If you’re involved in the Business Intelligence (BI) channel game, odds are, you’ve got a pretty strong grasp on the changes affecting the BI marketplace and the opportunities that change presents to the channel.
Think evolving technology, data (types, sources and overall volumes), user types, usage patterns and delivery demands (namely cloud or on-premise). Throw rapidly growing cross-industry demand in the mix and you’ve got one spicy cocktail! For all the details, check out our last blog post on the topic, What are the top 3 factors disrupting the Business Intelligence channel?
So once you’re able to pinpoint the disrupting forces gripping the industry, how do you then take advantage for personal growth and gain?
The first step is to identify and overcome the three major vendor-related challenges facing BI resellers today: Prohibitive business models, the professional services paradox coupled with customer disengagement, as well as complex contracts and empty promises.
1. Prohibitive business models
Like pricing, vendor business models in the BI industry have a nasty habit of being self-serving, complex and murky – with plenty of ‘gotchas’.
For many BI vendors, the immediate goal is to increase short-term revenue, without considering the long-term success of their channel partners and the ongoing viability of channel relationships. This self-interested and prohibitive modus operandi ensures minimal vendor input, negated ROI for the channel and a deterioration of relationships over time.
Vendor duplicity is also commonplace, where BI vendors claim to have 100 percent indirect – channel-based – business models when they see an opportunity for a ‘quick win’, but actually ‘cherry pick’ the best leads to win and service directly.
That’s why Yellowfin’s go-to-market strategy in the UK is purely through resellers and ISV partners. It’s simple. What you see is what you get: We say we distribute all our leads to our partner network; and we do.
2. Professional services paradox and customer disengagement
So who really owns the customer relationships? It’s a simple question, which often elicits very complex responses. Significant confusion exists within most BI vendor – partner relationships when it comes to customer ownership and management. So, who should be responsible for the customer experience (and therefore enjoy the resultant revenue)?
Often vendors want to ‘own’ the bulk of implementation revenue, but discard the responsibility and particulars of the relationship – or anything difficult. The same goes for professional service revenue too, with resellers often left with the work that the vendor assessed as ‘not worth it’.
Not only does this strain vendor – partner relations, but a lack of consistent, high quality and well-intentioned client relationship management can also see customer accounts flail and disappear over time.
So, we figure it’s best to keep it simple: Yellowfin lets its partners own their client relationships – from start to finish. We might offer support, but we’ll never take over. And, we never come between a reseller and professional services revenue. In fact, we often distribute professional services revenue to our partner network.
3. Empty promises and complex engagements
We all know the type. Maybe you’ve even known them intimately – those people who will say anything to keep the feel-good times a’rollin’ at the start of a new relationship. But failed promises and unmet expectations quickly sour a relationship.
Those in the BI channel need to be constantly vigilant of vendors who say they have their best interests at heart, promise the world, and then leave them high and dry – to fend for themselves. This point may be a little clichéd, but we think it’s pretty important.
Equally, those involved in the BI channel also need to be wary of vendors at the opposite end of the spectrum. The standoffish type that demands overlay complex agreements be signed and adhered to. Finding a balance is critical.
Yellowfin doesn’t believe in convoluted contracts between resellers and vendors. We believe in making BI partnerships easy. With simple contracts and easy-to-understand agreements, partnering with Yellowfin is straightforward. And, because our go-to-market strategy has always owed its success to strong partnerships, we know the product, services, sales and marketing support the BI channel needs to thrive.
Where to next?
With a deep understanding of BI partnerships, join Yellowfin to discuss how we can help the BI channel overcome these challenges at our Making BI Partnerships Easy event, 10th June at the Emirates Stadium, London.
For more information, and to register, GO HERE >