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Praveen Singh
Bengaluru ,india
Channel Development Manager - South India @ Arrow ECS
Interests: social work,writing blogs, watching worthful movie, reading good novel, lisening good music, playing badminton....
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Hello Praveen, Greetings! Thanks for the "thanks" in your article :) You are spot on with the need for developing good sales relationships within the channel. I have been in distribution and channel for nearly three-decades and the weakest link is generally people who do not understand the channel model and who do not repsect its value. Fundamentally, a channel works because, as the title denotes, it is a channel. It follows a direction up and a direction down, but does not stray side-to-side. What this means is the legs of the channel including manufacturing/vendors, distribution, and VARs/integrators (two-step channel) must respect each others roles and responsiblities. Fundamentally, product and brand development comes from the manufacturer. It is amplified through the channel by the distributor and pushed to the end-user by the VAR (reseller) or integrator (services provider). And, yes, each leg must make money. The main thing is not compete with each other or force margins to nothing by pressing down on prices so much so that it defeats the channel purpose and commoditizes the products/services sold. At the heart of channel is the one-to-many choice. You are in a channel as a manufacturer/vendor because you want to create that one-to-many sales outlet. You can touch many more targeted clients by distribution, but not all companies are ready or a good fit for a distributed model. Some companies (vendors) are better with a one-step or VAR/reseller channel direct from the vendor; while others should stick to direct sales. Most of the time...blended models do not work. That is so because of the internal conflict which causes resellers to shy away from manfucturers who compete against them especially when there is not a price barrier (such as MSRP or MAP) and direct sales defeats the channel itself. Creating value though the channel is essential. For a distributor, it is providing tools and leverage of the benefits of volume purchase from a manufacturer and aggregation of lines which begins that value-add which it can provide to its resellers. Then, add expertise and technical support, marketing and communciations and benficial programs and training (such as might be found in partner programs and loyalty/growth incentive programs) to be a beneficial provider. Fairness and good communication and monitoring of the entire channel make sales work best in the channel model. These days outlets such as social media, good SEO, Webinars and training, participation in trade-shows and conferences, videos, electronic communications and one-on-one sales contacts work oustandingly to keep up relationships. The better the understanding and respect of each-others roles, the better the outcome. Nice article my friend, - Best regards, - Richard Bernhardt
Hey thanks !I'm also glad you added you as a friend
Thank you for reading this post on building customer loyalty and relationship selling. Do you have any advice on how to build customer satisfaction for sales success? Please share your tips and comment below!
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