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Improve collaboration with your dealers through technology!

 

Manufacturers, in their quest to increase the brand loyalty and mind share of dealer employees, look for ways to increase dealer engagement and collaboration. It’s almost counter-intuitive, but today technology can make it easier to encourage engagement with your channel partner employees. Technology can make your company more “human-like,” it can provide more touch points to your brand, and generate more brand loyalty, not less.  A brief article by John Panaccione, CEO of LogicBay Corporation, describes how this can be done. Here are some highlights:
 

  • Use a Partner Relationship Management (PRM) System - Adopting a Partner Relationship Management (PRM) system to connect with your dealers is the most important first-step to take.  PRM systems give companies an integrated system to market, sell and service their products more effectively than traditional sales applications. It’s a best practice that should be integrated into any company selling through a channel today. 
  • Integrate the PRM with Your CRM - As more companies adopt a PRM to manage the activities of their dealers, it’s becoming clear that linking these two separate tools can enhance the effectiveness of each. Combining information from both a CRM and PRM can provide a more global view of the entire channel, from dealer to customer, yet preserve the individual value that each system provides.
  •  “Go Mobile” with Tablets and Applications - More and more companies are pushing some of their training, product presentations, online libraries and ordering applications to a dealer mobile or tablet environment.  While still a new way to interact with dealers and customers, manufacturers are seeing that tablets and mobile apps can significantly increase engagement with their dealers and customers. 

 

Channel Communication with Technology
Successful companies work to connect all of these technology advancements together to the benefit of both the company and its dealers. That’s how they create real engagement and an improved ROI. Click here to read John’s article. He offers suggestions and ideas that you can use to incorporate these new technologies into your own dealer channel.

About LogicBay
LogicBay’s Partner Relationship Management (PRM) Technology is rich with best practice workflows making it easier for organizations to do business with channel partner re-sellers. The result: More engagement and Mindshare. Greater Efficiency and Cost Savings. Alignment with Channel Partners. And, Performance Improvement for the Entire Sales Enterprise.
Premium White Paper Download this premium white paper to learn Partner Relationship Management Best Practices – make it easy for dealers to do business with you, heighten dealer engagement, gain mindshare and maximize financial returns. Learn about LogicBay’s Best Practice Framework including methods for more effectively training and monitoring dealer employee certifications.
Premium White Paper Link to LogicBay’s Library of Partner Relationship Management White Papers. These white papers provide best practice ideas on a Channel Readiness and Performance Improvement strategies. Topics include subjects such as: Effectively launching a LMS for the Channel, Applying Lean Principles to Channel Management, Channel Life-cycle Management, Partner Portal Technology Unification, and much more.
Premium White Paper Link to LogicBay’s Library of Client Case Studies. Learn how LogicBay’s PRM Solutions and Technology have created significant performance gains for clients such as Caterpillar, HP, Daimler Trucks and Outdoor Living Brands.

Comments

click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LWjbwrdlW4 for a 3-minute LogicBay overview video
Posted @ Monday, November 28, 2011 9:11 PM by Todd Grant
This article touches on the powerful impact technology can have to foster engagement and collaboration with a dispersed network of constituents that reside within a channel environment. At the core of Partner Relationship Management, enabling heightened engagement is proven to lead to improved financial performance and launching powerful online communities enabled by PRM portals achieves this. 
After posting this article a comment on the broader market forces causing enterprise to explore new methods of measuring and harnessing the "human capital" within the extended enterprise seems appropriate. Technology-enabled PRM solutions are an example of how organizations are doing this, but not the only example. 
 
There are clear signs that large enterprise needs to look beyond traditional methods of gaining efficiencies. In a recent article, The Next Generation of Leadership ( http://bit.ly/3ZgQlV ), Jim Clifton, the Chairman and CEO of Gallup, describes that enterprise has maximized every possible benefit from practices based on neoclassical economics, such as Six Sigma, reengineering, and total quality management. He goes on to state that the significant competitive advantages from these practices have hit a point of diminishing returns. Most well-run companies have wrung almost every efficiency they can from their operations – and their competitors have too. 
 
The message here is that we're entering a business environment that is ripe for new practices for gaining efficiencies. As such, organizations will create processes and systems that leverage the human capital of the organization. Traditional networks of hierarchical organization tables will become turned side-ways as the enterprise efforts to extract the maximum potential from its networks that are like spider webs throughout the organization. 
New systems for harnessing knowledge will lead to advancements in innovation, entrepreneurship and growth from deep within the enterprise. In my opinion, those organizations that master this new leadership framework will drive growth in the new economy faster than those that don't.
Posted @ Thursday, January 05, 2012 8:45 PM by URL shortened test
Prior to becoming a consultant I spent three decades in the telecommunications industry designing, building and integrating large communication networks. These networks were built by corporations, colleges and universities, government and large not for profits and all of them were being installed to facilitate communication, the transfer of knowledge and information, to leverage capabilities and to save time and money in a variety of ways. 
 
All of them were designed well and were highly functional but their real value to the organization was always based upon how intrinsically motivated the PEOPLE were to use the system. Because, to state the obvious - but often forgotten-: "Technology is only as useful as it is used."  
 
But the good news is that over the years some technology platforms have gone beyond connecting people to actually being the catalyst to build relationships. And from my experience PRM platforms represent the most exciting examples of this important new evolution in the use of technology. 
 
I remember how as a "Channel Partner" with a large LAN/WAN hardware manufacturer we never felt listened to, let alone being heard. The manufacturer professed, promised and touted interest in collaborating with its partners but at the end of the day it was clear by their actions that they didn't want to collaborate. All they really wanted to do was to dictate.  
 
As a result those of us who were their "partners" felt more like "patsies". And that resulted in none of us who owned the businesses, or even our sales people, ever really becoming intrinsically motivated to become engaged in the relationship. We sold their stuff but we weren't committed to building a relationship with someone who didn't want one. So the "relationship" was merely transactional, when it could have been transformational for all parties concerned. 
 
That company, although a $2Billion company at the time was in the #2 position in the market and struggled mightly to get to be #1. But they never came could overtake their competition even though their product in many ways was superior to the #1 contender's product. 
 
But what their competition had was a much better Partner Relationship Model. And that, in my opinion after being in the front lines of competing with the competitor's partners for years, was in the top 2 differentiating factors between the success of these two global giants in that industry. 
 
Why? Because what #1 was doing so effectively was that it was tapping into, listening to and then leveraging the collective genius, knowledge and experiences of their channel partners. In other words they were engaging the humans in their networks! 
 
So here we had two of the global leaders in the networking technology space who both had very similar PRM platforms yet one consistently outperformed the other and even increased the spread between them year after year. And as I said before their product was not that much better. Trust me, I know. In fact my frustration level would go through the roof when we would lose to them. 
 
But what they had, and was better able to leverage was solid human to human relationships that were built upon mutual respect for the role that the manufacturer and the channel partner played in the sale. While the technology of the two PRM systems were very similar the fact that #1 actually sought, considered and used or improved upon the "intel" coming from their channel partners to successfully closed deals made the difference. 
 
I have to say that many of us who were channel partners of #2 really envied the relationship our competitors had with #1. It was frustrating that not only did they gain more clients and business but the relationship they had with the manufacturer made them increasingly difficult to compete with them.  
 
Add to that fact that once a client decided to go with one or the other manufacturer they built their entire network for years to come using that manufacturer and that platform. So the stakes where high. 
 
And it was frustrating to watch our #2 try all kinds of high level sexy ideas to improve their standing in the marketplace only to fall further and further behind. They tried rebranding themselves and even changed their name. They acquired other companies that could enhance their product offering. They fired and hired new CEO's and C-Suite executives and none of it worked; largely because when they decided to shift their business model from 100% direct sales to a direct/partner hybrid model they never committed to building the interpersonal and inter organizational relationships necessary to succeed. 
 
They never got that, to steal a phrase from the 1992 Clinton presidential campaign: "It's about the people stupid!". As a result they overlooked the most important asset they had access to. An asset that was not only willing to be engaged but was begging to be engaged - their partners. Then when it became clear that we were not part of a true collaboration and that they only wanted our sales force, clients and contacts and not our mind power, innovations and insights we became disengaged. 
 
Once their partners became not engaged they not only lost access to the collective genius and energies of literally thousands of on the street sales people nation wide, they also lost access to that which they were so hungry to get: Our business and access to our future business.  
 
All of this happened several years ago and if you look at #1 today, they are still #1. If you look for #2 today you will find that they were acquired by bigger global giant and they have fallen way back into the pack. 
 
I cannot say that their lack of commitment to go beyond connecting with their partners to actually building an interactive and respectful relationship with their partners was the soul reason for their ultimate fall from best in class to middle of the pack but it was certainly a very large part of the reason. 
 
All I do know is that if I were to consider buying the stock of one of two competing companies and I knew the one had a PRM model that actually tapped into, listened to and responded to input from thousands of people on the customer front lines and one that was convinced they already knew all they needed to know, the decision would be a simple and a profitable one. 
 
PRM programs are excellent tools as long as they enable, encourage and value building strong human to human relationships along with superior technology platforms that facilitate robust bi-directional collaborations between the people and the organizations involved.  
 
Getting that part of your business right just might give you one of the biggest strategic competitive advantages you could ever have, even more so than the quality of your product. 
Posted @ Wednesday, January 18, 2012 9:50 AM by Jeffrey Deckman
I will defiantly be putting this post in my favorites great post very informative post thank you for the share.
Posted @ Wednesday, January 30, 2013 2:16 AM by get a dealers license
Excellent article, quite interesting info. I came across your website on yahoo. I am going to recommend it to family members and close friends. .In part of Partner Relationship Management (PRM) System you shared good information .
Posted @ Saturday, February 02, 2013 1:14 AM by requirements for a dealer license
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