New feature automatically serves up and sends out vendor content, including partner video intros and outros
Vendors and channel partners that are leveraging start-up Spark Your Channel’s marketing and lead-generation platform now can take advantage of an automation feature that will make it easier and faster to personalize and share vendor content.
The Lowdown: The newly developed Automated Recommender Engine, announced this week, will enhance how sales and marketing teams with channel companies interact with their vendors.
The Details: The new feature enables partners to send out more personalized content over the various communications channels they use to drive demand. The Automated Recommender Engine automatically serves up the next relevant piece of vendor content that features the partner’s own personalized video intros and outros. The content, which is delivered at the cadence preferred by the partner, is then instantly shared through whatever means is used by the partner. That can include their own marketing automation tools, e-mail, social networking channels, or text.
The automation tool is designed as an easier way for partners that already are squeezed for time to personalize the vendor content they’re sending out. Creating the intros and outros requires about 30 minutes of a partner’s time. After that, the tool automatically finds the content, personalizes it, and sends it out.
The Impact: Spark’s cloud-based platform comes at a time when vendors are looking to invest more in through-channel marketing automation (TCMA). According to The 2112 Group, half of vendors earlier this year said they were increasing their through-partner marketing spending this year, an intent that was expressed before the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the globe, making video even more important, according to Heather Margolis, the Spark founder who also launched Channel Maven Consulting in 2009. Lead-generation software maker OptinMonster said marketers that use video content get 66% more qualified leads every year.
Background: Spark offers its platform to vendors, which then make it available to partners’ sales and marketing groups. It enables solution providers to quickly personalize such content as videos, webinars, e-books, podcasts, and infographics. Vendors can track the marketing activities without partners having to give up customer contact lists.
The Buzz: “After talking to partners about what they want, our goal has always been to make Spark Your Channel more about the personalized content partners can use wherever they want, including marketing automation, CRMs, social posts, sales sequences, and individual e-mails,” Margolis said. “Since launching in February, all of our worlds have changed, making video more important than ever. For the partners that don’t have marketing or the bandwidth to customize an entire campaign or to create a video each and every time they send a message, we’re using their video intro and outro on all relevant content. Basically with 30 minutes of their time and Spark’s unique automation capabilities, they can personalize hundreds or even thousands of pieces of content.”
“We were already thrilled with the innovation around through-channel demand generation Spark was providing our partners,” said David Portnowitz, CMO at Star2Star. “Now, with the release of Automated Recommender Engine, our partners don’t even have to think about what to do next. It simply gets served to them with their own personalized video intro and outro synched. This is going to completely innovate the way partners engage with their prospects and customers.”
“This is going to completely change the way we engage our prospects,” said John Goodson, founder of Merito, an IT solution provider. “Spark’s automation feature enables us to send prospects and customers a cadence of ideal content and outreach without a distraction from our day-to-day. Clients get relevant content, which keeps our pipeline active and it took us less than three minutes to personalize it.”
“The new Automated Recommender Engine in Spark Your Channel’s through-channel marketing platform is a game-changer,” said Lawrence M. Walsh, CEO and chief analyst of The 2112 Group, a channel consultancy focused on go-to-market strategies and research and the parent company of Channelnomics. “Personalization is hugely important to the user experience. Providing this automated way of ensuring partners have access to the most relevant materials increases the potential for generating better, revenue-generating outcomes.”