Launching a new product in the channel is a big deal for any vendor. A new product should drive sales, as well as market share and brand awareness to make your business profitable. So, it’s worth putting measures in place to ensure that your launch is successful and these channel incentive program ideas are sure to make an impact.
Most vendors sell through channel sales partners, which means that the success or failure of any new product hinges on their enthusiasm and performance. So when it comes to creative ideas for launching a new product, what can you do to help your channel sales team sell?
Standing out with these five channel sales incentive program ideas
One way to do this is to launch a points-based channel sales incentive scheme. This can help ensure that your channel partners are passionate, knowledgeable and incentivized to sell your new product over competitive brands.
With such a scheme, there are things you can do to make sure it’s fully effective when launching a new product. The following five channel incentive program ideas will help you choose beneficial features to optimize your program and help your channel partner successfully sell your latest products:
1. Theme your scheme
Your incentive period could be anything from three months to a year, so you’ve got to find a way to keep partners engaged throughout. A theme is a great way to maintain interest. This could be a sports or a superhero theme, or a country theme, like France or Japan. It can be supported by a visually impressive online portal or microsite to keep your channel sales team revisiting, with themed rewards to capture interest. For this, communication is key; the more compelling you can make, for instance, your website or how you give out your rewards, the more effective your theme should be.
2. Make it interesting for all individuals to achieve
It’s important to engage with your partners as individuals rather than just as a team. A sales department is usually competitive by nature, so you need to ensure that everyone has a chance to achieve, rather than just the standard high performers. Consider tiering rewards, so that people with different capabilities and selling skills have a chance to win rewards too. This way they shouldn’t feel demotivated if they’re low on a leader board, while feeling their achievements are appreciated. This should give them the incentive to want to achieve more.
3. Incentivize with rewards
Quite simply, the rewards on offer should be desirable if you want individuals to make an effort to win them. You should either offer a range of different rewards within a reward catalog to appeal to more people on your channel sales team, or an alluring end goal that will get everybody excited across the board, like a chance to win a trip to an exotic destination. The more points earned through the incentive, the bigger the prize value redeemed.
4. Drive focus with a sales hype day
Consider holding a sales hype day to launch your channel sales incentive program with a bang. A presence of clever branding, product information, instant prizes and games, as well as complementary food and drink, can really create interest. If the incentive period is lengthy, it’s worth reminding the team of the incentives available with a momentum sales floor day midway through the scheme. This can help maintain motivation and engagement. Sales activation days can be applied across multiple venues and locations and held virtually or in person, ensuring that all sales teams can participate.
5. Incorporate training
Sales staff can only perform to their best abilities if they are equipped to do so. It’s vital that they are fully trained to understand new products to communicate all their unique selling propositions and benefits convincingly. They should also have all the necessary tools on hand such as an online resource library where they can get access to product literature or demonstration models to help them sell better. The easier you can make it for your channel sales team, the more they’re likely to engage with the product and the better they should perform for you.
Lastly, kickstart the channel incentive with some online learning. Encourage sales teams to participate in a series of online questions and quizzes to educate them in the new product they are being incentivized to sell. As a bonus, reward participants with points for successfully completing various tests and quizzes.
Helping you to maximize the success of your sales channel
Incentive programs are a broad tool that any business can make use of to push towards greater success. With a well-designed and well-implemented channel incentive scheme in place, you could really help your sales channels grow as effectively as possible and keep your brand at the forefront of people’s minds.
The Points-based reward incentives module included in 360insights’ market-leading The Channel Success Platform, provides channel businesses with the means to make an impactful product launch and drive future performance and sales. To learn more, simply get in touch and book your demonstration with us.
By Dan Kelly, Enterprise Sales Director, 360insights