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Channel Partners need social media training. Fallacy!

In part one of this blog series, we established that channel partners DO do social media.  So now let’s talk about all the fabulous and unique social media training events put in place by vendors.

The first question is: Who needs the training? The partners, really? Or the vendors? Frankly, it is not such a tough call.

Most channel partners have some social media presence already; they are active and they know their local markets and networks. Can ‘global’ social media training sessions or webinars really benefit partners? Or is relevant and localised content the real Holy Grail?

Is it condescending to tell channel partners that social media is all about listening? Or to show them how to grow their Facebook network? Or how to tweet? What they really need AND want is tangible support with publishing new and valuable content.

Increasing value-add and improving reach is the main reason channel partners use social media today. It’s not just about leads and sales but about generating interest. It’s not about customer service or listening; they have telephones and hotlines for that.

The vast majority of channel partners are small and localised, so global social media training is pretty much wasting everyone’s time. True, basic guidance on how to blog, tweet or whatever, along with the importance of concise and relevant messaging has a place, for some partners, but again this is not rocket science and not worth partners spending hours on training webinars!

The truth of the matter is that social media involves time and good content, which channel partners have neither of!

But you can fix that.  Spend less time trying to train your channel partners in the obvious, and more time giving them the ammunition – i.e. valuable content – to make a real difference. Using social media content syndication, you can leverage the trust that exists between your channel partners and their contacts… You can turn your rich marketing content into social media leads for your channel partners.

By Olivier Choron, CEO and Founder, purechannelapps.

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