The components are:
- True alignment to corporate and sales strategy
- Defined partner selection process
- Adherence to a channel governance process
- Partner focused recruitment package
- Comprehensive channel enablement content
It sounds crazy that your channel management strategy would somehow be out of alignment with your corporate or sales strategy but it happens quite frequently. Let me share a real example from a client experience last year. The CEO had been abundantly clear that he needed scale in the sales function to match growth expectations and a large investment in a direct sales force was out of the question. The best route to provide the scale he sought was through the channel
Everyone understood this but upon closer inspection of the current channel partners it was obvious that the strategy was out of alignment. A large number of the partners were small consulting firms that would do little to provide true scale to the sales function. In some cases, a channel manager had 20 small channel partners assigned to them. Their combined revenue was equal to that of 1.5 direct sales people.
After defining a clear partner selection and de-selection process, our client dissolved many of the relationships with small players and focused their efforts on signing up distributors and a few select alliance partners that had massive reach in their target market
Take a moment this weekend to consider whether your channel management strategy is truly aligned with your corporate and sales strategy.