The 10 Most Common Mistakes Manufacturers Make

October 1997
by The Industrial Performance Group

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and How to Avoid ThemEditor’s Note: I came across this article recently. Though it is written for the general industrial manufacturer, it contains much valuable information that also applies to publishers’ relationships with distributors so I decided to arrange to publish it in our newsletter.

If you are a manufacturer who has decided to take your products to market through independent distributors, you are facing a host of unique sales, marketing, and management challenges every day. And how well you manage your relationship with your distributors will go a long way in determining your overall sales effectiveness.

As a company that specializes in helping manufacturers improve their distributor sales, the Industrial Performance Group has over the years identified some common mistakes that manufacturers often make in doing business with the distributors that represent their product line.

The following is our Top 10 list of pitfalls to watch out for.1. Viewing your distributor as your customer.

You may send your invoices to them, and it may be their checks that you deposit in your bank account, but that doesn’t make your distributor your customer. The real customer is the person or organization that has a need which is best met by your product. Without them, neither you nor your distributors would be in business.

Therefore you need to view your distributors not as your customers, but as your “channel partners” and structure the relationships you maintain with them in…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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