A staggering 78% of channel partners in the Agriculture industry in India are not engaged as per BI WORLDWIDE and KANTAR’s Channel Partner Engagement Research 2023

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The groundbreaking research analyses factors that help foster and sustain engagement and provides insights on how to build measurable and profitable brand-channel partner relationships.

NEW DELHI: BI WORLDWIDE, a global leader in loyalty and engagement solutions, conducted the first-of-its-kind research, in association with KANTAR, the world’s leading marketing data and analytics company, to analyze what inspires, engages, and motivates channel partners in India. The aim was to leverage insights from the research to create robust and reliable tools for brands to understand, measure, and strengthen their channel partner relationships.

BI WORLDWIDE and KANTAR unveiled this unique and in-depth research at a virtual launch, along with inspiring loyalty and engagement domain leaders, market research consultants, and industry stalwarts. The research focuses on channel partners’ perspectives to highlight key drivers of engagement, the impact of rewards, a research-based framework to measure engagement, and the new-age communication preferences of channel partners.

Speaking about the research, Mr. Siddharth Reddy, Managing Director, BI WORLDWIDE India stated, “BI WORLDWIDE India commissioned KANTAR to pioneer a first-ever, in-depth research in the loyalty marketing industry, conducted at this scale. The research brings focus to a holistic relationship between brands and channel partners. Together, we endeavored to identify the factors that affect channel partner engagement and developed a framework that enables brands to measure and optimize engagement.”

Likewise, Mr. Biswapriya Bhattacharjee, Director, B2B & Technology, Insights Division, KANTAR India stated, “The research is truly one-of-its-kind and delves deep into channel partners’ mindset to understand what inspires and motivates them to give their best. Brands can design results-oriented channel loyalty programs when informed by insights from methodical and scientific research. KANTAR is delighted to have partnered with BI WORLDWIDE India to bring together a plethora of such data-backed insights and perspectives on secrets to win over channel partners.”

Research Approach

Through in-depth interactions and scientific processes, the research analyzed the behavioral patterns of 700+ channel partners across six prominent industries in India – Agriculture, Pharmaceutical, Automotive, FMCG, Oil & Gas, and Building & Construction. Around 69% of these channel partners were distributors and retailers, while 31% were influencers, including skilled workers, such as electricians, plumbers, painters, mechanics, and daily wagers.

Commenting on the distinctive research, Mr. Sukesh Jain, CEO, of BI WORLDWIDE India stated, “We manage channel loyalty programs for some of the leading global and Indian multi-national trade brands and provide them with proven and results-oriented solutions. BI WORLDWIDE’s channel partner engagement research not only provides insights on strengthening brand-channel partner relationships but also helps clients and other brands measure engagement through a research-based model and solution framework. We believe in turning inspiration into real business results, and the outcomes of this in-depth research help cultivate meaningful, profitable, and lasting channel partner relationships, driving larger market share and in turn, consistent revenue growth for brands.

Key Research TakeawaysAgriculture Industry

The research analyzed behavioral patterns of 105 channel partners from the Agriculture industry in India, out of a total sample size of 700+ channel partners. It uncovers key statistics and insights that Agriculture brands should consider when designing and implementing their channel loyalty and engagement programs to drive better ROI:

  • A staggering 78% of channel partners in the Agriculture industry are not engaged. Out of this, 69% of the channel partners are ‘Trapped’, 2% are ‘Vulnerable’ and 7% are ‘Unattached’.
  • Operational Excellence, Rewards & Incentives, and Learning are the top drivers of engagement for the Agriculture industry. The other influential drivers are Recognition, Affinity towards the Brand, Communication, Well-being, and Events. However, focusing holistically on all 8 drivers will help Agriculture brands foster strong and profitable channel partner relationships.
  • Agriculture brands can maximize channel partner engagement using BI WORLDWIDE and KANTAR’s jointly developed, IBC (Invest, Build, and Consider) solution framework.
  • 50% of channel partners in the Agriculture industry prefer receiving business communication through app-based messaging platforms, such as WhatsApp and 46% use social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, etc.

Overall Research Findings

  • A whopping 78% of channel partners in India are not engaged.
  • Brands can measure the strength of channel partner engagement, leveraging BI WORLDWIDE’s unique model, developed in consultation with KANTAR, called the Affection Matrix.
  • 68% of channel partners are extremely satisfied with travel-based rewards, followed closely by luxury rewards at 66%, and business infrastructure-related rewards at 64%.
  • A brand’s best bet is to invest in a strategic mix of rewards that covers the entire efficacy scale – transactional, functional, and aspirational – to amplify channel partners’ loyalty.
  • Voice, Messengers, and Apps are the mediums to consider while developing channel partners’ communication strategies.

The research deep dives into channel partners’ expectations and equips brands with models to optimize their channel loyalty programs in a complex and layered market like India.

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