Mindmatrix’s #OnePlatformm Brings Partner Relationship Management (PRM), Channel Marketing Automation and Channel Sales Enablement together on a single platform to power the channel-based sales model

Mindmatrix is the ONLY native platform to offer a complete lead-to-revenue channel enablement solution

Pittsburgh, August 16, 2017: A Pittsburgh based company, Mindmatrix Inc., is the only native Channel Enablement Platform in the industry that offers all the 3 core elements of Channel Enablement; Partner Relationship Management (PRM), Channel Marketing Automation and Channel Sales Enablement on a single platform. Most other vendors either enable one or two of the three core elements; or have partnered with others to offer all the three elements.

Mindmatrix helps corporate marketing teams support channel partners more effectively through its channel marketing automation module. Mindmatrix’s channel marketing automation segment offers tools for centralized local marketing, lead generation, social media marketing and channel marketing asset management.

Mindmatrix also offers tools that simplify the channel sales model, making it easy for channel partners to sell. These features are a part of its sales enablement module for channels and include Playbooks, Distributed CRM Integration, E-Contract Signing, Guided Sales Solution Selling and CPQ Engine.

Maria Chien, Service Director of Channel Marketing Strategies at SiriusDecisions, says, “As suppliers invest in channel solutions to automate workflow, scale program capabilities and streamline processes, they should include interoperability as a key consideration for delivering a positive partner experience.  A core tenet of a positive partner experience is the ease of doing business, which is largely driven by the optimization of the workstreams associated with each partner touchpoint. Channel organizations must evaluate current and future technology investments to determine which tools are necessary to support channel business needs, paying special attention to possible integrations with existing technologies.”

About MindMatrix
Mindmatrix is the only single, fully integrated platform offering complete sales and marketing enablement for direct and indirect sales. Mindmatrix combines Partner Relationship Management (PRM), Channel Marketing, Asset Management, Sales Enablement, and Marketing Automation for the complete enablement of your sales and marketing teams. This unified platform takes you through every step in the sales process from lead to revenue, enabling your sales channels to sell more, faster.
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Understanding Partner Relationships

One of the key metrics of Partner Relationship Management is partner engagement. Partner engagement is a key component in driving sales for channel managers. The question for most managers today is how to actually measure partner engagement.

Here are some common examples I've seen used --
  1. Number of touch-points between partner and vendor
  2. Number of closed opportunities by partner
  3. Number of events attended by partner
  4. Logins to Partner Relationship Management software per partner
These examples tend to have disparate results, and most channel teams will review a variety of results from each--without any clear picture of how much weight should be applied or what they really mean.

How do you determine the most valuable activity?
You already know that your most valuable partners generate the most sales. But, identifying what got them to that point means you need to look at their engagement metrics and begin to identify the relationship between their actions and the results you see on paper.

As you prepare your metrics set, carefully identify the activities that partners may regularly take part in, that produce ideal results.

Create an activity grid for your partners
Plot the actions your partners take on a regular basis. This is easy to do if you are using a Partner Relationship Management software with some form of activity tracking. If you don't have something like this, you can--with less success--use tools apps like google drive to track asset sharing and access, for example. I'm using Mindmatrix in my example.

Here's a grid example below - of the top 4 activities that are important to me to drive reseller success:

In the column below each metric, track the real number of results you see and the ideal number you would like to see.

Assign points to better determine partner potential
You might find that some partners are actually capable of hitting your ideal number today. Just as you create personas in marketing, you should use the stats and results from these partners to plot out your ideal partner persona.

Take a step back and at this point, and start compiling questions that cover their differences and commonalities with other partners.

Using the grid from my article, Is there such a thing as too many channel partners? start thinking of ways to describe your ideal partner persona.

Here are a few examples below --
  • Number of Sales Reps
  • Dedicated Marketing Rep?
  • Marketing Automation platform?
  • Any Sales Enablement Tools?
  • Understanding of your product?
  • Would your best partners be stronger in marketing capability or sales resources?
Finally, with this profile in mind, interview your highest performing partners. (For more details on this, check out my article on questions to ask your top performing channel partners.) This will tell you where you should start to point resources to improve partner success.

MDF and channel partners--The bitter relationship

MDF is offered by vendors to their resellers as a way to get marketing and sales collateral to help channel partners sell their products.

Do you think your channel partners care about MDF (marketing development funds)? Well…do they? Do they know what MDF are? Do they know if they have access to any?

I’ve talked to different resellers who do and don’t know about MDF funds. The real reason why many resellers may not take advantage of these benefits is really just due to time. If you are a small to medium sized business, how much time and money do you really spend on marketing efforts—let alone figuring out how to take advantage of “dollar funds” from a vendor?

Why don’t channel managers do more to promote MDF?
Channel managers are often frustrated with distributing MDF to partners/resellers—
  1. “We think they care, but only a few partners use them.”
  2. “We keep hoping MDF funds can become easier to distribute (so we don’t have to spend so much time tracking them in spreadsheets!) It’s very inconvenient to make sure our resellers know MDF funds are available (so only those who ask gain access).”
  3. “Most of our partners don’t seem to have the time to even answer the phone when we call—so MDF funds are really just there for our biggest partners.”
All of this amounts to leaving money on the table. The good news is, you don’t have to abandon the idea of MDF entirely Here are a few ways to ensure your channel partners actually make full use of the MDF allotted to them.

Invest in a partner relationship management software that allows you to manage your marketing development funds process from start to end. A partner relationship management software like Mindmatrix, for example
  • Allows your channel partners to apply for MDF online.
  • Infuses transparency into the MDF request and disbursement process by allowing corporate marketing department and channel partners to see the funds used and available for disbursal.
  • provides corporate marketing department visibility of MDF fund usage so you know where your MDF Dollars were invested by your channel partners.
  • Lets you measure the ROI on the MDF dispersed by tracking its MDF usage and the results of sales and marketing campaigns engaged in using the MDF.
Tell you channel partners what you have in store for them. You are there to help your channel partners sell your products. Pick up the phone and tell your channel partners what you have to offer and if there are any services/education they can take advantage of.

Before you know it, your channel partners and MDF funds will be hand in hand--walking off into the sunset together, with a much better, happier and healthier relationship.

How can you restart a tired channel partner program?

Partner nurturing is a growing concern for companies working to get the most out of their Partner Relationship Management program.
As a channel manager, how can you -
  1. Ensure your partners have access to the resources that they need to sell
  2. Support your products in the best way
  3. Get the most out of your channel partner's time and resources?
The answer is with a strong, partner nurturing strategy that engages your channel partners with the most up-to-date information that is relevant to help them resell your products. Here are three things to consider when evaluating how to improve your partner program--

Identify the education your partners need the most
I've spoken about this in other articles, but spending time on the right amount of partner education in the right areas is essential to the success of any partner program. The reality is, your partners only have so much time during the day to spend learning about your products. Unless you make up a significant stream of their revenue, you are fighting for marketing real estate alongside other products or services they sell. You may even be fighting for traction against your competitors!

This is why identifying the educational materials that are most valuable to your partners is extremely important. Focus your resources on creating content that is both informational and influential and helps your partners to understand your products and close more sales.

Evaluate the "wordiness" of your content
This is overlooked, but one of the most important things you can do is figure out the easiest way to speak to your resellers. Are they more likely to engage with webinar, video, or email content? What makes the most sense for them to gain knowledge in a little amount of time? Have you evaluated the impact of your LMS (learning management system) and the amount of effort you are asking your partners to engage in before they can become better resellers?

Take a look at the resources you are offering through your PRM and take into account their consumption rates. Is there any work you can take off of your channel partners' plates to make them more successful?

How often do you engage with your partners?
When was the last time you looked at your online strategy when it comes to engagement? Do your partners have a sense of community with your products or a way to easily find more information to help them resell? The answers to these questions should strongly influence your next-steps as you review your partner engagement strategy.

You may find that you need to refocus your efforts on building content or LMS that promotes your channel partner community.

About Mindmatrix
Mindmatrix is the only single, fully integrated platform offering complete marketing and sales enablement for direct and indirect sales.
Mindmatrix offers Partner Relationship Management (PRM) software, Channel Marketing Automation, Asset Management software, Sales Enablement software and Marketing Automation software for the complete enablement of your sales and marketing teams.