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Channel Learning: For the Love of Learning, and Money

Love of Channel Learning

I love channel learning.  It just makes sense and is completely and beautifully tied to the bottom line.  Pure unadulterated learning for the sake of money.  Two of my favorite things learning and money are.

You are a company, you’re growing and you have a sales force.  You assess them, hire them, train them, let them ramp up and hope they can sell.  If you are right, you have a producing salesperson and your company takes an incremental step forward.

If you are wrong, it takes six to nine months to find out and $100,000 for the effort of recruiting, hiring, salary and benefits – if you are lucky.  Multiply that by 1000 or 2000 sales people and you have a lot riding on each hire.

If you are really growing, you inevitably outpace your ability to hire and develop and need a channel of partners.

What is Channel Learning?

An organization’s channel consists of resellers, partners, value added resellers, franchises and distributors.  The channel acts in your stead. The channel sells your product, services your product, adds additional services to support your product with the end client.    A corporation, no matter how large, can’t be everywhere at the same time.  You can’t penetrate into new markets easily and cost effectively without a channel.  A channel allows you to put local experts on the street with your products and services without hiring them all, everywhere, in every language.

A channel may be captured or uncaptured.  Captured implies that they only resell your products and services.  Uncaptured channels can sell products and services from a variety of companies.  Think life insurance for example.  You can go directly to Prudential and buy insurance.  Or you can go to Select Quote who represents the top life insurance companies and have them recommend a company and product for you.  Either way, organizations need to educate their channel continually and provide relevant tools and information to help them sell or they won’t.

Let’s say a  major insurance provider like Prudential has a partner portal where their uncaptured agents like Select Quote can access Prudential training, updates, best  practices and collaboration.   As new products are released, content is created and disseminated to ensure Select Quote agents are always up to speed and certified.

Imagine the other three insurance companies that Select Quote represents just send a packet of colorful paper to channel insurance agents every now and then.  What product do you think Select Quote will sell when they are in the hot seat in front of a potential client?  I was in sales many years and you always sell what you know best.  Competition is always stiff and selling is always tough.

Business Reasons for Channel Learning

Some common business reasons for channel LMS and e-Learning initiatives are:

  • Increase sales and revenue
  • Decrease cost of direct employee hiring
  • Decrease time to market with new products
  • Penetrate into new geographic markets or new markets in general
  • Increase the consistency of your message
  • Increase the ability for partners to cross sell and resell
  • Increase in “mind share” of the non captured channel
  • Increase end customer satisfaction
  • Reduce technical support calls
  • Increase brand loyalty
  • Increase channel quality and loyalty

Case Study Examples of Channel Learning

Examples of Channel Learning in the News

Vendors Specializing in Channel Learning

Now Available:  LMS Almanac:  Corporate Edition

It’s here folks and it is good.  The LMS Almanac:  Corporate Edition 2016 will help LMS buyers cut through all the fluff in the industry and get a true view of what is going on.   Deep detail and statistics about the corporate LMS market trends, 75 vendor profiles, 100+ comparison graphics and charts, , learning, tech dictionary and more.   If you are looking for an LMS for your employees, channel partners or customers, this report is vital to helping you quickly qualify vendors and find the best for you.

Recorded Webinar — State of the 2016 LMS Market

Have you struggled to understand the 2016 LMS market and the hundreds of LMS options?  You are not alone.  LMS buyers and sellers globally are lost.  In the last two years, I reviewed 111 LMS vendors (and counting) after spending 13 years selling high-end LMSs.  Let me, John Leh, sort it all out for you.  With the evolution of cloud LMS providers, the market has shifted from behemoth generalists to nimble specialists.  Gone are the two oceans of academic and corporate LMSs, replaced by 675+ ponds of specialization.  There are LMSs for every industry, business need, organizational size and budget.

Free Consultation with John Leh?

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John Leh
About John Leh (135 Articles)
John Leh is CEO and Lead Analyst at Talented Learning, LLC. Named one of the Top 20 Global Elearning Movers and Shakers of 2017, John is a fiercely independent LMS selection consultant and blogger who helps organizations develop and implement technology strategies – primarily for the extended enterprise. John's advice is based on 20 years of industry experience, having served as a trusted LMS selection and sales adviser to more than 100 learning organizations with a total technology spend of more than $65 million. He helps organizations define their business case, identify requirements, short-list vendors, write and manage RFPs and negotiate a great deal. You can connect with John on Twitter at @JohnLeh or on LinkedIn.

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  1. LMS Reviews: Docebo LMS | Talented Learning
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