Distributors in a business are inevitable. But the best way to get the most out of your distributors is important that you know to effectively manage them and even master the art to come out on top.
Distributors are ideally a company that operates in a sector and is the key to a supplier’s target market or any one of the key markets. A distributor has a vested interest in selling a company’s product proactively, keep stock of the company’s product/s, and without selling any competitive product/s of the company.
The territory of a distributor can be defined geographically and/or by the market sector. The supplier–distributor relation is vital, and with good management, a supplier could effectively manage his distributor/s by exerting quite a lot of influence.
Ways of managing distributors effectively
Effective relationships of suppliers with their distributors can be of great help in maximizing the revenues. The relationship is a complicated one that needs a lot of careful nurturing, along with setting boundaries. Businesses that understand the value of this relationship and pursue and manage this relationship are always ahead in the race.
Invest in the relation
The ability of a manufacturer to co-sell with its distributor is essential in the success of a business. This partnership represents much more than they could have done alone. Working together and engaging in social activities makes for a great partnership. Answer all the questions of your distributor and set out sales targets together to strengthen the tie and manage your distributors well.
Be a partner, and not a vendor
Distributors are the face of any manufacturing company. They are the people who can accentuate your brand promise with your customers. The message should be clear to the distributors that they are the partners of the company. Know your partners well, provide them with the tools that can improve their performance, and help them achieve their targets and earn money too. Help them become your partner and together you can succeed.
Jointly participate in promotional activities
It makes a lot of sense to jointly make your sales team participate in promotional activities along with your distributors. By appearing together and representing your business as a manufacturer or a supplier can help you generate a lot of potential leads and as well manage your distributors effectively. Moreover, this also helps your distributors understand the techniques of sales better with in-depth product knowledge.
Formalize a reporting structure
Formalizing a reporting strategy is a key factor in the success of a business. Also, careful consideration of the formal is important. Do not make the format or system too complex, as this will make the distributor procrastinate, and ignore too. It should be made easy for the distributor to deal with and allowing you to benchmark them.
The frequency of reporting should also be taken into consideration. Like for high volume and fast-moving products, a monthly report is good, and for longer sales process items, quarterly reports should be good enough.
The crux of the entire manufacturer–distributor relationship is that you need to work with your distributor to reap the rewards. It needs both time and money. Mutual respect and cooperation are the keys.