Richard Solomon at Retail Profiling offers his views on how tech brands can enhance their distribution and DMR partner potential.
Time can easily slip away when you’re spending the day at your distribution or direct market reseller partners (DMRs such as Misco, Insight, Compucentre, BT Dabs and PCWBD).
Vendor days offer so much opportunity to educate and support sales teams whilst building and improving relationships. With the sales teams having a pre-set focus on the brands they know sell well, have higher margins or they have experience with, it can be tough to get your message across and even harder to keep at the top of their agenda.
Having the right people in place with the correct level of support is vital to create the environment for your distribution and DMRs to deliver their highest potential. And they do have serious potential if you give them face to face focus. No other channel partner has this capacity to deliver such high volumes.
However, having the right people to represent you here doesn’t come easily. Firstly they need to know the brand inside out, with the energy to get up and walk the floor to interact, engage and get to know the sales team. They need to understand the routines and challenges of each team down to the individual to be able to engage positively with them to enable your brand being understood and put across to them in a way so they won’t switch off.
It’s all about building rapport from then on. Once the teams recognise your brand representative’s ability and know they can learn from their knowledge, they will start to open up more and interact with them. Continuing the reliable relationships means having the ability to help them where it matters - ‘special bids’. With this knowledge you can make their life a lot easier and assist to sell your brand directly. This is a specialist skill, it’s not easy to understand this process but if your representatives do they have something which can help all of the sales teams.
To really maximise impact and deliver solid regular support for your partners' sales teams, take the opportunity to cover every vendor day possible, at least monthly. Resource needs to be at full capacity across all sites to keep momentum and brand awareness high.
Our current work in DMRs for leading IT brands has enabled us to build positive relationships with sales teams on their behalf. By dedicating our highly skilled specialists to each site and allowing regular presence, the relationships have built over time. As the sales teams are now fully aware of their capabilities and knowledge, they are viewed as a reliable and credible source to turn too when they need further assistance with the brand or special bids.
Our work continues to strengthen partnerships between brands and their DMR partners, along with the relationships on the sales floor. With product knowledge constantly building, incentives and special pricing being highlighted and over all rapport continuing to grow with every visit, it is a proven approach to enhance your distribution and DMR partner potential.
About the author
Richard Solomon is field operations manager at Retail Profiling.