In the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the knight says to Indiana: ”Choose wisely, because the correct cup will give you eternal life and the wrong one will take it.”
Maximising profit potential from partner programmes requires resellers to make wise choices. From selecting the right vendor to partner with, to creating a cohesive plan with clearly identified goals. Investing the time needed to get this right will deliver a strong partner programme that produces the desired results. 

Proofpoint launches feature to identify most targeted users
“One of the largest security industry misconceptions is that most cyberattacks target top executives and management.”
How blockchain will impact NZ’s economy
Distributed ledgers and blockchain are anticipated to provide a positive uplift to New Zealand’s economy.
McAfee named Leader in Magic Quadrant an eighth time
The company has been once again named as a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Security Information and Event Management.
Symantec and Fortinet partner for integration
The partnership will deliver essential security controls across endpoint, network, and cloud environments.
Review: Blue Mic’s Satellite headphones are good but...
Blue Mic’s newest wireless headphones deliver on sound, aesthetic, and comfort - but there is a more insidious issue at hand.
Is Supermicro innocent? 3rd party test finds no malicious hardware
One of the larger scandals within IT circles took place this year with Bloomberg firing shots at Supermicro - now Supermicro is firing back.
Forcepoint and Chillisoft - “a powerful combination”
Following Chillisoft’s portfolio expansion by signing on Forcepoint, the companies’ execs explain how this is a match made in cybersecurity heaven.
David Hickling in memoriam: “Celebrate the life and the music it made”
Dave was a well-respected presence in the IT channel and his recent death was felt by all the many people who knew him as a colleague and a friend.