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What is the best way to find distributors or alliance partners?

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We have traditionally used a direct sales model. But our company is exploring the idea of using distributors or alliance partners to resell our products. How should find distributors? Is it best to look for distributors by territory or industry? Does it matter whether our products are high volume or low?

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We have had a lot of success with LinkedIn.com, particularly for international distributors and sales agents. Search for both companies and individuals is effective.

  1. Go to the Advanced Search (top menu bar). A search form will pop up.
  2. In the Location area click +Add.
  3. Type the locations where you want to find distributors. For example "Sao Pa..." will bring up Sao Paolo Area, Brazil.
  4. Choose one or more Industries for you needs.
  5. if Language matters you can select the language.

While you can make it more refined, I recommend working with the longer search results first so see if you are on the right track. Once you have found a few people, just send them a LinkedIn message.