8 Ways Brandwise Helps Suppliers Build Strong Relationships with Sales Reps
When considering how Suppliers can work successfully with Sales Reps, discussions often focus around four major tenets or themes:
Have product that sells.
Maintain a high fill rate.
Pay your commissions on time.
Be a great company to work with!
While Retailers consider many factors in purchasing - aesthetics, quality, price, trends, etc., there is much more involved in building successful relationships with Sales Reps. If your product and your competitor’s product are comparable, what gets your line presented? What gets it “out of the bag”? While many companies have great product, the question is, are you, as a Supplier, great to work with?
While certain Brandwise tools can help guide you, in many ways, with numbers one through three above, this post will be looking at how to help you with #4. Being a great company to work with comes through planning, communication, engagement, and efficiency. We’ve identified the core qualities and strategies that a Supplier can build to be the brand that Sales Reps want to sell and the Brandwise tools that can help make this possible.
8 ways that Brandwise Helps Suppliers Build Strong Relationships with Sales Reps:
1. Update digital content on a timely basis
Content is vital. In today’s world immediate access to information is expected. Outdated, inaccurate, or incomplete content decreases confidence. What does a product look like? What are its features? How much does it cost? Is it a top seller? Is it on special? Is it in stock? If not, when can I get it? Answers need to be accurate and accessible.
Sales Reps need easy access to quality content, specifically catalogs, product images & detailed product descriptions in near real time. This is critical as remote selling increases in volume and frequency. Brandwise provides free, intuitive tools to manage digital content through our Brandwise Content Management tool. Sales Reps benefit from the interactive nature of engaging their customers using hotspotted digital catalogs both online (Reach) and offline (Play). These digital assets create a quick and effective selling tool at no additional cost.
2. Reporting and Analytics
Providing data for reporting and analytics allows Sales Reps to effectively identify and manage opportunities. To accomplish this Brandwise offers Supplier Vision. By engaging Sales Managers and Sales Reps with relevant actionable data you help them reach their full sales potential. Here are a few of the many tools involved:
Detailed Sales Analytics - evaluating data with salespeople is an active form of communication leading to meaningful dialogue.
Sales Capsule - a summary report of customer-specific tactical account data as a tool for Sales Managers to work with Sales Reps and for Sales Reps to use on sales calls.
Account Alerts - Leverage powerful data queries to highlight relevant, actionable data for your Sales Reps.
Product Trends - Visibility into product-specific data by Retailer and season to help Sales Reps identify opportunities and manage product placement.
Sales Route Optimization – Vision 360 integrates sales data with Google Maps allowing Sales Reps to see retailer performance within their territories.
Sales Enablement – Detailed analytics allowing Sales Reps to prepare for appointments by examining buying history and relevant product suggestions.
3. Inventory Status
A key to success with Sales Reps is to carefully consider their time. An order that can’t be filled wastes time and diminishes your Sales Rep’s confidence in your line. Communicating the current and future availability of stock enables Sales Reps to match customer expectations, increase fill rates, and add replacement SKUs.
To communicate this vital data to Sales Reps, Suppliers are now able to easily update Quantity on Hand and Availability Date information within the new Brandwise Transit. While many Suppliers provide only current stock levels, this can lead to confusion between out-of-stock and discontinued. The best practice is to provide your Sales Reps with an accurate glimpse into the future, empowering them to know if product is a) currently available, b) may become available soon, or c) perhaps never. Give your Sales Reps the tools to guide their Buyers by changing a ship date or replacing a product.
Clear communication with Sales Reps regarding future availability easily resolves the concern that an entire order might be delayed. Play assists by providing visibility to order quantity, dollars and percentage of product that will ship on any given date. While you may be hesitant to share inventory levels for fear of losing the order, not providing it creates far more long-term damage to your relationships with Retailers and Sales Reps.
4. Hybrid Commerce – Digital & Analog
Today’s market demands a combined digital and analog approach to sales. Brandwise’s hybrid solutions take advantage of the efficiency, speed, and ease of digital tools and the knowledge, experience, and relationships that salespeople can deliver. Statistics show that this combination results in far better outcomes when compared with digital-only solutions. Reach fosters interactions and collaboration between Retailers and Sales Reps including the ability to build orders together in real time. This turnkey solution includes territory rules maintaining the integrity of the Sales Rep Model.
Reach 2.0, launching later this month, offers Suppliers a platform to feature their products in a beautiful gallery view with rich lifestyle images. Products shine with a new image-led buying experience across all devices including smartphones, tablets, computers, and even smart TVs! Reach 2.0 is accessed by customers via their Brandwise Passport and populated with product data uploaded by Suppliers using Transit. Built on a powerful marketing platform, Kentico, Reach 2.0 delivers all the functionality of a modern B2B marketplace including order history, analytics, and extensive marketing tools.
Give your Sales Reps the tools to sell on-line as effectively as they do in person!
5. Enable Sales Reps to Offer Incentives and Promotions
With access to incentives, Sales Reps can plan sales calls accordingly. Incentives include order total discounts, discounted or free freight, extended terms for customers, etc. Through the Supplier Dashboard on Play for iPad this information is easily shared with your Sales Reps providing visibility into active programs and promotions!
6. Easy Order Delivery from your Sales Reps!
Receiving orders via email is inefficient, unsecure, and requires follow up by Sales Reps. Brandwise Stream products efficiently and securely deliver orders to Suppliers electronically. Play, Reach and Stream provide options for end-to-end PCI Compliant Credit Card Tokenization protecting all parties from Credit Card fraud.
7. Automated Invoice Entry
InvoiceXchange allows Agencies to efficiently import invoices and commission statements from Suppliers directly into their Reward application. This valuable information is accessible by Sales Reps in Vision for iPad. The Brandwise Support team creates templates, including line item detail, to accept your specific invoice file layout to share with all your Agencies.
8. Good Will
Sales Reps are most effective when their Suppliers support their work, have the highest fill rates, generate reorders, help them to work efficiently and provide easy access to what is needed to make the sale. This is the clear path to creating strong relationships, building good will and being a company that’s great to work with! By leveraging Brandwise’s full studio of products, your Sales Reps will know that you are putting your resources to work... for them.
Join us to learn more! We’ll be discussing all of this, and much more on a webinar this Friday, April 3rd at 11am MT. Register Here.
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