Is your MDF spend helping you, your partner, both or neither?

Posted by Matt Hodkinson
24-Aug-2016 10:43:00

Blog Posts

Without an objective and a clear plan of action, marketing can be a risky endeavour - especially if a vendor and supplier are working in collaboration. If your ROI is hard to predict and difficult to measure, your goals are mis-aligned or benefits are unfairly weighted, your joint efforts will be doomed to failure from the get-go. So what’s the solution, and how can you wring every last drop of value from your marketing budget?

With the right approach, your Marketing Development Fund (MDF) spend can actually help you and your partner in equal measure, with ongoing benefits. By taking the following steps, your MDF will be put to the very best use, resulting in maximum marketing success.

1. Agree your goals

First thing’s first: goal setting. Before embarking on your joint marketing campaign and committing your MDF budget, start by agreeing on what you are trying to achieve. Remember that vendor and supplier will have slightly different objectives, so it’s important to work together for mutual benefit. Without a common incentive, your efforts may end up being one-sided, so this step is vital to make the most of your MDF spend.

2. Set up campaign tracking

Next up, you’ll need to put the mechanisms in place to track the success of your marketing campaigns. Then, once your campaign is live, you can measure the results in real-time and regularly review and tweak your strategy as needed. Without the right tracking in place, your MDF spend could be going to waste without your knowledge, so this insight is absolutely vital.

3. Perform milestone check-ups

At every milestone of your marketing campaign, make sure there is there parity in the upside. Constantly review your efforts to ensure your MDF spend is truly promoting partner services along with vendor and supplier products. If this is off-balance, it will impact the end result as one partner feels more ‘hard done by’ than the other, resulting in a lesser effort from one party.

4. Check your ROI

Marketing and lead generation is all well and good, but your MDF will go to waste if you don’t convert consumer interest into sales. Before beginning your campaign, make sure you have a plan in place for nurturing and converting leads into sales. Be clear on the likely timeframe and sales cycle, and agree on a follow-up process to plug any leaks in the funnel.

By following these four steps, your MDF has the best possible chance of helping you and your partner in equal measure. Collaboration, communication and insight-gathering are key, so spend plenty of time upfront to strategise, plan and execute your co-marketing campaign.

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