And while there is always room for an excellent reseller, it is a crowded field, and in order to stand out from the competition you need a top-notch marketing plan.
As you begin thinking about how you will promote your business, consider these six tips that can help get your business off the ground quickly, and ensure your long-term success.
1. Define Your Customer
The most important part of any successful sales strategy is understanding your customer — who they are, what they need, what they want, and how can you help solve their problems? Understanding who is buying your products and why can help you develop a more effective marketing strategy. Spend some time developing buyer personas and studying the journey that customers take when they purchase technology, and tailor your marketing efforts to serve their needs at various phases.
You should also work with your distributor to learn more about their solutions, and how you can collaborate to meet the needs of your customers. Some vendors only provide products, while other distribution partners provide additional services and assistance that can help you better communicate the benefits of those product to meet your customers’ needs.
2. Use Social Media
Social media isn’t only for B2C companies. Many B2B companies are effectively using social media to drive web traffic and build brand awareness, as well as generate leads. In fact, studies show that more than half of B2B companies that have an active social media presence have acquired customers through one of those channels. As you begin marketing your company, consider how you can best leverage social media to engage with your audience. Remember that engagement is key — it’s not enough to have a Facebook or Twitter account and let it stagnate — and you will need to invest some time and effort into social media management, but with time, you should see a return on your investment.
3. Build a Referral Business
Referrals are the lifeblood of many small businesses, and yours is no different. Develop a program to reward customers for bringing you new business, and acknowledge clients and customers for their help in growing your business. You might also consider an affiliate program, which can help expand the reach of your marketing efforts and enhance your partnerships with your customers.
4. Take Advantage of Manufacturer Incentives and Referrals
Most technology manufacturers offer extensive incentive plans for resellers to help make it easier to sell products. Pay close attention to the promotions, offers, contests, and other incentives offered by manufacturers and use them to promote your products and services to your customers.
Manufacturers and distributors also generally offer lead and referral programs to resellers. In many cases, these are qualified leads that can lead to sales, so be sure that you are enrolled in all applicable programs, and that you follow the rules and procedures of those programs so you can continue to receive leads and grow your business.
5. Attend Industry Events
Building relationships is important to any successful business venture, and industry events are often the best place to connect with individuals who can help you grow and sustain your company. Not only does attending conferences and meetings help you keep your finger on the pulse of what’s new in the industry and the trends that are shaping how you will operate in the future, but you can also network with potential customers and partners. Plan on attending at least a few industry events each year, and make your presence known.
6. Use Content Marketing
Finally, don’t underestimate the value of content marketing to help grow your business. Content is still king — and a well-written, relevant, and useful blog that can help your customers find the answers they are looking for can drive both web traffic and sales. A great blog can also help establish your brand, support your social media efforts, and establish you as a leader in the field, so put this toward the top of the list of your marketing tactics.
As your business grows and changes, your marketing plans will evolve along with it. If you keep these ideas in mind as you start out, though, that growth will happen much faster than you expect.