How will you measure your business?
Selling though a channel fundamentally changes your access to market intelligence. If you are not prepared for it, you will lose visibility of where your products are going, who is buying your products, what are they purchasing, how many and when etc…Channel partners are usually happy to share most of this information with you, provided they are certain it will not be used to play against them. If they don’t trust you, they will share the information after the sale has occurred; if they trust you, they often involve you in the sales process and always inform you of what they are working on. It all comes down to whether your sales commissions are “route-to-market-neutral”, which means that the sales people get a commissions regardless of who invoiced the customer.
- Does your distribution contract require POS (Point of Sales) reporting? This is something you can insist on.
- Most distributors expect to see their reporting costs paid for (0.5%)
- Do you know what reports you need and how often you would like them?
- Have you developed or acquired the tools to collect and analyse the information
- Have you identified the people who will be responsible for producing the market intelligence?