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How to Support Building Materials Distributor Marketing

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For building materials manufacturers, distributors are an important part of the bedrock of the business ecosystem. 

Without them, your brand wouldn’t find as far and wide a reach as they do. Your products would never make their way into the shelves of local retailers and the hands of contractors. That said, you’re in a unique position to make what distributors do for your brand even more effective, and build stronger bonds with them in the process. 

By boosting your distributors’ marketing efforts, you’ll not only create goodwill with these essential channel partners — your brand will benefit greatly from the increased exposure. 

Here are 4 solid ways you can support your distributors’ marketing efforts, and start realizing the long-term gains that naturally happen as a result: 

1. Connect Them with Your Marketing Asset Management System

One of the best ways to help your distributors is to give them free, easy access to marketing materials. After all, you (perhaps in collaboration with a marketing agency partner) will create the most effective marketing collateral for your products. 

In a 2018 report by A Fluent Vision, 75% of channel partners ranked content provided by manufacturers and vendors as important. Your distributors likely recognize the value that a manufacturer’s content has in deepening the well with retailers, and they might just be waiting to receive it from you and use it. 

Your distributors will do an even better job if they can download persuasive content and marketing assets anytime, anywhere. Here’s where the power of a marketing asset management (MAM) system lies. 

One of the best solutions currently available for this is RevBase, a premium software solution now owned and operated by Bullseye Locations.

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RevBase lets you grant your distributors secure access to your sell sheets, digital brochures, product descriptions, instructional videos, and much more. You’ll be able to organize every kind of asset, including even print-on-demand materials, and select only the files you want your distributors to see. 

From there, you’ll have full visibility into downloads, enabling you to follow up with your distributors and track their efforts in using your materials. 

Using a MAM system like RevBase in this way is a pure win-win. By getting the right marketing materials into their hands, your distributors can more effectively sell your products and extend your brand’s reach. 

2. Capture Leads with a Distributor Locator

The next step in helping your distributors’ marketing efforts? Sending them leads directly. 

The best way to do that is through a dedicated distributor locator page on your website. 

Here’s how it works. A potential retail partner lands on your website. They want to find out where to purchase your products, and so they eventually make their way over to your distributor locator. 

From there, they navigate the built-in map and choose the nearest distributor, in addition to viewing inventory information or submitting inquiries. As soon as they submit an inquiry along with their contact info, that prospect becomes a valuable lead for the distributor.

Bullseye Locations can make this happen. Using Bullseye, you can create a well-oiled lead generation engine that sends new customers directly to your local distributors. You also take credit for these leads and hold your distributors accountable. They can then follow up with those leads and close more deals. 

All in all, a high-quality locator will simply help you move more product while feeding your distributors’ lead pipeline.

3. Create a Product Education and Training Program

The most effective distributor marketing happens when your distributors know as much as they can about your products. This is a prime opportunity to educate them through product education and training.

A lot of thought should go into that training, however. In an ATD survey of instructional design professionals, only 38% of respondents felt their learning programs were meeting learners’ needs. 

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With that in mind, how can you meet your distributors’ marketing needs through product education? By furnishing thorough, engaging, detailed content that shows — with fleshed-out descriptions of product features and benefits to back it up — why your brand deserves to be highlighted over the competition.

You can conduct training either in person or remotely with today’s video-conferencing tools. In either case, there should be a path to certification. If you give distributors who complete the training and demonstrate product knowledge a “Certified Partner” status, you’ll boost their credibility among dealers and retailers even more. 

Another way to provide product education: give your distributors direct access to key product information such as detailed descriptions, technical guides, how-to videos, and spec sheets. 

Again, the best way to achieve that is to use RevBase. You’ll be able to see exactly which content pieces are utilized the most by your distributors. This knowledge will help you optimize your product education content, as well as reinforce relationships with distributors and other channel partners, like never before.

4. Put a Feedback System in Place

As a building materials manufacturer, you can never learn too much from your distributors. That includes learning their point of view on the popularity and product-market fit of your merchandise.

After all, your distributors are the ones interacting with dealers day in and day out. They likely have their finger on the pulse of what’s driving large building material bulk orders, and why. 

How do you gather this intel? Implement a robust feedback system in which distributors can actively let you know how your product lines are faring in the wholesale marketplace. 

It’s worth paying someone to survey your distributors periodically, as often as every quarter (or even more frequently if order volumes justify it). Once you get the information back, use it to improve your product marketing, the products themselves, or both. 

According to McKinsey & Company, 38% of managers cite a lack of trust and communication as key reasons strategic business partnerships fail. You can buck this trend with your distributors by establishing a feedback loop and maintaining it through ongoing outreach and surveys.

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You’ll not only make your partners feel heard…you’ll get better products and better marketing collateral out to your distributors. When both kinds of assets perform well, it’s a win-win situation for everyone involved. 

Give Your Building Materials Distributors the Marketing Collateral and Leads They Need to Succeed

A healthy distributor network can be the bread and butter of your brand’s expansion as a building product manufacturer. Don’t neglect the opportunity you have to strengthen the relationship and refine this crucial marketing channel.

You can do so in a number of key ways, such as educating distributors on the items you make and asking for feedback. An immediate impact can be seen, however, when you use the right modern software tools.

RevBase is your premier MAM software solution for sharing the materials that will help distributors promote your product lines. Bullseye is the platform you’ll need to build robust distributor locators and drive leads directly to your partners for follow-up and nurturing.

Combine these two solutions, and you’ll continuously fuel a healthy, self-sustaining distributor marketing engine that gets your brand noticed. 

Ready to see how Bullseye and RevBase can help you take your distributors’ marketing efforts to the next level? Get in touch today to schedule a demo.

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