Channel partners allow business-to-business suppliers to tap certain parts of the market more economically. But some partners are highly profitable and generate a large volume of business for the supplier year after year, others less so. Suppliers should ask two questions. Is it them—that is, are the partners giving us the attention we deserve? Or is it us—do we have the right incentives and support in place to allow them to succeed? The supplier in the chart redesigned its channel program to steer more training, compensation and co-marketing opportunities to a select group of partners, which now are on the path to stronger growth.
Matthew Crupi is a partner and Lucas Martin is a principal with Bain & Company. They are based in Dallas.