Market Development Funds (MDF Funds)

The Best Way To Use Market Development Funds : Technology

  • On : October 19, 2020

It’s coming to the pointy end of 2020, and many technology companies haven’t taken full advantage of Market Development Funds (MDF Funds) made available by large multinational technology company vendors.

The most successful channel partners always use their Market Development Funds (MDF Funds) wisely to generate leads and accelerate their business growth.

Vendors have become more sophisticated in who they choose to service their channel partners by ensuring that suppliers such as marketing companies and marketing technologies are not only working in the best interest of their channel partner, but they actually achieve results.

Robotic Marketer is this years’ must use MDF Fund allotment. It is a technology platform that combines marketing strategy consulting with the development of a strategic marketing plan.

It helps companies set goals, plan, develop, deploy and track their digital marketing strategy, keeping the channel partner and any third-party providers on track.

Why use MDF Funds

They are made available to you so that you can reinvest in marketing your company, improve sales processes and enter new markets. By using MDF Funds you will be able to partner with experts in the field of sales and marketing who are typically experienced in your technology solution or service, to build out your sales pipeline and communicate most effectively to achieve ultimately more sales.

Why Vendors provide MDF Funds

Vendors use channel partners to expand their reach. Many go direct but know their true potential is in the channel and to ensure that it is working most effectively, generating sales, the channel often needs guidance.

By carefully evaluating suppliers to channel partners, and where possible providing MDF Funds to help with marketing and sales campaigns, the Vendor is investing in the success of the channel.

Vendors who don’t invest in MDF Funds for their high growth channel partners are setting themselves up to be disrupted or to have their channel partners pouched.

Vendors also want access to the relationships, connections, and to foster loyalty that channel partners have developed in a regional or vertical furthering their sales and marketing reach.

Each Vendor has a different MDF Criteria

How MDF Funds are allocated is often down to the sales and marketing performance of a channel partner. What business does the channel partner bring to the business? How much revenue does the channel partner account for? Is the channel partner in a market where the Vendor is not a market leader? Is the Vendor selling a solution that is new to the product suite?

Ultimately what the Vendor is looking for:

  • Increased revenue: Having a strategic plan in place that you can present or share with your Vendor Partner Manager is important to securing MDF Funds for your business. Many Vendors have criteria around how much revenue a channel partner needs to achieve to receive MDF Funds.
  • Commitment to growth: Vendors are more likely to bring channel partners into various funded programs or provide specific MDF Funds for companies that are not only committed to growth but are taking actions to achieve goals.
  • Committed to Vendors solutions: Vendors are looking for true partners and often provide 50% of the funding for sales and marketing initiatives. If you are marketing their solutions and actively seeking new deals, the chances are that they too will come to the party.
  • Alternatives to events: COVID has killed the events industry so Vendors are looking for alternative marketing strategies. Make sure you have one.

Leveraging MDF Funds is easy if you know how to. Many channel partnership programs are choosing Robotic Marketer to help partners develop marketing strategies aligned with business goals.

If the channel partner has the right plan in place, they are ¾ of the way there.

Women in Technology

How Being A Woman In Technology Smashed My Confidence

  • On : October 13, 2020

It was 25 years ago, almost to the day, that I started as a young woman in the technology industry.

At the time, I was an ambitious, vibrant, enthusiastic technology marketing specialist keen to make my mark on the world. Everyone was so inviting back then and always ensured that I had the support needed to learn as much as possible about the industry and build life-long networks.

I was safely in a box. I was woman in the technology industry that did marketing and public relations.

Fast track to today, it’s a very different story.

I stepped outside my lane, used the knowledge I had gained over the years and my creative brain to do something that I thought was possible.

And it was. 

Robotic Marketer – The Big Idea

I saw an opportunity to use the knowledge and skills that I had gained over two decades in the industry to come up with a solution that was AI-powered, fully utilizing the machine learning that was available through thousands of marketing strategies to automate a manual and ineffective process of developing a marketing strategy.

Like any smart entrepreneur, I tested the concept by having the Queensland University of Technology develop a prototype. This was an incredible process that allowed us to prove the concept.

From there, I employed a bunch of technology professionals including python operators, data scientists, machine learning experts – to work as a team to redevelop the prototype as a smarter, faster and more effective software.

My role was clear, I was the solutions architect. I wrote every single line for the data entry of company information and explained in detail exactly what I needed this knowledge to do. Remember, I have been in the technology industry for a long time and I knew the basics of what various technologies do. I used this knowledge and my skills in marketing to feed my team the information needed for them to build code.

When the first marketing strategy popped up in my inbox, I was so pleased with myself. In fact, I would say that it was the first time in my life that I felt like I truly accomplished something.

I had an idea and I followed it through.

Global Interest

As I traveled the world, I found sophisticated global companies like SAP and Oracle to be incredible to deal with. They were excited by the technology and were keen to use it in their businesses especially for their Channel Partnership programs.

They not only liked what they saw, they were as passionate about the output and outcomes as I.

A great partnership was formed and we continued to build out global companies that use the technology in their businesses.

When I went to events, people were interested in the technology. But I have to say that I was shocked to see the faces of people when I said I owned the company and was the founder.

A Woman in Technology

Each and every time, the person on the other side asked if I had a company that was my partner or if there was a man who owned the company with me too. At first, it was water off a duck’s back, but after the tenth time, I became frustrated and a little disheartened.

I was constantly asked how I funded the business to which I would answer “my own money” that is until 12 months ago when I took on an investor who now owns a minority of the business. He’s the best!

The strangest situation once occurred at a venture capital event not too long ago. As a smart businessman and former NFL player, the natural assumption is often that it is his company. It is – that part is true, but as the “brain” behind the business in addition to being its founder, Robotic Marketer would not be here without me (and my team).

As we left the event that day, he mentioned that he noticed how they talked to him more, almost mocking my contribution to the conversation on artificial intelligence and trying to catch me out on my knowledge. They failed, and I took pride in that. But, it did leave me a little bruised.

From that moment on I became all too aware that it was hard for men and sometimes women to believe that I had built this phenomenal global company.

The highlights of getting a valuation for the company and winning deals became overshadowed by the fact that in the real world, people found it hard to believe that this company was built by a woman.

The real kicker was when I had an introductory call with a third party supplier to Government who was employed to evaluate companies for government grants.

Not only did he talk over me for the entire 43 minutes, but he was also condescending and plain rude.

After out meeting, he then sent me an email stating:

  • “You should join an incubator” – I have over 10 employees in the company and it’s running just fine – thank you!
  • “You should consider the R&D Grant” – I informed him in the few times that I had a chance to speak that I was already the recipient of the R&D Grant.
  • “You should work with a university to get endorsement for the technology” – As I mentioned to him in the first 5 minutes, not only had a prestigious University built the prototype, they had endorsed the fact that it is the first in the world and it would take years for another company to get to our stage in development.

The list went on.

I got off the phone and cried.

I was crushed. He hadn’t listened to anything I said and as he said during the conversation, he didn’t think we had a product. Let’s get this straight… not only have we got a product, but also a full sales pipeline of very interested customers.

I knew having a tech start-up would be hard, but I never thought that I would have to overcome the biggest hurdle of all and that is being a woman.

My glass is half full, but I have found that the constant rejection in various ways to be really hard to handle, mostly at the hands of men.

Women in fairness ask the same question as to whether I have a man as a partner, but they are more subtle in their approach. This is more often than not followed by, “Is this your family’s business?”

For 22 years in business, I have been the biggest supporter of men. I refuse to talk at International Women’s Day because we don’t have International Men’s Day, and I will use my voice over and over again to support men so that they are not sidelined.

I would go as far as to say only a handful of times have I been treated poorly because I am a woman – in my life until I started a technology company.

The Road Ahead

I won’t give up and if anything, I am determined to prove myself. But life is hard enough without having to fight for your seat at the table because of your gender. The world needs more women as leaders and they need to support women who are doing innovative things in areas that are world-leading.

This won’t stop until more people speak up and voices are heard. The road will be bumpy, but my plight to continue on this path with Robotic Marketer is one that I intend to finish, but along the way, I will bring women with me and I will make a point to ensure that other women entrepreneurs are not treated so poorly.

SAP MDF Approval

2021 Marketing Strategies Get MDF Approval

  • On : September 28, 2020

Atlanta, North America, 28 September 2020: Market Development Funds (MDF Funds) for leading technology company SAP has been allocated for small and mid-sized Channel Partners to develop marketing strategies around the globe.

With changing market conditions, buyer habits and competitor landscape, Channel Partners are needing to rethink their marketing strategies to align with business goals that may have been adapted due to COVID-19.

“With physical events out of the question, SAP Channel Partners are needing to look to other marketing tactics to form part of their marketing strategy. Pivoting to virtual events, content creation and website optimization is critical to transforming marketing activations to connect with customers and prospects,” said Mellissah Smith, Managing Director of Robotic Marketer.

“SAP is a proactive global company that focuses on ensuring that their Channel Partners have access to the very best technology, systems, process and marketing assets.

“Robotic Marketer is thrilled to be able to provide SAP Channel Partners with the marketing support needed to navigate the next 12 months.”

For more information, please ring Misty Dean, Media Manager on +1 404 626 8070.

About Robotic Marketer

Robotic Marketer is an international marketing strategy technology company that uses AI, machine learning and big data to automate the development of marketing strategies, marketing calendars and programs. With clients including SAP, Oracle, Mitel, Comcast, Origin and Tellus Holdings, Robotic Marketer works with a number of large global corporations as well as directly with small and mid-sized businesses around the world.