It’s no secret that most IT channel partners could use some help when it comes to marketing. Most simply don’t have the time, money or experience to put together an effective professional digital marketing campaign.
While vendors have long-been aware of the marketing limitations of their partners, many have struggled to understand what they can do to improve the situation. For too long, vendors responded to the issue by simply providing partners with marketing collateral through partner portals. Some have even gone so far as to provide access to marketing and sales advisors from their own team.
This approach, however, fails to address what partners want and need from a vendor marketing program. Indeed, what partners unanimously desire is a marketing program that helps them share high-quality content to drive more leads and reflects well on their brand. Just as important, partners want an effective marketing program that is easy to execute and requires a minimal investment of time and company resources.
Above all else, channel partners want a marketing program that generates qualified leads. An effective digital marketing campaign accomplishes that by doing two important things. First, it provides consistent, high-quality content that end-users appreciate and are likely to interact with. Second, it provides the channel partners data on how the end-users are interacting with the content, allowing the partners to identify prospects who are at different stages in the sales funnel and who are more likely to buy new products or services in the near and mid-term.
Partners that participate in Extu’s marketing program get immediate insights into how end-user are interacting with the monthly digital marketing campaigns sent out on behalf of vendor brands. They know which people on a partner’s customer list opened the email and what content within the marketing campaign was clicked on or downloaded.
Partners can use the insights gleaned from the marketing campaigns to follow up with end-buyers, and Extu sales advisors are there to coach them along in the process to ensure sales don’t fall through the cracks. For instance, if a partner notices that a buyer downloaded an e-book on ransomware protection, that partner might encourage a sales executive to send a message or make a call to the buyer to provide them with more information about security solutions available to protect their systems from ransomware attacks.
Partners want digital marketing solutions that make them stand out amidst the flood of marketing messages targeting end-users. In other words, the content itself isn’t enough — and the way that content is presented to their end users has to be top-notch.
The best digital marketing campaigns provide thought leadership content that is both educational and enjoyable for end-users. Since different buyers have different needs, interests and attention spans, a marketing campaign should offer a variety of content. Some will appreciate a lengthy white paper about a subject that is central to their business, but others will prefer to stick to shorter content that they can quickly absorb, such as a quick blog post or infographic.
The marketing campaign itself must be presented in a professional way that distinguishes it from amateur counterparts. At the very least, it must be personalized by including the targeted buyer’s name. Just as important, however, the design should reflect elements of the partner’s brand alongside the vendor’s, such as using high resolution logos and appropriate brand colors.
Channel partners want a marketing program that requires as little work as possible on their end. Most resellers don’t have any dedicated marketing staff, so they’re unlikely to take part in a marketing program that demands a major investment of time or specialized marketing knowledge.
Extu provides a simple marketing program that requires no more than five minutes of work per month for each channel partner. Generally, other channel marketing programs merely provide partners with resources and put them in charge of crafting and distributing the campaign. In contrast, Extu offers’s marketing-as-a-service, which is completely funded by the vendor and crafted entirely by Extu. This program ensures a consistent level of quality, professionalism, and branding for participating partners. It also provides actionable data that vendors and partners alike can use to convert more leads into loyal customers.
A marketing program with a proven ability to generate qualified leads requiring a mere five minutes of work per month? It doesn’t get much simpler than that! This explains why Extu’s program boasts the highest participation rates in the IT channel at 70%. For more information about how easy it is to offer marketing-as-a-service to your partner channel, contact us today.