A manufacturer who sells via rep firms and distributors has a tough row to hoe when it comes to sales training. ¬†If they were your own employees, you could force them to sit through the classes. ¬†With non-employees, you have to ask nicely and hope. ¬†Your own employees need to please only you. ¬†Rep/distributor employees need to please every one of the multiple manufacturers they represent. ¬†Your own employees work in the same building. ¬†Reps and distributors are spread out all over creation.
Many manufacturers have turned to webinars and videos to help address these issues, but frankly, they only address the third one. ¬†(Assuming of course they pay attention.)
A talk radio show makes your rep/distributor training efforts dramatically more effective.
Think about it. ¬†You do an ongoing series of interviews with real live sales pros and managers from your partner firms about best practices, case studies, success stories, applications, problem-solving… ¬†You “narrowcast” them to your targeted audience and archive them for on-demand listening. With that you can leverage:
The Relationship Effect: ¬†The focused one-on-one attention of an interview grabs a lot more of the interviewee’s mind share for you – and for the long term.
The Celebrity Effect: ¬†What an awesome way to recognize folks for good work! ¬†Put ‘em on a pedestal – on the radio – to share their stories.
The Reference Effect: ¬†A fellow distributor has more credibility than you do when talking about how to get more value from repping for you.
The Networking Effect: ¬†distributors want to get to know each other more than they want to get to know you. ¬†You, grab more mind share by facilitating¬†that networking and knowledge sharing.
The Social Effect: ¬†A dialogue is always more compelling than a one-way monologue.
Re-usability: ¬†Much (if not most) of the interview content will also be relevant to customers.
So by all means continue with the webinars and videos. ¬†But also break out from the pack and really capture the attention of those reps and distributors.¬† Interview ‘em and share the share their wisdom far and wide. ¬†Hmmmmmmm… ¬† I wonder if interviewing customers on a talk radio show would build relationships and grow mind share with them too…