Channel Marketing is quite complex. If you think about it a vendor with a direct business model has things relatively easy. Their marketing plans can be absolutely focused on the end customer. They can get to know their target customers in depth and then build out message roadmaps and marketing activities which “target” the customer according to what stage of the buyer journey they are on. It may well involve a lot of work, but the concept is straight-forward.
A vendor with an indirect business model doesn’t have it so easy. If they have a 2-tier channel then they will be selling their products to distributors who, in turn, will be selling those products to resellers or retailers who, in turn, will be selling those products to end customers, be they consumers or businesses. A vendor with a single-tier channel will be selling its products directly to resellers or retailers (i.e. missing out distributors or wholesalers).
That’s a lot of marketing. Firstly the vendor needs to equip the distributor with all of the information about the product which it needs to sell/market the product to resellers – including sales and marketing tools. Then it needs to help the distributor (usually physically and financially) to develop and implement marketing campaigns and activities which “persuade” the resellers to buy the product in question. Then they need to work with the resellers to market the product to its existing customer base and, ideally, to potential new customers too. As I said, that’s a lot of marketing.
You might argue that the vendor might only be responsible for marketing its products to the distributors. Then the distributor would take responsibility for marketing to the resellers, and the resellers would do the marketing to the end customers. But it doesn’t work like that.