Any novelist or screenwriter worth their salt knows that every good story has an arc and a structure to engage the audience. Ever wonder why you can sometimes guess what happens next? It’s because the writer follows a formula. A formula that’s become so familiar, that it’s expected by the reader. To vary from the formula is to lose the audience.
As readers, we’ve been trained to look for and expect certain things from our stories. As it turns out, as consumers of B2B channel marketing communications, we’ve been trained in the same way. And the content that gets the attention of solution providers must follow the formula.
To capture and engage the channel audience your story must focus on profit and the benefit to the solution provider from being your partner. The right channel story includes;
- A reason to do business with you expressed in $$$ and/or competitive advantage
- Additional services or opportunities the solution provider can capture with your product/service
- The business value proposition of a partnership
If your story misses these points – then it’s a bad read. And you’ll end up in the stack of unread books on the nightstand. Sure there are thought leadership pieces and yes you still have to deliver product collateral but even a category building white paper should address the basics of “what’s in it for me” for the channel partner.
And yes, your product matters, but not nearly as much as you think. As writers, we are constantly reminded to “show don’t tell”. As channel professionals we must challenge ourselves to “show” channel partners the benefits of partnership and “tell” them about our products less.