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June 12, 2007 | Demand Generation | WineDirect Admin

What to Look for in a Biz Dev Partner

Summer always brings wineries a multitude of visitors, making it no problem getting people to visit the tasting room. And of course, by adding these happy vacationers to your online database you can market to them again after they’ve returned home. But, what about your online store? Usually the chaotic ebb and flow of the tasting room leaves the winery website on the back burner. There is an easy way to continue to build your online business throughout the summer (and all year around), without compromising your time. Find affiliates that are willing to send you business, in return for a portion of the sales they help you generate. These third party businesses (business development partners) are out there just waiting to join with a winery like you. The only challenge – making sure they’re the right fit!

Do they bring you new customers?
One of the most valuable services that a new affiliate can bring to you is a new customer. This can be collected in a number of ways. Some partners will direct customers through their site and onto yours to purchase wine. This is usually in return for a fee for both a new customer and a new sale. Other partners are equally valuable, but may only be able to pass you customer information without the sale. This requires your follow-up to verify contact information so that you can market to them again in the future.

Do they bring you increased revenue?
Your number one priority is your bottom line. Any business development partner should be evaluated on the amount of revenue they can bring your business. If they’re not making you money outright or via new customers – what’s in it for you? Be sure to evaluate their sustainability over time. Beware of affiliates who have not thought out their business model beyond the first 90 days.

What value-added services do they provide?
Does your new partner provide you benefits other than customer information or increased revenue? If the answer is yes, and you receive these benefits in addition to one or both of the above, there is a good chance this can be a very fruitful partnership. If they are providing value-added services instead of revenue or customers, you need to weigh the cost of the partnership against your return on investment.

Do they increase your brand exposure?
For a relatively new wine brand, or maybe just relatively new to the online world, increasing your brand exposure will be key. Getting your name and your message out to the masses is going to be essential in increasing the amount of traffic to your website.

Stay in tune with the sales channel over the busy summer months by allowing the Internet to work for you. Build relationships that will last and can continue to grow and benefit both parties. There are many budding entrepreneurs out there who are affiliates just waiting to be discovered.

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