A marketing campaign that promotes the barcode and RFID solutions you provide can be a fantastic sales tool for resellers. Marketing is the best way to create awareness for your brand, and it also works to connect you with prospects. However, an unfocused, ill-timed, or misguided marketing campaign can end up hurting your business more than you might realize. The marketing mistakes resellers make lead to lost sales and lost time— two things vital to any business. Not to mention, marketing funds can be limited for data collection resellers, so it is important to maximize their effectiveness.
In order to ensure success for your marketing campaign—and your business as whole—avoid these common marketing mistakes resellers make:
Market development funds (MDF) are often offered by manufacturers to their channel partners. Although it may vary depending on the company and your relationship with the manufacturer, MDF is usually intended to market the vendor’s products and increase the public’s knowledge of a particular brand. Not knowing about MDF—or not realizing how much funding is available—may keep you from developing a marketing campaign in the first place. These funds offer businesses much more marketing flexibility than they can typically afford, so make sure you have a plan to use all of the funds you can secure.
The best way to maximize MDF is to develop a thorough marketing plan to present to vendors. Many are moving to a “request funds” model, in which they only offer funds to those who take the initiative to create a full-fledged marketing campaign. You won’t get what you don’t ask for, so this is an essential step to the process.
Simply obtaining market development funds and using them is not enough. In order to ensure that you are using your MDF effectively, it is important to show a return on investment (ROI). This is especially important if you intend to obtain similar funding in the future. You must prove that you spent the funds in a way that benefited both you and your vendor partner. Calculate the ROI of your marketing campaign by considering the number of generated leads, the cost per lead, impressions/engagements, and projected vendor sales. Once you have done this, make sure to clearly articulate these results to your vendor partner.
Out-of-date websites are much more common than they should be. If your website includes old information, outdated products, or broken/incorrect links, it could be costing your company sales and customers. Your website is supposed to be a hub of useful information that fosters a better reputation for your company and leads to improved sales. An out-of-date website can have the opposite effect.
Before applying for MDF and before launching any marketing campaigns, make sure to update your website with vendor logos, product information, and anything else that is vital to the success of your campaign. Double check to make sure web forms that allow users to gain access to downloadable content are working properly. A website that gives a bad impression of your company is one of the most dangerous marketing mistakes resellers make. Customers can be fickle, so don’t give them any reason to close out of your website and search for a different barcode reseller.
One of the biggest marketing mistakes resellers make is allowing their customers to believe they only sell one thing. They know you for the solution you provided to them, and they are unaware of the other products and services you offer. Your campaigns should be designed to show the breadth of products and services you offer and open a door for selling deeper into those accounts.
Don’t wait for customers to place another order to get the word out. Keep them informed of new products and also complementary technologies or ancillary services as you add them to your line card. For most barcode resellers, a majority of profits come from a small fraction customers—see what else you can sell to the customers you have.
Avoid Errors of Omission
Each of these mistakes isn’t related to something you are doing. They are all things you aren’t doing, resulting in limited business growth. Make marketing — the right way— a priority. Take advantage of the funds available to you, carefully plan to use resources in the most effective way possible, make sure your website is up to date, and start by contacting current customers to let them know the other products and services you offer.