Working with third-party re-sellers, brokers or agents is a great way for brands to extend their reach and break into new or underserved markets. However, a bad experience with brokers can lead to a bad association with you. That’s why it’s critical to make sure you include partners in your marketing plan and provide them with the right tools and training to represent your brand in the right way.
Recruiting for success.
When working with brokers, many brands focus on getting in as many portfolios as possible so they can get in front of as many customers as possible. But, just as with any marketing plan, by refining your target and your messaging, you can actually find more success. Don’t focus on working with all brokers. Focus on identifying the right brokers. By narrowing your scope, you may end up in fewer portfolios, but the brokers you do have will be more likely to promote your products and services and more able to provide a better experience to the end user.
To help Spectrum grow its partner program, Crow created audience profiles that helped us focus our outreach on those partners we felt could best represent our brand. We then created a multi-touch campaign that made communicating with prospective partners more efficient and our messaging more consistent. The result was an increase in qualified partners, who were able to drive more sales and ensure a better brand experience for the end user.
Training builds affinity for your brand.
Obviously, the more your brokers know about your brand, the better they can sell your products and services. But that’s not the only reason to focus on training. Training is also a great way to nurture the relationship with your brokers. By providing a range of content that focuses not just on your products and services but also on the market, key regulations, and general sales tips, you’re adding real value for your brokers that will keep them engaged with your brand and keep your brand top-of-mind when they’re working with clients.
For Kaiser Permanente, Crow built a nurturing stream around training — a multi-touch campaign that focused primarily on helping our brokers understand the market and the current regulatory environment. This approach helped establish Kaiser as a true partner, focused on the broker’s success. Not only did this lead to more sales, but it also led to fewer regulatory concerns — which improved the brand perception across the region.
Cater your marketing materials for maximum impact.
How brokers present information to their clients is very different from how consumers engage with your brand on their own. Make sure you’re working with your brokers to understand the materials they need and how they use those materials to promote your products and services. By making simple adjustments to existing materials and creating unique tools and marketing pieces that cater to your brokers’ needs, you can see a significant impact on sales. Plus, the easier your brand is to work with, the more likely your broker will be to promote you to their clients.
AUL wanted to gain more portfolio share with agents. To help them accomplish this, we met with key selling partners to understand how our existing marketing materials were being used. What we found was that product videos were the primary sales tools agents used when meeting with dealers. So, we scaled back our other co-opted tactics and focused on creating more videos. Not only did we find savings by focusing our efforts, but we also armed our agents with the right tools to close more deals.
Using brokers, partners, and third-party resellers is a great way to grow your sales, and by following the simple rules outlined above, it’s also a great way to extend positive impressions of your brand. If you’re considering working with brokers or if you currently have a program in place for this, we’d love to help you build a marketing plan to help you attract, retain, and train the right brokers to reach your goals.
Email Hello@CrowCreativeAgency.com today to learn more and schedule a quick conversation.