Channel Marketer Report


Helping Partners Optimize Social Media With ‘The 3 Es’

Channel marketers are beginning to recognize that old school marketing tactics, such as cold calling and telemarketing don’t have as much power or value. Today’s buyers are seeking optimal solutions that are relevant to their unique pain points, and are taking to search engines and social networks to find the answer to their problems.

In response to these buyer-facing trends, vendors and manufacturers need to up the ante on their training and education for partners to ensure they’re equipped with the must-haves of inbound marketing.

During the webinar, titled: “Helping Your Partners Leverage Social Platforms,” Heather K. Margolis, President of Channel Maven Consulting revealed how organizations can guide their channel partners down the path of social media success.

To optimize communication, education and thought leadership via LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, organizations must use the three Es, which include the following:

  • Educate: Show partners how to better target current and prospective customers by running channel webinars. Organizations also can develop guides to share with partners, outlining how to use specific social platforms, Margolis advised. If companies don’t have the resources to run their own webinars, they also can send content and webinars to partners from outside sources and other industry thought leaders.
  • Engage: To help partners get excited about utilizing social media to develop relationships with current and potential customers, vendors and manufacturers must practice what they preach, according to Margolis. Companies must start their own organizational and personal accounts, and make sure their LinkedIn and Twitter profiles are up to date. From this point, partner engagement starts across social networks. Vendors and manufacturers must follow partners on LinkedIn and Twitter, consistently update their accounts, and update profiles with compelling content to share with their followers.
  • Enable: By sending partners resources, such as blog posts and webinars on how to use different social sites, organizations are providing best practices and high-level insights on how to improve social networking techniques. However, vendors and manufacturers also should send articles and blog posts on relevant industry topics — not just information on products and services — so they can update their accounts with relevant and educational content for their followers.

Once a prospect discovers and engages with a partner or company executive on LinkedIn or Twitter, they then have the incentive to visit the web site. Because the partner web site is the foundation of turning a prospect into a lead, and “you never get a second chance to make a first impression,” Margolis recommended that companies analyze and consider the following qualities of their partners’ web sites:

1. Can someone tell in 5 seconds what your partner does?
2. Is it too blank or too busy?
3. Are you using clip art? Or images another site uses?
4. Do people know how to reach partners (non-generic email address and a direct phone number)?
5. Is there a Call-to-Action (CTA)?

Organizations also must help partners understand how visitors are interacting on their sites, as well as what content they’re downloading and which pages they’re spending most time on. By implementing an analytics solution, partners will be able to determine the following:

  • Who is finding you?
  • Where are they coming from?
  • How long are they staying?
  • What are they looking at?

Watch an on-demand version of the webinar from Channel Maven Consulting to learn more about how to help partners optimize social media



About Alicia Fiorletta

Alicia Fiorletta is Senior Editor for Channel Marketer Report. Working closely with industry analysts and experts, Alicia reports on the latest news, technologies, case studies and trends coming to forefront in the channel marketing world. With a focus on emerging marketing strategies, including social, mobile and content for demand, Alicia hones in on new ways for organizations to market to and through their partner networks. Through her work with G3 Communications, Alicia also acts as Associate Editor for Retail TouchPoints, a digital publishing network focused on the customer-facing area of the retail industry.

View all posts by Alicia Fiorletta →

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