Opinion: How To Have Success W/ Bitdefender’s MDF Program

The Upside

What I love about Bitdefender‘s program is that they are very giving with their internal resources and committed to facilitating your success. While they aren’t going to pick up the entire tab on your marketing expenses (few vendors do), I get the sense they will in fact invest the time and energy necessary to help you grow. Some vendors I have talked to throughout this process prefer very “buttoned-up” and cookie-cutter campaigns, whereas I get the sense that Bitdefender pushes their partners to innovate and think outside the box. They also have a great process in place to accept these proposals from within a portal, a benefit that is preferred by MSPs.

The Downside

From my own experience, I know how difficult it can be to communicate through a distributor or intermediate vendor to get MDF. I once spent months trying to get in touch with one of our hardware vendors to discuss a sponsorship opportunity, which seemed to only progress once I finally talked to the right person. Heather and her team are vocal in the channel and accessible via LinkedIn, so if you are having trouble getting communications through, I recommend going direct to ask questions and get the answers you need to tap into this great program. You can also register for their partner advantage portal here. Aside from this matter of logistics, I get the sense that Bitdefender prefers to collaborate on a lot of the details of your campaign. This is by no means a “downside” if it produces better results, but if you are looking for a vendor that is going to be hands-off and just write you a check, then this might not be the right opportunity for you.

Getting Approved

Once you are tapped in to Bitdefender’s portal, you will be asked to provide a lot of the basic details of your campaign. Don’t let this become a barrier for submittal if there is a lot you don’t know. I have the feeling that they would rather you reach out to signal your interest, even if you need some help filling in the blanks. Their requirement of taking a full funnel campaign approach is actually a good thing. While it may restrict what gets immediately approved, it will increase your likelihood of having success and force you to follow marketing best practices that you can learn from.

Achieving Results

If you are going to utilize Bitdefender’s human and financial resources, I recommend first thinking of your efforts in terms of touches. As Heather clearly articulated, they prefer to have as many as eight touchpoints to the prospect throughout the life of the campaign. These will come in various forms such as ads, emails, videos, articles, events, or even meetings. As you map out these touchpoints, you should realize that you don’t need to close the deal on the first touch. It is better to ease the audience through using both education and entertainment to do so. If you focus on what will be most engaging to the highly targeted audience you have chosen, the results will follow as the potential buyer’s level of interest peaks.

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Facts: About Bitdefender’s MDF & Enablement Program

Which of the following does Bitdefender offer their partners?

Reimbursement of Campaign Expenses
Pre-created Content & Campaign Templates
Live/ Virtual Sales & Marketing Training
Pre-Developed Software Tools & Resources
Hosted Live & Virtual Events

How does Bitdefender determine which partners qualify?

Based on being part of the partner program and submitting a marketing plan with the request for funding. For enablement activities, they can work with their distributor or RMM to coordinate needs or directly work with the cloud and MSP team at Bitdefender.

What are the typical financial limits of what Bitdefender will reimburse (Quarterly)?

$2,500-$5,000.

Will Bitdefender work with third-party consultants and marketing agencies that provide services to the MSP?

Yes.

What percentage of Bitdefender partners have received MDF or enablement benefits in the last year (estimated)?

0-25%.

Is there any risk to the MSP if the campaign does not produce results?

No, if we agree on a campaign, there is no risk of not being reimbursed as long as the activities are done. If something is not logistically possible anymore, we are open to adjusting the tactics to what is possible.

How long does it take on average to get reimbursed from Bitdefender for any pre-approved expenses?

Up to 1 Month.

What is the best way to get started utilizing Bitdefender’s MDF program?

This site will allow you to sign up, but we also recommend working with your distributor or RMM provider as well throughout the process.

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