Proposed market routes for PERFORMER – communication and distribution channels
Good communication is central to the success of library programs and services. Even if it is just a one-time event, keeping in contact with everyone who attended could result in invaluable contacts or lifelong friendships. However, contrary to popular belief, the event is not done when everyone leaves. There’s still more to do, so each PERFORMER partner should be ready for implementing more advanced communication strategy which uses different communication channels.
Currently, several direct and indirect market routes are available for manufacturers of innovative products, including Building Energy Management Systems. The following article describes selected potential communication channels in detail, taking into account opinions of the project partners on the best options for creating relationships with potential users of PERFORMER solution.
The first group of the communication channels refers to direct selling of PERFORMER which is the most common form of sales at the start of a new business, in many cases hyper-critical to obtaining a first round of financing. As the business grows, as the relevant markets emerge or mature, formalized sales models are put in place to give organized momentum to the sales process. Direct selling may continue to be appropriate, especially if the product is complex in nature making it challenging for 3rd parties to represent without continual direct assistance.
Indirect selling (Channel Sales) tends to become appropriate when the packaging of the product (including all the relevant go-to-market messaging) becomes simplistic enough that a 3rd party can adequately represent it to their customers in local geographic or specific industry market segments. Price points also play a key role in choosing a sales model — high priced products tend to be easier to sell directly due to extensive product expertise and sales resource requirements, whereas low priced products tend to move more fluidly through an indirect channel or mass-market model. But alas, there are many variations of selling so it may take some analytical and intellectual effort to choose the primary model or models that fit the evolution of your business and products.
Indirect sales refer to the sale of a good or service by a third-party, such as a partner or affiliate, rather than a company’s personnel. Indirect sales may be used in conjunction with a company’s direct sales efforts or may be used in lieu of hiring. Indirect sales are often made through resellers, such as specialty stores and big box retailers.
Indirect sales can allow a company to increase sales quickly without having to hire more sales personnel. In some cases, however, indirect sales may lead to reduced control of the brand message and poorer customer service because the company cannot manage indirect sales teams easily. Companies often resort to indirect sales when the demand for the product is outpacing the ability of the company to hire competent sales people, or when the price of the product is too low to justify a large sales force.
When choosing a communication channels, there are multiple factors to keep in mind. Not only do we have to assess how our competitors are selling their products, but we should also consider the costs of these various methods in addition to customer preferences. To determine the appropriate communication channel, it is also necessary to identify the people we want to communicate with, research how they obtain information, consider the complexity of the message we want to communicate, decide whether we want the communication to be interactive etc. In other words, if we don’t speak to customers via the right channel, we can’t fully engage with them in meaningful ways. The sooner we recognize which channels are best for PERFORMER business, the quicker we will see a return on your investment. Once we determine the ideal sales channels for PERFORMER business’ needs, then we can add any complementary marketing efforts and watch our system fly off the shelves.