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7 Steps to Building Channel Relationships That Work

Dec 25, 2014

Written by: Walter Ruckes
(View Author Bio)

Seven expert tips that will help you create long-lasting and productive relationships in your sales channels. 

Engage Your Distribution Channel


The biggest key?to successful?lasting changes?is to associate?with the right?people – partners?“who believe in you?and in whom?you believe."

7 Steps to Building Channel Relationships That Produce Results

In his book “Change or Die,” author Alan Duetschman says that when faced with a challenge or a need to change, we like to think that the magic comes from discovering the right processes or series of events. Although that seems like the most logical approach, it isn’t the most effective. The biggest key to successful lasting changes is to associate with people – “who believe in you and in whom you believe.”

Do your channel partners believe in you?

Do you believe in them? If not, it’s time to start building relationships that provide mutually beneficial results. It can be done when you focus first on providing value to your partners.

Putting Your Channel First

At the same time you are engaging and building relationships with customers, you should be building strong relationships with your channel partners. Creating a highly functional channel is very similar to creating a highly effective interpersonal relationship. Every day manufacturers have to ask a key question:

“What can I do to make this relationship more successful?”

This is a very different question than:

“How can I get my partner to cooperate so this relationship is successful?”

When you put the needs of your partners first, you are more likely to find trust, loyalty and the desire to reciprocate.

So how do you do that?

By building your channel initiatives around these 7 Steps:

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Walter Ruckes BI WORLDWIDE

Walter Ruckes

Vice President
Sales and Channel Engagement

As Vice President of BI WORLDWIDE’s Sales & Channel Engagement Group, Walter Ruckes' primary focus is to develop sales and channel engagement strategies and solutions that change the behaviors of sales people, distributors, dealers and channel sales representatives. An expert in sales incentive strategy, he educates sales professionals around the world on how to best engage their sales force through sales engagement strategies, solutions and best practices.