By Michael Fair, MarketRace
Continuing down my list of the top 10 mistakes that service providers (and master agents for that matter) make with their channel programs: Limiting Partner Recruitment.
Successful programs must continually evaluate not just who their partners are but what types of partners they have in their programs. New partners must be continually recruited, especially as service providers add new, more complex services to their portfolios. Often the best performing partners from the past are not necessarily the best suited to sell new services.
This is especially true for services such as VoIP, network monitoring and hosted solutions and applications. These services require a more consultative sale and often traditional telecom agents, for example, are not capable of selling these services.
A focused recruitment program is often required to identify, approach and sign up incremental partners that are capable of selling enhanced services. Unique value propositions must be crafted for subsets of partner types. For example, the value proposition that a VoIP service provider would use to recruit an IT integrator is very different than the approach required to successfully approach and recruit a traditional voice interconnect.
Upon recruitment, the enablement of the partner is also critical to the success. One size does not fit all. Focus and creativity is often what separates a program from being successful versus a failure.