I recently spotted what I considered an odd hashtag on LinkedIn — #savethechannel
The channel is an interestingly overloaded phrase. It’s used to refer to the indirect sales path for technology, which takes technology and the resulting services delivered not from the vendor themselves through sellers to those end customers. There’s a lot of pieces in that “channel” – the vendors, the distributors, and the services companies, and even within three. There’s the channel chief – a vendor employee – and the channel team, which are sales or marketing staff who deal with partners… who are also the channel.
Let’s dive into the different channels, why the confusion matters, and why ecosystems are the future.