IT vendors should focus more on innovation and look for more effective tactics to support and reward their channel partners if they want to succeed in tougher economic times and attract fluctuating SMB spend.
These are the findings of research commissioned by loyalty programme specialist ICLP.
The research focused on five key roles within partner organisations: managing director, sales, marketing, technical and procurement, looking at what they receive, want and value from their partner programme.
Successful programmes depended on simplicity, consistency, good communication, more personal incentives and differentiation among recipients, the findings revealed.
Nearly 90 per cent of channel partners felt they were not getting the rewards they wanted as a result of vendor incentive programmes, and 82 per cent of partners want vendors to be more "dynamic" with their programmes and ensure they are more attractive than their competitors’ schemes.
In the current economic climate, there is a marked disconnect between what individuals in key partner roles actually receive and what they think is a worthwhile incentive, the research found.
And vendors that fail to address this mismatch risk losing market share and revenue as partners switch allegiance. The results revealed that partners at all levels want a shift from corporate to personal rewards.
A total of 55 per cent of respondents within a sales role said they received shopping vouchers as a reward, but would prefer reward hotel accommodation, flights and dining experiences.
In contrast, those in a technical role would actually prefer to receive shopping vouchers rather than branded merchandise. A total of 76 per cent of those in a sales role claimed pre-sales support and education are currently the main benefits received, but listed rewards, evaluation and demo equipment as those most valued.
And marketing teams have asked for vendors to provide even more support for lead generation activities including email campaigns, telemarketing, joint collateral development and presence at exhibitions.
Deloitte has been appointed as administrators for the struggling distie
It's been announced that billionaire tech pioneer Paul Allen died on Monday from non-Hodgkin lymphoma
Your latest edition of CRN
Air-IT founder Todd McQuilkin imparts the first 10 of his golden nuggets for MSP owners