Question - do you actually know every single person who sells your product? Think outside your internal sales team. What about all your distributors and channel partners? Do you know what their sales approach is? Do you know if they need additional resources or support from you?
If you're looking for a way to get the inside scoop on your distributor network, reward programmes are an easy way to do it –– when you partner with the right platform provider, of course.
Your distributor reward programme can help you gather important data that drives change and optimisation across your whole enterprise. From understanding your end-customers to finding crucial upsell opportunities, insights into your distributors’ activities provide countless benefits. Most importantly, they shine a light on what truly inspires loyalty.
Ultimately, you want your distributors to sell your product because they believe in your brand, not because there's a carrot dangling somewhere. That's why a great channel programme will prioritise product knowledge, brand engagement, and nurture positive behaviours that create brand ambassadors. Every time users interact with your platform, they are providing you with data that demonstrates these behaviours. Here’s how...
Getting to know ‘em
It's likely that your distributor network stretches far and wide. So how do you personalise rewards for folks that you may scarcely see? This isn't an unusual scenario, particularly for a large organisation. Smart leaders know, however, that paying attention to the details is what really matters to people; rewards that offer value get distributors to engage more with your objectives and achieve better results for your bottom line. A reward platform can help you reach individuals, regardless of distance, and build a database of knowledge around their preferences, their daily activities, and engagement patterns.
Your rewards programme will help you answer that all-important question: " What do they really want?" Chances are, it's not always rebates, discounts, or vouchers. But your reward programme can do so much more than just offer insight into how to stock an appealing rewards catalogue. It can give you an overview of the type of behaviours distributors exhibit so that you can a) ensure there's alignment with your organisational values, and b) drive better performance by attracting and stimulating their engagement.
Through surveys and questionnaires, you can gauge how the people in your network feel about your campaigns, products, and rewards, helping you to be proactive about improvements and quick to offer support and information where gaps have been identified.
Giving them something to aim for
There's a difference between a reward and a gift. If you're just giving things away whenever distributors vaguely align with your requirements, you're not only losing money, but also missing the opportunity to inspire positive outcomes for your business. That's why you need measurable performance indicators that will show both you and the distributor how close they are to achieving the agreed-upon goals and expectations.
For example, why not make selling a certain volume of product or achieving YoY growth a rewardable action? Additionally, you could give rewards based on the learning activities they undertake. Help them visualise their progress as the points add up on their dashboard. Your platform will help you standardise what a rewardable activity looks like and make achieving the target feel more tangible for the distributor because they have somewhere to log their progress. In turn, these KPIs make it much easier for you to adjust budgets, course-correct your campaigns and step in with a big “How can I help you?” if you detect that a distributor’s engagement has started to wane.
Discovering where your end-customers come from
So, your distributor's just made a sale, and they've logged onto the platform to claim their reward. That's great for them and for you –– from a revenue perspective. But is there something more to be gleaned here?
Of course, there is! The more knowledge you have about the transaction, the more context you have around your buyers’ purchasing decisions. Plus, you can observe whether your targeted buyer personas are responding to your marketing. Even better, sectors that you hadn’t predicted would be a suitable match for your product may suddenly reveal themselves to you by simply asking your distributors about the industries their buyers come from.
You may wish to even go a little deeper and enquire about the sales process. Was it hard, or simply business as usual? If this particular individual took some convincing or the sales process had to be adjusted, this may be an opportunity for you to provide the extra support to the distributor so they can get the value of the product across to the buyer more effectively.
Knowing who your distributor sells to allows you to build more targeted campaigns that get better results for your company and inspire confidence in your sales channel partner. But you won't necessarily pick up on that trend unless you have a way of being alerted to where sales are being made, and that's where your platform, and the data it's designed to collect, comes in real handy.
Finding the knowledge gaps
Some of your distributors may have exclusive access to a specific market, but they may have never tried to sell your product to that audience. Are you missing an opportunity to help them offer the right kind of product support and advice for that particular industry? Your reward platform can be equipped with all the necessary resources to make them more efficient at selling to new markets.
Comprehensive training boosts a distributor’s confidence. It helps them to freely talk about your product, knowing that they can answer almost any question a lead may throw at them. Training and upskilling are hugely beneficial, not to mention that it builds morale. If you’re not aware of the knowledge gaps distributors have, you can’t provide the material to make them better sellers of your products.
Spotting weak products in your range
If you give rewards based on sales, there's a chance that distributors will steer towards the products that encounter the least resistance. While that may blow up the figures for a little while, your other products could be making friends with dust bunnies on the shelf.
Your rewards platform can help you quickly pick up on this issue by highlighting the products that never get submitted when distributors issue their sales for a reward. You can then come up with a promotion to boost awareness or offer training so that distributors increase their expertise in your brand and don't shy away from selling a good mix of your products.
You don't need us to tell you how important your distributors are. The better you know them, the more successful you will be in both rewarding and supporting them. We can help with that! Gathering and interpreting data is a central feature in the design of our distributor rewards programme. With a demo, we can show you how our platform could help improve every aspect of your performance –– from engagement rates to retention rates. Just click below to schedule your demo.