In our annual channel VP survey, 112 of the 208 responses indicated they were not certain which tactics to change of the various options available to them.  Are you one of the VP’s of Channels that is wondering what will really move the needle next year?

 

This year, top tier channel organizations got serious about channel enablement.  HP, Cisco and Avaya are just a few that launched aggressive programs to bolster their partner’s capabilities and reward them accordingly.  Avaya recently announced several game changing moves to enable partners that include:

 

  • New benchmarking tools to compare themselves to other Avaya partners and industry averages
  • Personalized reports so partners can understand their strengths and weaknesses
  • A special partner designation for those scoring highest in customer surveys
  • Consolidation of tools, pricing and operational workflows into a single workflow

 

“We are removing obstacles and improving accessibility; making it easier for the best and the brightest to do business with us.” – Jeremy Butt, VP, Avaya Worldwide Channels

The new Avaya programs are the result of a detailed assessment of what could move the needle.  A good place for your team to start is to assess the level of available enablement content you have today.  These are table stakes in the current environment.  You can’t afford to lag in this area

 

Take these simple steps today:

 

  1. Map out the activities your buyer undertakes in their own process today
  2. Identify whether you have channel ready content for each activity
  3. Classify the content as non-existent, partially ready or public facing

 

The figure below is an excerpt of just such an assessment:

 

Channel sales enablement content resized 600

 

Once you have completed your internal assessment, schedule a meeting with your CMO and Product Management leaders to fast track the creation of public facing content.  Your partners have options in the marketplace and they will not wait forever if other vendors make it easier for them to sell

 

Takeaways:

 

  • Channel leaders are unsure of the actions take next year that will create big results
  • Top channel organizations have already moved to significantly enable their partners
  • If you are also unsure, confirm that your channel enablement content is ready for prime time
  • If you find gaps, work quickly before now and January to remediate the issue

 

For more information on assessing your partner’s strengths and weaknesses read this article here. What plans do you have for bold changes in your channel management tactics for 2012?

 


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mike Drapeau

Makes data and analysis come alive so clients can understand the “what” and “why” and design solutions that fit the environment.

Once the leader of SBI Delivery, Mike is now head of the firm’s internal talent development, so he has had the fortune to help some amazing sales and marketing leaders. He starts by earning their trust. Much of this comes from his deep base of experience. With more than 25 years in sales, sales management, pre-sales and sales operations, he’s never met a challenge he didn’t like. And with backgrounds in sales leadership, marketing, and sales operations, he shuns the idea of being a desk jockey and relishes the idea of living in the field.

 

Mike maintains, develops, and leverages SBI’s library of emerging best practices for sales and marketing, which leads to evidence-based solutions, custom-fit to each client. Maniacally focused on execution, Mike does not believe in giving clients fancy deliverables with no operational details. He knows that field adoption is key. After all, if behavior doesn’t change, the lift doesn’t come. Likewise, if those closest to the field adopt the solution, the client wins.

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