Building a high impact channel strategy requires companies to consider sales coverage, pre and post-sale customer requirements, market potential and the cost of sales. For that reason it isn’t prudent to approach all customers with one sales channel.
Employing the appropriate mix of sales channels enables gains in selling productivity by lowering the cost of sales to the organization and maximizing reach into the marketplace. To determine the best channel strategies, B2B companies have four things to consider; market potential, sales coverage, cost of sales and pre and post-sale customer support.
What is the Market Potential?
Total market size needs to be quantified but only to identify the more important value, addressable market opportunity. Most businesses have a unique selling proposition that resonates with a portion of the overall market. This piece of the market represents your addressable market opportunity and the best place to focus your marketing efforts.
What is Sales Coverage?
The optimal channel strategy provides sales coverage to successfully grow your B2B business. Having a clear understanding of your product line, the nature and behavior of your target market and typical sales cycle are all key to understanding your sales coverage requirements. When deployed properly, your channel strategy provides reach into the marketplace enabling the appropriate amount of customer contact to support your business goals.
What is the Cost of Sales?
When choosing your sales channel, you must consider the associated cost of each channel alternative. Direct salespeople, independent reps, outbound telesales, ecommerce and distribution are all available options, but which one will maximize your market opportunity? It’s best to choose a channel that is replicable, scalable and sustainable.
What are the Pre & Post-Sale Customer Requirements?
Customer expectations and support before and after the sale dictate which sales channel strategies will be most effective for your B2B business. What works in shorter, simpler sales cycles won’t necessarily transfer over to complex selling scenarios.