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5 Ideas for Partners To Start Marketing Dynamics 365

With the Tuesday release of Microsoft Dynamics 365, as well as PowerApps and Flow, partner marketers may be feeling a bit overwhelmed right now.

Microsoft has promised to provide through-partner marketing materials soon, but partners should act now to show customers they are in front of the new products. Fortunately, there is no shortage of information partners can tap to create educational marketing materials to explain the impact and benefits of Dynamics 365.

Just sorting through the massive amount of information Microsoft has released to partners on Dynamics 365 is daunting. There's no doubt that your customers are feeling the same way, which is where you can really bring value through clear, simplified messaging. As a first step, separate your customers into groups who are likely to have common interests -- people with sales titles in one group, IT contacts in another, accountants in another, et cetera. 

For each of those subgroups, you'll be doing them a huge favor by filtering information about the changes coming with Dynamics 365. You don't need to send information about PowerApps to sales contacts, but anyone in IT will be very interested. Give descriptive titles to your marketing materials to help people find and focus on what is important to them.

Sources of information for Dynamics 365 abound, but there are a few links and posts that are particularly suited to support customer education, including:

5 Ways To Get Started Educating Your Customers
Use the resources above and your knowledge of your customers to create documents that have your brand and reflect your personality. Don't be afraid to admit there are challenges. It's OK to say, "This is all a bit confusing and we are going to help you sort through the complexity." You are your customers' advocate -- remind them of it.

Some ideas to get you started on your Dynamics 365 marketing journey:

  • FAQs: For each of the customer interest groups you have identified, create a short Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document. You can use PowerPoint to create an e-book format with graphics and text combined.

  • Demos: Have your consulting team create a series of short videos that walk through specific scenarios that apply to your target group's interests. Keep the videos short (three to five minutes) and focused on solving a specific business problem.

  • Customer Profiles: Ask a couple of your best customers to share their experiences using Dynamics 365. Interview members of their team once every two weeks and write a blog post with their observations. Include their photographs to give them reason to share the post with their friends and associates.

  • Community Connection Events: Start planning on-site seminars to introduce customers and prospects to Dynamics 365 and answer their questions in person. Consider asking the customers you have profiled to do a short presentation or even do the demo. If you don't have an ERP competency, ask a Dynamics ERP partner to support the event. It could be the start of a productive partnership.

  • Combine Words and Graphics: The combination of functions in the Enterprise and Business versions of Dynamics 365 is unfamiliar to your customers. They will be confused at first. Use some of the diagrams that Microsoft has built or create your own, but use graphics to help explain the Dynamics 365 ecosystem.  

It's an exciting time to be a marketer in the Microsoft partner channel. The hard part is knowing where to start and how to filter the big announcements into bite-sized pieces for your customers. The time is now to get in front of those customers and show them you are in lock-step with Microsoft. Help them see the vision and prepare them for change.

How are you preparing to market Dynamics 365? Add a comment below or send me a note and let's share the knowledge. 

Posted by Barb Levisay on November 02, 2016 at 1:05 PM