Who knew…the secret to through-channel demand generation was actually through-channel sales enablement?!
Think about it. You as Vendors keep complaining that Partners never leverage the demand generation content you provide them. We hear it all day every day. “We give them campaigns, banners, webinars-in-a-box, and on and on with all of the marketing tools provided”. Well, Jay McBain of Forrester states that only 17% of Vendors are satisfied that they are getting the most out of their systems. We also hear that only 5-10% of Partners use the TCMAs. At Spark, we’ve been putting customizable content not just in the hands of marketing teams at Partners, but also in the hands of salespeople. And, guess what? They love it and they USE it
Why is This Different?
Wouldn’t you rather have 10 salespeople send your content to 200 prospects (they might even already have relationships with), than to have 1 marketing person send content to 2000 prospects from a generic email that no one is going to open? Now, we’re not suggesting you should stop having your Partners’ marketing teams send out content through their marketing automation tool, but let’s be productive about it. Encourage the Partners’ sales teams to be a part of the conversation. Having them involved will give them more incentive to use it. If you can provide easier and better sales enablement with your TCMA than your competitors can, your Partners will be more likely to sell for you.
What About My Campaigns?
In our experience as a Channel Marketing Professionals, very few Partners actually executed full Campaigns. Unless they’re using ContentMX or OneAffiniti (both of whom we Partner with by the way), they aren’t capable of or interested in sending full campaigns. We’ve been complaining for years that Partners don’t use our TCMAs – maybe they’re too complicated, maybe they don’t contain the right content, or maybe we’re not including the people within the Partner organization who want to be using Vendor content. If we say most Partner organizations don’t use the TCMA, you need to rethink why that might be. We’ve had many discussions over the past few years about what’s in the TCMA, but very few about who has access to it. Most TMCAs charge by user so giving it to the Partner sales teams seems daunting. We get it. But there has to be a better way.
What do I do now?
You’re in one of three camps.
- You have a TCMA already, results are “Meh” and you want to get Partners actually using your content. Consider offering individual pieces of content to several additional users in each Partner. Or train the Partner sales teams to hand over the content to a salesperson who can send it out themselves. Then of course you lose all ability to track (unless you use Spark!) but at least usage is up!
- You don’t have a TCMA because you don’t think they work. Rethink how you’re going to use it. If you train Partners to use one-off content for sales AND marketing you may have more success. Ask any TMCA vendors you’re talking to how they price their solution. Do you get charged more based upon how many users you have?
- You’re moving off your TCMA because you’ve had it! Let’s talk. Even if Spark isn’t right for you, we’ve worked closely with a lot of Vendors like you and can give you other suggestions.
And be sure to check out these related blogs if you haven’t already!