Partner Training Success for VanillaIP Marketing Team
VanillaIP deliver training courses for Cloud Comms marketing know-how
Developing an exceptional telecoms product is only the first step in making a real impact on today’s market. Companies that truly want to thrive in this competitive space need more than just a great USP. After all, what good is an amazing service or solution if nobody knows about it?
The team at VanillaIP – a leading provider of white label cloud communications solutions for BroadSoft – has developed a new training strategy for their partners. VanillaIP believes that their channel partners should have more than just the support of the intuitive Uboss platform, to help them win deals. The right marketing and sales strategies can make a huge difference too!
Marketing Manager of VanillaIP Charlotte Aguirre and Marketing Assistant Amy Earl, told us all about the success of their recently enhanced marketing training strategy.
What Have You Accomplished This Year?
According to Amy and Charlotte, January 2019 has been the busiest and most auspicious start to the year that the company has had in some time. “We’ve been focusing a lot on our partners, and we’ve noticed that they need help marketing and promoting their products. The good news is that there are so many tools out there to use, from social media to SEO. Of course, a lot of people need help making the most of these solutions.”
At the end of 2018, the VanillaIP marketing team decided to trial a new marketing training course. “It was well received, so we decided to implement this training every quarter. We’ll also be doing a lot more partner events this year, for both marketing and sales.”
Aguirre and Earl noted that it’s crucial for them to make sure that they’re keeping their partner interests at the top of their agenda. It’s not just about making sure that partners have the right product anymore but ensuring that they can sell that product too.
Do You Focus Mostly on Digital Marketing?
For VanillaIP, the more training that their partners have – the better. Both online and offline marketing can be effective in the communications space, and VanillaIP’s marketing team are happy to reach out and find sources of specialist insights when necessary too. “Last year we had an expert come in and talk about the best ways to use social media. Since then, we’ve seen a huge boost in our presence, and we can teach those techniques to our partners.”
Aside from digital solutions, VanillaIP’s training programs also look at press releases, which can be print or digital, and exhibitions.
“Exhibitions are a big thing for our partners, and it’s important for them to make sure that they stand out. Sometimes, this just means asking the right questions and presenting yourself properly during an event”
Amy and Charlotte also addressed the importance of people showing the “personality” behind their companies too. “People buy from people, so it’s crucial to develop your presence with that in mind.”
Overall, VanillaIP ran three partner events during January, and they achieved a 100% attendance rate for all of them. “We’re proud of this. I think for us, the success comes down from great preparation, a clear agenda, and some excellent speakers too.”
How Are You Transforming Partners into Marketers?
Ultimately, the marketing training sessions that are now available from VanillaIP are there to empower partners. Aguirre and Earl told me that they believe technology moves so quickly today, and it’s crucial for them to keep their community up to date. “One thing we’ve noticed is that people are out there telling partners that they need to do certain things like having a social media presence, but not why it’s needed. People need to understand why certain strategies are so crucial, and how they can make the most of them.”
Because the market is changing at such a rapid pace, VanillaIP believes that it’s crucial to offer regular training. “We’re sticking to a quarterly pattern of training now because of the state of the industry. Products and techniques are always changing. What’s more, there’s so much to talk about in marketing, from PPC to SEO and social media. We sent out forms recently to find out what people want to learn about next, and that’s where our next training will come from.”
“Our marketing training not only highlights ways our partners can increase their brand awareness but it also gives them the tools to create sales opportunities particularly via social media. We believe that the marketing team in any business plays a strong role in creating sales opportunities and we are focused on helping our partners understand how this can be achieved within our training programme.”
One of the great things about the training sessions for Amy and Charlotte is how much they offer beyond a primary education. The team sees a variety of partners and resellers from different industries and backgrounds. “CEOs can provide insights to interns, and interns can provide out-of-the-box ideas. Everyone learns from each other. The VanillaIP training sessions are more than just a way to expand your skills, they’re also a fantastic opportunity to network and connect with people.”
Transforming the Telecoms Marketing Space
The new marketing training solutions from VanillaIP could be a significant differentiator for the company. In the past, telecom brands and partners have struggled a lot with their marketing efforts. It was easy to assume that all you need is product training to sell a solution. However, without the right marketing, it’s impossible to thrive in today’s marketplace.
“Everyone is responsible for a little bit of marketing in the business. We believe that everyone in our team should have a LinkedIn profile for instance so that there’s a cohesive presence for the organisation online”
According to Aguirre and Earl, there are a lot of people in any company that contribute to making the business work. The pair told me that the opinions of the salespeople and interns are just as valuable as the thoughts of the CEO.
“We worked hard to prepare everything in December, and it’s paid off with some great results. Going ahead, we’re going to continue delivering these great training solutions, and make sure that we get plenty of training ourselves. If we continue to practice what we preach, then we can make sure that we’re delivering the best education to our partners.”