How to Become a Savvy Business Advisor: A Channel Account Manager’s Road Map for Success

How to Become a Savvy Business Advisor: A Channel Account Manager’s Road Map for Success

As a CAM, you’ve devoted a lot of energy to developing business relationships and learning about how to make the most out of those connections. But to become a true business advisor, you’ll need to fully understand the ins and outs of every partner business. If you’re serious about building partnerships within the channel, demonstrate your commitment to the industry by respecting everyone’s respective role in the supply chain.

With a polished skill set, a strong sense of professionalism and a bit of training, you’ll be able to speak directly to partner businesses’ pain points — and connect the right people with the right resources and solutions.

To do so, you need to first earn credibility the old-fashioned way, by becoming someone your partners can trust and turn to for advice. Getting there is hard work, but it’s all worth it. Start studying your partner businesses to figure out what makes them tick, and then determine how you can improve their bottom line.

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Understanding How a Partner Business Makes Money

Step One: Appreciate and Respect the Supply Chain

Consider how each organization, person, task, data point, tool and asset impact the integrity of the process before making any hasty changes or decisions. Resist the temptation to eliminate parts of the supply chain in order to save money or automate processes without fully considering what’s at stake.

Step Two: Pay Attention to Organizational Structure

Take time to understand how your partner business makes money and what they must accomplish in order to turn a profit. From billing and collections to sales and advertising, there’s a lot that has to get done. Remember that a smaller partner might have different needs than an enterprise, and develop strategies and offerings with both in mind.

Step Three: Facilitate Success for the Front End

When consumers visit professional websites on their smartphones, they are enjoying a clean user experience thanks to a lot of work on the front end. What they see is the result of a long process that the customer benefits from, but likely knows very little about. While the front end of a business tends to get all the credit, they share systems with and often need just as much support as the back end, so give them the services and IT infrastructure they need to thrive.

Step Four: Give Credit to the Back End

The back end is everything an ordinary consumer doesn’t see. It’s all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes, and it doesn’t resemble the neatly-packaged front-end presentation that the customer admires. Managing databases, processing orders, handling finance — everything is easier with the right resources, and there are a lot of departments that demand your attention and support.

Step Five: Recognize and Rectify Inefficiencies

As a successful CAM — and emerging business advisor — your job involves helping partners reach long-term goals through a combination of insourcing and outsourcing. Provide clients with the best cloud offerings, the right managed services, industry-specific technology solutions and professional IT support, and you’ll empower them to simplify everything from inventory and customer support to research and development and more.

Step Six: Consult Like the Pro You Are

In your quest to become a top business advisor, you will continue honing your expertise and eventually cultivate a reputation for solving problems on the fly. This may mean establishing yourself as a consultant and conducting business as such. People look to you for advice about how to handle emerging technologies and solve problems in the supply chain, and you’ll want to be able to tell them what to do next. By investing in high-level training, you’re putting yourself in a better position to understand each partner’s business and how you fit into the equation.

What’s Next? Scout Out New Opportunities for Growth!

As you master the art of pleasing every partner business, you’ll become a pro at helping everyone get the quality service they deserve. Consider how the needs of large and small partners differ from one another and develop new offerings that target a partner business’ operations, services, finance, product development, marketing and sales accordingly. To continue building value in a dynamic business world, find innovative ways to connect with partners new and old, and stay relevant by networking, upskilling, outsourcing and knowing when it’s time to bring in professionals who can take things to the next level.

Ready to Elevate?

As a vendor or reseller, working with a partner like Marketopia means that you don’t have to spend your time training and creating lead generation for your partners – let our team of IT industry leaders handle it instead. At Marketopia, we speak the language of the channel and have the expertise it takes to support your business goals. We know the channel inside and out and have designed cutting-edge marketing strategies for CAMs who are ready to grow and build a better future. Let’s Get Started

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Daily Disciplines for Successful Salespeople

Daily Disciplines for Successful Salespeople

As a sales professional, it’s your mission to be dedicated to both the wants of your prospects and the growth of your own craft. It’s an ongoing pursuit that is never truly perfected due to changes in the market, but by following certain disciplines, you will successfully accomplish this mission. In this blog, we’ll share three disciplines that you and the rest of your sales team need to follow to close more sales.

Win Over Prospects the Right Way with Marketopia’s Daily Disciplines for Salespeople

 

Be Adaptable

A successful salesperson does what unsuccessful salespeople won’t. When it comes to sales, it’s not your pitch that closes, but how well you can cater to your prospect’s needs on the fly. If 2020 has shown the sales world anything, it’s that you must be dynamic in your craft and be willing to change your tactics and adhere to current market demands completely. Understand that this means going beyond the pitch you’ve rehearsed and drilled into your own head, because using a scripted approach may do more to hinder than help you. Know when something works and no when and how to change it when it doesn’t. You should make a point to audit your performance after every conversation.

Some points to take into consideration when understanding your prospects include their:

  • Industry
  • Goals
  • Challenges
  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • The quicker you can identify and understand all of these, the easier it will be for you to close
  • Stop Pitching and Start Listening

Too many salespeople rush to get their pitch out and overwhelm their prospects with information. What they should be doing is getting to know their needs, desires and expectations beforehand and incorporate those specifics into the solution the pitch offers.

Don’t rush to get your pitch out. Keep the prospect talking. If they’re talking, there is always time for the pitch later. It’s vital that you first make the prospect feel like their concerns are valid, and you can only validate them by showing them you’re intently listening. This means not interrupting them, maintaining eye contact and understanding their body language. If the prospect feels like their concerns and ideas are above all else, you’ve made a sale.

Another handy trick is to take mental notes of three to four points they touched on and how they relate back to your pitch. Once they’ve finished, connect the dots back to your pitch.

 

Keep Your Sales Skills Sharp

While being adaptable to change and putting your prospects’ needs first will be the difference makers when closing, there is no replacement for the old-fashioned art of the sale. The best way to keep these skills sharpened is to always keep them against the grinding stone – in other words, turning every conversation into a pitch.

If you think about it, the point of every conversation is to put an idea into another person’s head. For example, if you can make your pitch as natural as asking someone about their musical tastes and telling them why they’d really enjoy your favorite musical artist or band, you’ll be that much more comfortable asking a prospect about their concerns and pitching them your solution. When you’re always on, you’ll never be off your best.

 

How Marketopia Can Help

If you’re looking for a better way to bolster your close rate, we’re here to hold the door open. Marketopia has developed sales training webinars, Quick Connect YouTube videos and other professional development resources that will help you build out your sales strategies both now and in the future. From our appointment setters to our sales, content, design, event and digital teams, partnering with us means that you’ll have an entire agency supporting your dreams for growth.

Connect with us today to get immediate guidance on how to close deals more effectively.

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3 Ways to Keep Your Business Healthy in a Pandemic

3 Ways to Keep Your Business Healthy in a Pandemic

Your clients look to you to keep their businesses and data carefully protected no matter what they’re up against. So, when a disaster strikes that changes everything—from canceling industry events to closing down entire school districts—your clients are going to turn to you for support. In situations like this, they’ll be looking for three major sources of support: backup and disaster recovery, business continuity and remote access.

Amp Up Your Incoming Leads with The Lead Generators™

Let’s look at each one of these services in more detail to dive deeper into how you can reassure your clients you’ve got their back in tough times.

 

1. Backup & Disaster Recovery

If your clients aren’t already using your backup & disaster recovery solutions, now is the time to help them understand the importance of this kind of protection. Not only can you offer the solutions themselves, but you can also help them with immediate and long-term planning to build out a roadmap for their business protection. According to Ponemon, 39% of SMBs don’t have a plan in place. Don’t let your clients be a part of that statistic and put their business success at risk.

 

2. Business Continuity

11.4% of companies don’t have the internal resources to devote to business continuity, and another 13.6% don’t have buy-in from leadership, according to Continuity Central. Helping your clients create and implement their business continuity strategies means you’ll be shouldering the burden in terms of resources on behalf of your clients and delivering incredible value for their businesses.

 

3. Remote Access

As schools and businesses close in cities all over the country and local healthcare workers are asking for voluntary isolation, your clients are facing the very real possibility that their workforce might not be able to come in to work. Not only can you reassure them that you can keep them running thanks to remote monitoring and management, but you can also help make sure they have the right collaboration and device management solutions to enable remote work in case of a crisis.

Worried that your clients aren’t getting the message about how important these solutions are? Concerned that your clients and prospects don’t even know you offer this kind of support? That’s where our full marketing agency comes in, offering everything from print campaigns to email and social media plans to make sure your audience knows exactly what value you bring to the table.

Get in touch with Marketopia’s expert lead generation team today and see how we can help you spread the word about all of the ways you’re helping your clients grow.

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4 Ways Outbound Marketing Can Help You in the New Year 

4 Ways Outbound Marketing Can Help You in the New Year 

It’s 2020, and everyone knows inbound marketing campaigns are here to stay. But neglecting outbound marketing campaigns is the easiest way to leave money on the table when it comes to closing deals, and industry leaders are taking note.

Fortunately, outbound marketing services have evolved alongside technology, and the channel’s top businesses know how to take advantage of these developments.

Marketers are no longer relegated to bombarding the masses with irrelevant(and often ignored) ads on billboards or commercials. Instead, nuanced messages are reaching primary prospects via other channels, allowing appointment setters, speakers, and companies to connect with consumers in a more meaningful way than ever before.

 Outsource Your Outbound Marketing Needs

Tech-savvy businesses are learning to target their desired audiences using highly specific messages, in part because of the digital receipts we leave on a daily basis. This data enables marketers to supplement their digital marketing campaigns with traditional strategies, with the two strategies working in tandem to close deals and improve your bottom line.

In this blog, we’ll explore how you can use the latest outbound marketing tools to secure clients, increase revenue and scale your business in the new year.

 

What is Outbound Marketing?

Outbound marketing involves direct communication between your business and your potential prospects. Yes, developing leads via content marketing is critical, but following up with traditional modes of person-to-person communication minimizes the risk of customers being lost in a sea of videos, webinars and podcasts.

The easiest way to watch your business grow via lead generation is by supplementing the latest inbound marketing strategies with tried-and-true outbound techniques.

 

Appointment Setting

Never underestimate the power of interpersonal communication—even in the digital age. For those times when you can’t connect with prospects face-to-face, outbound calling is key. In fact, industry thought leaders believe that the outbound call is perhaps the final and most important step in B2B outbound marketing campaigns. Roughly 90% of leads can be generated through these interactions, so ignoring them should not be an option. Hiring tenacious and productive employees ensures your person-to-person contact has a human touch—which is exactly what you need to do to take your business to the next level.

 

Speaking Engagements

Everyone knows that delivering a message in person can have a huge impact on how your marketing team attracts and delights audience. Landing a speaking engagement can be a huge opportunity for your brand, but you could be missing out on important leads if you don’t follow through with these contacts. Getting people’s attention is only the first step. To convert these leads into customers, you must continue to communicate with them long after the event concludes. Outbound marketing practices can inform prospects about events and encourage them to register and attend—but targeted post-event communication is the best way to convert these warm leads into your newest clients.

 

Targeted Paid Ads

Inbound marketing strategies are great for those who are already searching for information, services and products online, but the benefits of digital marketing extend beyond that. Metadata allows companies to continually collect information about consumer preferences and habits, enabling the best organizations to design more effective and relevant outbound messages. Developing highly targeted ads, videos, direct mailers and newsletters may be expensive, but it can improve the odds of your company finding the right prospects at the right time and via the right channel.

 

Personalized Messages

The cornerstone of any successful marketing campaign is the cultivation of a personal and authentic voice that your brand can use to turn leads into clients or customers. Outbound marketing services facilitate the delivery of your carefully crafted messages and emails by endowing them with a human touch. Personalized scripts can help outbound marketing campaigns by empowering a calling team to be more profitable.

 

Outbound Marketing and ROI

Inbound marketing services like content creation may be cheaper to outsource than, say, appointment setting, but at what cost? Striking a balance between the two approaches is the best way to generate leads and secure new clients.

 

How Marketopia Can Help

Contact us today to learn more about how we can take care of your outbound needs. Doing so will free up time to stay focused on your business’s primary mission.

You might be wondering how outbound marketing techniques could help you and your team break records and reach new heights. Like anything in the professional realm, not all outbound campaigns are created equally. Hiring quality staff is the only way to guarantee that your needs are met.

You don’t have to go it alone.

Our expert appointment setters are trained to turn warm leads into sales, content into conversions and prospects into clients. Contact us today  to learn more about how our vision for your success can become a reality.

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Inbound Marketing Strategies

Inbound Marketing Strategies

This may come as a shock, but people hate advertisements. 

Unfortunately, the primary way of informing your prospects about the great products and services you offer is through advertising. Even if your offering is communicated in a great ad, it’s easy for it to get lost in the marketing noise that most people ignore anyway. 

But what if there were a way to show your prospects what you can do in a way they may actively seek out? This isn’t madness or witchcraft; it’s called inbound marketing, and it is more powerful than you might think. In this blog, we’ll explore the components of inbound marketing and how you can leverage its effectiveness to grow your business. 

 

What is Inbound Marketing? 

Inbound marketing is the art of turning ads into relevant content for the prospects you’re hoping to do business withComprehensive inbound marketing is made up of quite a few important pieces. 

 

Content Marketing 

According to Content Marketing Institute, content marketing is “a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.” In other words, it’s the key way that you can share content with your audience that helps them understand the value you offer as a company.  

 

SEO 

The trick to successful content marketing is writing content with search engine optimization (SEO) in mind. These are the common words and phrases most businesses use when they search for something online. Writing for SEO is essentially baking first-page ad placement directly into your content without spending a dime. If you’ve ever looked into pay-per-click advertising, you’re already aware of the high prices associated with it. 

 

Social Media Marketing 

Another facet of inbound marketing is social media marketing (SMM). This is where a company creates a persona for their social media accounts and dispense intriguing information and questions to generate engagements with prospects. Wendy’s created a lot of buzz in the 2010s with their witty (and sometimes downright snarky) online persona, but the success was undeniable. Your MSP can create a persona for itself as well. It should always sound smart and helpful, but don’t be afraid to make yourself stand out from your competitors. 

 

Email Marketing 

The last part of inbound marketing is the strategy you use. This is how you put your SEO content and persona to work. One of the most popular methods is known as an email “drip” campaign. Once you attract a prospect with an initial article or social media post and they’re considering your MSP as a partner, you prompt them to sign up for regular information to be sent to their email. Over the next several weeks, you send freebies like eBooks, eGuides and other informative media that offer a collection of information and benefits that promote your MSP as the solution. This builds trust and sends prospects further down the sales funnel. 

 

Serious Savings 

Inbound marketing is rapidly becoming a more effective way to promote brands at less cost than standard outbound marketing. A 2011 HubSpot study found that leads obtained from inbound marketing efforts cost 62 percent less than leads from outbound marketing efforts. The savings happen because you are placing your brand directly where your prospects are.  

 

How Marketopia Can Help 

If you’re reading up until this point, the effectiveness of inbound marketing remains apparent because this entire blog is an example of it. Get your business’s message out there with the help of Marketopia. From our appointment setters to our sales, content, design and digital teams, you’ll have a whole agency behind your company telling its story better than you could have ever imagined. Contact us today and let’s start writing yours. 

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Being a Better CAM: Understanding Your Partners

Being a Better CAM: Understanding Your Partners

As a vendor, you pride yourself on the lanes of distribution you’ve built in the channel. But a factor that vendors often overlook is their ongoing relationships with current partners. While you may meet contractual obligations with a courteous demeanor, are you genuinely understanding your partners and their needs? Doing so may unlock further business potential. In this blog, we’ll help you walk a mile in your partner’s shoes by becoming an evolved channel account manager (CAM) and talk about what you need to know to understand their world better.

To support your partners, you must improve your role as a channel account manager. A great CAM is a jack-of-all-trades who is part private investigator and part problem solver, all while being fully versed in integrated sales and marketing methodology and tactics. This means you leverage your knowledge and skills to find the right answers that fix problems. To do this, it is a must for you to become familiar with your partner’s world.

Become A Better Channel Account Manager 

What CAMs Look For

Like your own company, your partner’s company has many unique needs and aspirations with a plan to deal with both of them in today’s channel. To better help them meet theirs, you need to use your CAM skills to examine their unique attributes. These attributes include:

  • Business Plans
  • Organizational Structures
  • Ways of Making Money
  • Talent Challenges
  • Demand Generation Pain Points

 

Business Plans

A CAM comes to understand their client’s business plans by first building a rapport with them. This is what breaks down any barriers and gives them the confidence in you to share their current goals, pain points and ideas on how to address them. As a CAM, you must take into account your experience and knowledge of the channel to provide your partners with the most refined version of their plan possible.

 

Organizational Structures

While the business plan is the execution, the structure of your partner’s company is the arrangement of rules and parts that follow the execution. A CAM’s responsibility is to determine if each component and the conditions it adheres to are the best fit for the company. Any that are not performing to their fullest potential should be improved, removed or supported with additional parts that were not present beforehand.

 

Ways of Making Money

That’s what business is all about, right? CAMs must be on the lookout for opportunities that are being ignored, missed or a threat to the partner’s success. This falls back on your private investigator and problem-solving skills, all reliant on your expert knowledge.

 

Talent Challenges

Employees are the operators of the moving parts who are guided by the business plan, held together by the structure while trying to make that profit. Skilled team members can make or break the success of any company, and as a CAM, you must recognize both talent and a lack thereof. You can recommend trainings, seminars and other educational programs to overcome any shortcomings. But if a weak link is about to break, you need to bring it to your partner’s attention.

 

Demand Generation Pain Points

While you’re helping your partner build a better situation internally, you should also be considering their client-facing efforts. After all, if they’re carrying or using your products and services, their success is reflective upon you. A CAM knows the channel and what competitors do to stand out in it. You must take that knowledge and quantify it with your partner’s unique selling points to make them stand out in the channel.

 

Building Relationships

Being the CAM your partner needs begins with fostering a relationship, but as with any relationship, it takes effort and care to grow over time. To see how this relationship improves, set goals or mile markers on things you want to accomplish with your partner. This way, you can see your progress and understand how and why things worked out or went astray. If you want a partner to help you become the best CAM you can be, get in touch with Marketopia today and see how we can help you meet your goals.

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