Tuesday May 07, 2024

8. Channel Strategy with Harald Horgen (The York Group)

The theme of our eighth podcast episode is Channel Strategy. Joining our host Jeremy Balius to discuss all things channel strategy is Harald Horgen, Founder of The York Group.


In this conversation, Harald Horgen discusses his background in channel development and the evolution of the channel business model. He highlights the importance of cultural transformation in channel strategy and the challenges of navigating different business models in the channel. Horgen emphasizes the risk and reward of channel partnerships and the need for strategic alignment between vendors and partners. He also explores the concept of opportunity versus risk in channel relationships. He highlights the rapid and radical changes that can occur in the channel, as well as the importance of strategic partnerships.

Key Takeaways

- Channel partners are often reluctant to take on the risk of promoting new products, as it can disrupt their existing business models and relationships.

- Understanding the different business models in the channel is essential for vendors to identify the most suitable partners for their products.

- Opportunity and risk are inherent in channel partnerships, and vendors must provide support and value to their partners to mitigate risk and foster success. Channel partners are expected to create value for their vendors, but they are at risk of being replaced or marginalized.

- Recent events have shown that changes in the channel can be swift and radical, highlighting the risks that channel partners carry. ISVs should be cautious of opportunistic channel partners who may only be interested in a single opportunity.

- Analyzing partner performance is crucial for ISVs to identify and address non-performing partners.

- Developing strategic partnerships requires designated salespeople, activities-based marketing plans, and becoming an important part of the partner's business.

About Harald Horgen

Harald Horgen is an acknowledged expert on the challenges of building a successful international channel for technology products.

As the President and founder of The York Group, an international business development organization with partners across all major geographies, Harald has been opening new markets for his clients since 1993.  He has been personally involved in setting up channels in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa. He has worked with clients of all sizes, from small start-ups to industry giants such as Microsoft, Symantec, HP and Dell. 

His clients have come from more than 20 countries, including the U.S., Europe, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and India. A native and citizen of Norway, Harald attended high school in Canada, business school in Oslo and graduate school in Arizona.   

Fluent in English, Norwegian and French, he lived in France for 14 years, which by itself makes him an expert on overcoming cultural challenges! This is often a make-or-break strategy for companies as they expand beyond their domestic markets, and as is often the case, the difference between success and failure usually comes down to understanding a few basic principles that drive the business model.

Connect with Harald on LinkedIn.


B2B Tech Marketing Talks is a podcast bringing you insightful conversations with leading marketing and channel leaders about B2B tech marketing. Our goal is to provide you with valuable insights, fresh perspectives and practical advice from experienced marketing leaders who have successfully navigated the challenges you face daily as a B2B tech marketer.

For more about Filament, visit our B2B tech marketing agency and discover our digital marketing services

Follow Filament on LinkedIn.  

Connect with Jeremy Balius.  

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