We are using cookies to give you the best experience on our site. By continuing to use our website without changing the settings, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. View our Privacy Policy.

Common Complaints from Channel Marketers pt 3

Learn more about common complaints from channel marketers in this Part 3 guide from Relayware.

Relayware Partner Relationship Management

Common Complaints from Channel Marketers pt 3


Posted on November 18, 2014 by Mike Maturo, Sales Development Representative

As I mentioned in my previous post, I talk to many prospective PRM customers every day. What I hear at all levels from channel marketers, partner managers, and even CMOs and CEOs cover three categories: technological, behavioral, and portal. Previously, I covered the technological challenges and behavioral challenges both of which can be looked at in a more positive light. In the final post in this series, I'll look at the complaints I hear about partner portals.

“Portals, especially complex ones, need managed services.”

Not anymore. The best portals, like those from Channeltivity or Relayware, let you manage portals as easily as a self-serve Content Management System, even with complex portals that include deal registration, a partner locator, single-sign-on, and personalized content.

Managed services are not necessarily a thing of the past but they’re less relied upon. While there’s usually some setup and training required with any PRM or partnering automation package, once it’s up-and-running staffers can make changes themselves. One customer of Relayware’s created a massive partner portal replete with documents, co-branding, opportunity management, and other important features. With self-service being standard, they didn’t have to increase their FTE (full-time employee) count, even as they saw partner revenue multiplying.

“Portals are mostly useless.”

An old 2011 CRN article called portals “mostly useless.” While it may have been true back then, today it could not be further from the truth.

Today, portals can be a powerful software tool, in conjunction with channel professionals and smart practices. Portals can, for example, enable partners to discuss relevant topics and share strategies and stories.

You probably already have the staff. You might also have good practices, like executives demanding partner reports on participation, satisfaction, revenue, and deals. A portal is not a silver bullet: they work better when surrounded by great staff and practices.

“Partners are mobile, so a portal doesn't meet their needs.”

Some channel marketers and managers still complain about their partners being mobile users of their portals…and subsequently being disappointed. Many portals are still not mobile friendly. This means jeopardized revenue, especially if marketing materials cannot be viewed or deals cannot be immediately entered while a partner is at the customer site.

It’s easy to quell the pain by asking that your portal software be mobile responsive and available as a separate mobile app.

The Bottom Line: There are great examples of partner portals when used in conjunction with good practices, are easy to update, and are run by a great team.