Zero Tier Distribution® enables a cost-effective, personal, sales-and-service partnership between new technology innovators and prospective customers, ultimately creating a ‘win-win’ scenario for both. Customers have access to the best, cutting-edge technology, and technology innovators gain sales access to a vast customer market via our multi-vendor approach.
Benefitting From Zero-Tier Distribution®
A good distribution model includes three important attributes: it creates a greatly magnified digital sales force, it’s broad, and it’s inexpensive.
In recent years product pricing has evolved from a purchase model to a pay-per-use model. This has changed the nature of being a supplier – everything is treated as a service that is paid for with recurring fees. The downside for a vendor is that a bunch of daily, monthly, or yearly payments does not compensate for one great big up-front payment they have traditionally been accustomed to. It does not matter if the deliverable is an actual service as physical products are being “sold” this way as well. A great example of this concept is zipcar.com. The use of any conceivable car is available to you on-demand and you do not pay a cent unless you use one.
The upside to receiving recurring payments is that they stay consistent, presuming the customer remains happy, and payments continue forever. Over time, this is a great business model for vendors as it reduces operational costs associated with maintaining or creating new revenue streams from one-time sales. However, in the short term, it can be financially challenging, or devastating, to align revenue acquisition costs to match new cash flow models.
Zero-Tier Distribution® and Resellers
MTP maintains an “on-demand” scalable field of independent experts we term “associates”, and we unite them under the processes we term “zero-tier distribution®”. In the past distribution implied using resellers. Multiple tiers referred to multiple resellers selling through each other to facilitate product stocking and distribute products across geographic areas. Tiers of resellers are expensive as everyone takes their cut. Zero-tier distribution® eliminates these costs.
Beyond external reseller tiers, the most precious resource for a company is an outside sales force. The outside sales force can quickly drain a new technology company of its cash while finding Product Market Fit (PMF) attempting to “cross the chasm”. This is also true for well-established companies launching a new product or service or mature ones where servicing established customers with account management gets expensive. Outside sales forces, ones that used to meet with customers in person, are evolving to a minimal, but very effective, digital sales force, except in the most complex environments. In complex environments, customers may still say they prefer to actually and routinely meet the suppliers of their critical solutions. However, in the face of the recent pandemic and given the dispersed geography where customer teams reside, meeting physically is longer the norm but the exception. Zero-tier distribution® augments and magnifies the effects of a minimally sized, yet expert, outside sales force working in tandem with a company’s digital sales efforts. MTP associates can support cost-effective, qualified customer onsite, and digital meetings to meet the needs of existing or prospective customers. They can selectively spend face-time digitally or in-person with the most precious, complex, or difficult accounts based upon their need.
Zero-Tier Distribution® with Sales and Marketing
The zero-tier distribution® idea expands on prior work improved upon by countless digital companies as is described by David Skok’s article here. Essentially we have implemented digital selling by combining sales and marketing into one effort by unifying well-trained but cost-effective MTP associates. These associates sell our client products and provide excellent services to all types of accounts and market segments. Zero-tier distribution® is most effective when combined with powerful sales based digital inbound-marketing programs, a clear value proposition, and accompanied by effective messaging.
Using Zero-Tier Distribution® before Explosive Growth
One reason zero-tier distribution® works is that it is primarily used to sell products that are in the explosive growth phase; that is, customers already understand the principles behind the products. It makes extensive use of our inbound marketing capability and as a result, we have ample eager customers calling associates who then often operate in the fulfillment and customer satisfaction mode. Access to highly-qualified associates has been recently amplified by substantial reductions-in-force or furloughs by many vendors.
We make two exceptions to our standing practice that the MTP associates only sell products people urgently want to buy. First, when a supplier has found product market fit, is in the ramp phase, and refining its business model, they may use associates to sell at a progressively increasing intensity to validate their business model. Second, we use the associates to judiciously help our clients searching for product-market fit to test their hypotheses. We can bring 50 validating prospects to a technology innovator in the time it takes the company’s native sales force to acquire just one.
MTP associates are a formidable force of over 100+ people using the powerful Zero-Tier Distribution® methodology. They bring economic health to market entrants adversely impacted by low-payment, recurring revenue business models.