[Translate to eng:] Learning Center Channel Marketing

Channel Marketing

How you can support your partners in channel marketing

In the past, the sales channels in many companies were rigidly based on the industries and divisions. Due to the development of the Internet and the changes in the customer's customer journey, attempts are now being made to optimally adapt the sales channel to the various needs of customers. However, since there is usually not just one specific customer group, but different groups of people should be addressed, it is important to find the optimal sales channels for each product or service. This customer-oriented marketing and the right channel marketing can be planned in the best possible way on the basis of market research and the precise analysis of the target groups and their purchasing and media behavior.

What is channel marketing?

In general, there is no longer just one right way or place to sell and market a product or service. Digitization and globalization are opening up more and more distribution channels on which your own goods can be offered. The channel is the path that the product takes from the manufacturer or brand to the end consumer. This can be done via a direct (online) shop or via sales and distribution partners (e.g. dealers). On the customer journey, the journey of the product to the customer, every touchpoint is important and can influence the final sale. Effective channel marketing therefore means finding partners who support the product's successful path to the customer and offer new ways to market or sell it. The type of sales that channel marketing is based on is indirect sales. The goods are brought to the customers and communicated via (independent) sales or distribution partners. Here, the manufacturer or the brand tries to gain awareness and to expand the general brand image through the partners. In order for this to work, the right partnerships for channel marketing must be developed and maintained. In general, channel marketing is not only relevant for large companies and brands; smaller manufacturers can also benefit from the various sales channels and increase their awareness.

The different types in channel marketing

[Translate to eng:] To-Partner-Channel-Marketing

Hierbei handelt es sich um kommunikative Maßnahmen, die an die eigenen Partner gerichtet sind. Sie helfen vor allem dabei die Beziehung zu den Partnern zu pflegen und aufzubauen und eine Grundlage für ein erfolgreiches Endkunden Marketing zu schaffen.

[Translate to eng:] Marketingportal Print Consulting
Through partner channel marketing

In the case of through-partner activities, the advertising content is supplied by the company, but the marketing is completely carried out by the sales or sales partners. The partners act as a mouthpiece for the brand.

[Translate to eng:] Marketingportal Research
With partner channel marketing

In contrast, with-partner channel marketing works on a common marketing strategy. The brand and the dealers or partners advertise jointly, mostly under both names for the products and services.

The different types of channel marketing

What are the advantages of channel marketing?

In general, channel marketing and indirect sales offer the opportunity to better respond to the needs of customers and always use the right channel for marketing the various products and services. Local sales or distribution partners are particularly suitable here, as they are directly on site and close to the customer. This spatial proximity allows for more direct communication with customers and new trends and challenges on the customer's side are perceived directly and quickly. As a result, the partners develop a great deal of knowledge about the local target group, which is also important for the entire brand and the future planning of products and marketing measures. In addition, channel marketing offers the opportunity to share and reduce costs through cooperation in marketing, whereby a win-win situation can be achieved for both the company and the partners.

  • Choosing the right sales channels for the different target groups
  • Direct marketing and communication on site
  • Exchange with customers and early identification of trends
  • Local contact and regional focus
  • Shared advertising costs and efficient resource management

What are the challenges?

In general, however, the various channels and thus the partners should be selected carefully. Only a well-structured and planned partnership leads to greater success for both sides. When selecting potential partners, it is important to pay attention to the target group and expertise and to analyze the products, competitors and markets served. In addition to the versatile advantages, there are also challenges in channel marketing that must be mastered. Especially when working with smaller, local partners, it can happen that there is still little marketing know-how available on site. The partners usually do not have their own marketing department and the uniform implementation of marketing on different channels can turn out to be difficult. Smaller partners in particular are often more focused on sales and may need more support in planning and implementing marketing campaigns. It is also important to define uniform messages and goals in order to avoid possible conflicts between the intentions of the brand and the personal goals of the partner.

Software support in channel marketing

In order to make the implementation of the marketing projects on the part of the partners and the brand as easy as possible, it is advisable to choose joint software support that spans the entire channel marketing. In particular, marketing portals, so-called Through Channel Marketing Automation Systems (TCMA for short), prevailed. Such a portal, usually as a software-as-a-service solution, offers the possibility of accessing marketing content, campaigns and guidelines from anywhere. In the marketing portal, the company offers its partners a wide variety of marketing channels and materials, which the partners can edit, adapt and order or publish directly using templates. Thus every partner, even without marketing knowledge, has the chance to build up his personal marketing mix (online and offline) and to advertise along the company-wide marketing campaigns. Marketing portals also offer the opportunity to save guidelines for corporate design and digital assets such as images, videos or files and pass them on to partners. Together with the ability to send messages and carry out analyzes of marketing campaigns, such a portal offers a platform on which the entire channel management can be viewed.