Manufacturers and distributors rely on one another to sustain their independent operations. Without distributors, manufacturers would have no way of getting products into their customers’ hands. Without manufacturers, distributors would have nothing to sell. Given the nature of this dynamic, collaboration is key. In order to develop a relationship with your distributors that is mutually beneficial, you must focus on improving manufacturer-distributor communication! Floro Business Strategies has compiled a few tips:
Biweekly or monthly check-ins
Just like with any other business relationship, holding regular meetings is an effective way to ensure you and your distributors are on the same page. Whether you meet in person or via Zoom, check in with your distributors once or twice a month. During this time, you can discuss day-to-day operations and short/long-term plans.
Biweekly or monthly check-ins are important in understanding your distributors’ needs and challenges. You and your distributors all wish to provide exceptional customer service and generate revenue — but you cannot achieve this without teamwork. Meeting with your distributors will allow you to discuss and resolve any issues that will prevent both parties from reaching their shared goals.
It’s likely your partnership is not exclusive — you may work with several distributors, while your distributors work with several other manufacturers. With so many parties involved, it can be difficult to manage day-to-day communications. Therefore, automated and cloud-based collaboration software is essential in managing all your partnerships.
Programs like Slack, Asana, Workplace, and Google Drive allow collaborators shared access to view and edit important information, data, and documents — all in one place. Those with admin access can create “teams” and manage who has access to what, making it simple to organize/separate communications between each of your distributors.
Collaborative CRM software, like Microsoft Dynamics 365, is a great option for automating and managing email and phone communications. Collaborative CRM software connects manufacturers and distributors, creating one central system where all parties have access to the same email and phone records.
At Floro Business Strategies, we believe that in order to provide exceptional customer service and generate revenue, you must focus on improving manufacturer-distributor communication. With decades of experience in Distribution Channel Development, we’re ready to help you achieve this! Interested in learning more? Contact us today!