Is your contractor loyalty program struggling to win partner mindshare and secure long-lasting relationships with your contractors, dealers and reps? If so, you're not alone. Many manufacturers pour time and energy into creating a loyalty program only to see it fall short of expectations.
By taking a deeper look at your partner experience, manufacturers can create a frictionless claims-based loyalty program that rewards partners for repeat purchases, builds strong relationships and positions your brand as the go-to manufacturer among your competitors.
Let’s start by discussing the overall partner experience and ways you can improve it.
Why Improving the Channel Partner Experience Is Important
The partner experience is based on the sum of every interaction a channel partner has with the supplier, as well as how the partner perceives and values these interactions. It’s this overall perception that drives partner retention, loyalty, advocacy and growth.
Channel partners consider five essential pillars when defining their experience:
- Product & Profit
- People & Alignment
- Programs & Tools
- Processes & Technology
- Promotion & Engagement
A poor partner experience risks losing partner mindshare to other suppliers, who are all vying for your partner’s attention. If you compromise on partner satisfaction in any of the five pillars, your organization could struggle with long-term success.
48% of global senior B2B marketing decision-makers reported that improving the experience of their ecosystem partners would be an area of focus to support their organization’s business strategy over the next two years.
—Forrester's 2021 Global Marketing Survey
Prioritize the partner experience. An organization can recruit all the right partners; build an award-winning partner program; invest in industry-leading technology, systems, and tools; offer generous incentives; and establish comprehensive partner enablement and partner demand programs. However, none of these actions alone will overcome a poor partner experience. They’re not enough to ensure success if partners don’t have a positive perception of your organization.
Related: Be Easier to Do Business With by Improving Channel Program Personalization.
4 Tips to Create a Frictionless Partner Experience
1. Simplify the Claims Process
The claims process should be as easy to follow as possible. Use clear and concise language, provide straightforward instructions, and offer multiple ways to submit claims. A key element of a building a positive partner experience is being easy for partners to do business with.
2. Personalize the Portal
The portal should be customized to the individual partner's needs. This means making information that is relevant to the partner's business easy to access, as well as providing tools and resources that can help partners succeed.
3. Streamline Processes and Technology
The technology behind the claims program should be streamlined to make it as efficient as possible for partners. This means using automated systems and integrations to reduce manual work, freeing up time for them to focus more on their business objectives.
4. Collect Data Strategically
The data collected through the claims program should be used strategically to drive business growth. Make sure your program is collecting the right data (while protecting the privacy of partners), then use it to make informed decisions that are in the best interest of your organization and partners.
Build the best claims-based contractor loyalty program with the expert advice in our white paper Enhance the Channel Partner Experience With a Frictionless Claims Process.