Recently promoted to the position of Director of Channel Marketing at Vertiv, a critical digital infrastructure provider, Song Lu is leading a program that strives to empower the company’s partner ecosystem with robust demand generation support.
In a recent conversation with Channel Marketer Report, Lu commented that partners are leaning into Vertiv’s channel marketing program, taking advantage of new opportunities to expand their business.
CMR – As Covid limited the ability of partners to rely on in-person events to engage their customers, have they become more vocal about wanting to be equipped with more digital marketing materials and tools?
Song Lu — Prior to the pandemic, some of our channel partners were already vocal about wanting to be equipped with more digital marketing materials and tools for Vertiv’s solutions. Their interest in marketing support from vendors has only increased during the past two years when they could no longer rely on in-person events to engage their customers. As a result, Vertiv had already been investing in this area prior to the pandemic, and that investment was helpful when we recently rolled out our new partner portal.
When it comes to generating quality leads that can be nurtured into sales opportunities, we find it works best when it is a mutually aligned, partnered effort between Vertiv and our channel partners.
CMR – Tell us more about the portal. How does it enable your partners?
Song Lu — Our partner portal provides access to exclusive benefits like deal registration, our rewards program, and support contacts. Our partners have access to the latest promotions and our ready-to-use marketing campaigns including co-branded collateral to promote joint offerings.
Partners may request to enroll with our through-customer marketing automation (TCMA) tool to syndicate Vertiv content. Our partners can get engagement results from the marketing materials they send through our TCMA portal.
Our partner portal is powered by a third-party platform, but it was meticulously designed with input from the Vertiv channel team to ensure it is useful to our partners from day one.
The portal also supports mobile-friendly access to information and sales tools on-the-go. We’re committed to being the easiest critical digital infrastructure technology provider to work with.
CMR – As you look to expand your channel ecosystem, are you focusing on a partner’s marketing capabilities?
Song Lu — When we go to market with our partners, we are certainly happy to help them promote our solutions and brand – and also help them absorb and digest the complexity that comes with critical digital infrastructure. Most importantly, we are looking for partners that share similar values as Vertiv – that focus first on truly understanding a customer challenge, and then on delivering with customer-oriented outcomes in mind.
We do the work of training and enabling partners at no added cost. It’s essential for our channel partners to become knowledgeable on Vertiv’s solutions and to collaborate with us, so that they do not leave sales opportunities on the table.
Especially during this time with multitudes of uncertainties, we place particular importance on transparency and managing stakeholder expectations. Reputation is an invaluable commodity in the channel.
CMR – As you monitor the performance of your channel program, what are some of the metrics you prioritize?
Song Lu — Like our partners, we value business outcomes derived from our partnership opportunities. Some of the key metrics we will monitor are deal registration outcomes, along with other types of engagement metrics on our partner portal.