Channel partners are an extension of the ShoreTel organisation. That is why we have always strived to invest in their businesses and incentivise their successes. Eighteen months ago, we decided to take this further and set the beginning of the Accelerate Marketing Knowledge master classes.

We had the vision of inspiring our partners to create and execute joint marketing activities with ShoreTel, and this is exactly what we designed these classes to do.

At ShoreTel, we have always held the opinion that customer retention, growth and satisfaction stem from a thriving and successful partner ecosystem. To achieve this, we decided to initiate a series of events, which would educate channel marketing professionals with the very latest industry ideas, concepts and practises. As a first step, we hired marketing specialists Bowan Arrow to design one day sessions which would provoke discussions, debates and actions. We wanted these sessions to originate individual marketing plans, into which fulfilment ShoreTel would invest.

Each one of our channel partners brings specific expertise, whether it is vertical understanding, or horizontal technical expertise, to the customers that they serve. What we wanted to do with the Accelerate programme, was to grow their businesses by providing the tools and education needed for them differentiate and make themselves heard in the competitive, noisy market of unified communication solutions.

As of today, we have over 30 joint marketing campaigns agreed and underway in the UK channel as a direct result of the Accelerate Marketing Knowledge series; some backed with 100% funding from ShoreTel.

The next Accelerate Marketing event will be held in the autumn, when attending partners will report on their successful campaigns and share best practice with the community.  We also plan to reward the most proactive partner marketer with personal incentives, as well as recognise the businesses that have been commercial successful through joint initiatives with ShoreTel.

From the outset we viewed the Accelerate marketing Knowledge project as a long term investment that encouraged personal development, as well as commercial success. The feedback we gather from the sessions is overwhelmingly positive and the attendance numbers reflect how much value our partners get from this training.

Digital transformation has become a top initiative for business and IT leaders. In today’s business world, sustainable market leadership is no longer based solely on which company has the best products or even the best people. Instead, organizations that are agile and can quickly adapt to rapidly evolving market trends will become market leaders.

Tom Perry

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