No Silver Bullets for Channel Management in 2015?

Year after year there always seems to be some buzz about the Next Big Thing (NBT) in the channel that will be the silver bullet for engaging partners and keeping top of mind. Content syndication, social media strategy and most recently mobile applications all came with great buzz and promise and every year we had a focus on how we were going to leverage the NBT.

As we hit the ground running in 2015 I’m not hearing any frenzied talk about the new silver bullet that’s going to be the game changer for the channel. And I’m glad about that. Quite frankly in the last five years the “next big thing” mentality is becoming reminiscent of fad diets and 6-minute abs workouts.

No Silver Bullets?

Instead of hunting for silver bullets, we should get back to channel management basics and see about improving our aim.

As time has gone by I’ve begun to notice that the cycle time of the NBT is getting shorter and shorter. For example, social media strategy in channel management seemed to have a good three year run before we realized partners were not engaging in our facebook pages nor reading our hourly tweets. At the beginning of 2014, everyone was clamoring about mobile apps but by year end most people had scrapped it after realizing channel partners don’t want 80 mobile apps to access their 80 vendors but would rather use the mobile browser.

Could 2015 be the year where we simply focus on real relationships and what works, and stop looking for silver bullets? I know silver bullets are sexy and more exciting than the lead ones. But the lead ones work very effectively and produce predictable results.

Maybe in 2015 we can focus on optimizing and executing well on the systems and programs that we already know will do the job. Instead of hunting for silver bullets, we should get back to basics and see about improving our aim.

Anyone else not hearing anything about the next next thing?