True or False? Incentive Travel Improves Channel Performance.
Answer: True. Incentive travel helps organizations achieve targeted business performance goals, but also represents a sound approach towards establishing and building strong relationships in your independent distributor channel.
Recently, one of our clients asked us to help provide further performance insights into their channel-based incentive-travel programme.
For several years, this organization has run an incentive programme for its dealer network. While it understood the sales volume created by the dealers that earned the trip, our client also wanted to understand other ways in which the programme created value.
Essentially, we wanted to answer the question, how has this long-running, annual programme provided value from the participants’ viewpoint?
Here’s what we found…
Participants firmly perceive the incentive-travel programme as a strong and effective influencer in helping the organization drive performance through the dealer channel.
A common participant response was, “the opportunity to earn the incentive-travel award greatly encouraged me to increase my performance efforts.”
As for whether the programme was creating brand loyalty and advocacy, our findings were best summarized with another participant statement: “The programme creates loyalty to the company, showing myself and other dealers just how much the organization cares and wants to help us.”
By continuing to establish and nurture dealer relationships through an incentive-travel strategy, our client also created and experienced added, long-term value that went beyond short-term measurements.
Programme participant comments such as, “I think the best part (as always) is networking with other distributors” and “[the award programme is] a great way to build a long-term bond with other distributors” echoed throughout our findings.
To the dealer, relationship building is viewed as a high-value opportunity.
With other channel representatives on the programme, participants are continually afforded a setting where they can establish and build relationships with one another.
This creates substantial, long-term value, as participants are able to further exchange ideas and insights on best practices, market shifts, challenges and business opportunities.
If you have distributors, sales networks or other channel partners, where are they fitting into the incentive-travel mix?