Having a distributor can be a real help to expand your reach, but finding a good distributor can be a difficult task. Here’s how business owners can find the distribution partner of their dreams.
By using a distributor, business owners can open up their revenue streams at home and abroad, but trying to locate a distributor can prove difficult, especially when a business owner may not know what to do.
Speaking on the My Business Podcast, serial entrepreneur Mat Collett shares how he recently signed a deal with a distributor to take his latest venture, Solar D Sunscreen, into six countries.
“I've been working on a deal in the offshore markets to expand the development and the process. We signed a deal with a group called KW International,” Mat says on the My Business Podcast.
“They've got the sell rights to US, Canada, Mexico, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea. We'll be entering those markets this year.”
While a profitable partnership for Mat, not all business owners are as lucky when it comes to finding the right distributor. From his own experience over multiple businesses, Mat provides his simple yet effective tips for finding the right distributor:
1. Meet with the distributor
“They all promise but once it comes to delivery, you've got to go over there and meet them,” Mat shares.
“You got to see the whites of their eyes and make sure that they are who they say they are. Make sure they're telling the right story. Make sure they've got the distribution.”
While it seems simple, it is not a quick process, as Mat says it can take years to find the right distributor.
“I've worked on this for two years to get the offshore partnership, and met probably five to 10 groups we could've gone with,” he says.
“These guys had the distribution and the offices in the right places at the right time.”
2. Ensure the distributor is enthusiastic
While a distributor can have the right contacts and knowledge, if they do not believe in your business as much as you believe in it, Mat says there is no point to partner with them.
“You need to find someone that is just as willing. They want to put pressure on you to succeed. That's the partner you want to find,” Mat says.
“Otherwise, you're just a one-trick pony. You're dealing with one group, and they've got thousands of other products. It just becomes part of the train.”
3. Be willing to pay up
Like anything in life, nothing good comes cheap. Business owners will need to pay a substantial amount if they expect to have a partner that is worth it.
“It's a costly process, [but again] for the right partner and the right reason, you're going to end up with the right result,” Mat says.
“It's like anything; if you cut corners and try to cheapen it, it never works in the long run. It's better off doing it the hard way, doing it the proper way, and usually a [costlier] way.”