There has never been a more critical time to build customer and partner loyalty. Purchase decisions are increasingly driven by price, competition is fierce and product commoditization is alive and well. At the same time, marketing and sales organizations are chartered to drive more top line performance from its current sales and distribution channels. Enter incentive and loyalty programs. Here are some reasons why you need an Incentive Automation-powered incentive program strategy.
incentive programs are necessary to keep pace with competitors
The vast majority of companies today employ incentive programs as a means to boost channel partner productivity, gain market share, etc. So as not to be left in their dust, channel program neophytes need to do the same. Note, though, that competition for channel partners’ attention and loyalty is not about the “what” (having an incentive program) – it’s about the “how” (designing programs that are nimbler, resonate with your audience, and are easier to consume).
Incentivization drives individual partners to step up their performance and demonstrate their value – and gives channel practitioners insights into those partners and, over time, what motivates them. Thus, strategic incentivization can act as an investment guide for which partners and which programs to mix and leverage to maximize your ROIPI (return on incentive program investment).
Incentivization can be an effective means for reducing overstock. But realize that such programs have no bearing on long-term channel partner loyalty.
incentive programs are the engagement stair-steps to partners’ long-range advancement
Channel tier advancement can be a good incentive for driving long-range performance … but the operative phrase is “long-range.” Incentive programs, implemented strategically, can act as a stair-step mechanism to advance channel partners from one level to the next faster, while keeping partners motivated and engaged (loyal) in the interim.
create market maneuverability
Are you a software company pivoting from on-premise to cloud? Incentivize channel partners to register and close cloud deals. Are you a building manufacturer introducing an innovative new home construction material product? Design an incentive program that rewards partners to become certified. For consumer marketers, run – or test - new product promotions and drive trial, using reward-based campaigns.