An Interview with Daniel Graff-Radford for Website Planet. When talking about PRMs, Allbound is one of the first names that come up and with reason. We talked with Daniel Graff-Radford, CEO of Allbound, to know more about the platform, understand the company’s...
At Allbound we’re more than just a software company. We’re a team of passionate individuals working together to change the way sales and marketing is accomplished in the channel. Our fearless leader is #AllStar CEO and Founder Scott Salkin, Allbound’s Dallas Cowboy-loving, unicorn-believing, fraternal-twin-raising, idea machine.
Why are you so passionate about enabling channel sales?
After working in the channel for most of my career, it just got to the point where we got sick of not seeing any real innovation in the industry. So, when it comes to an opportunity to see an industry where you can step in and make a difference right away, that was perfect to be able to go in and say, hey, this is where we want to start a software company. We want to go in and disrupt an industry that needs it.
All the tools and software that have been in the channel for years now have all been about management and control. How do we control our partners? How do we control what they do, how they market, how they go to market, how they talk about our product? We want to make it more about empowerment. How do you empower them with the right tools, the right resources, the right content to be better at selling, better at marketing. And, instead of saying you’re not smart enough, you’re not good enough at selling, you can be great and here’s what you need to do that.
Right, there’s that culture shift that needs to happen from control to enablement. But isn’t that difficult to do with a channel stack?
The channel has always been siloed off into its own little area of an organization, rather than being part of the culture and part of the business that’s actually out there and growing, they’ve actually been put aside and told hey you’re secondary, even though they’re bringing in 40, 50, 60% of revenue. We want to change that. Instead of having a whole completely different channel stack, we want the channel to be a layer in your existing marketing stack, your existing sales stack. So, it leverages the existing investments you have in technology, it leverages the existing thought leadership and knowledge and expertise that you’re bring to your customers. That’s the only way that you’re going to make the channel be part of your entire business and entire growth, and that’s how you accelerate partner sales.
With so much tech involved in engaging partner sales reps and accelerating sales, where is the person to person interaction?
The channel is really so much about people, and I think we’ve kind of forgotten about that. So automating the human element out of the channel isn’t the way to do things. You’re talking about partnership, you’re talking about business partnership. Partnership cannot be automated. So, there’s a lot of things that still have that human element in it. How do you engage with your partners, how do you engage with their sales reps? How do you engage with the marketing team? And then most importantly, everyone kind of forgets about the customer. It’s not always about the channel manager, it can be about the customer who should be the nucleus of that whole relationship.
It’s all about collaboration and working together so you don’t do that by building walls. Just like you don’t have two separate stacks in the channel, you don’t build a wall between your direct sales team and your indirect sales team. It goes within the organization as well. You want everyone to be able to have access to each other and have those open lines of communication and collaboration — and that’s how you grow.
So Allbound’s about being a lot more than just software. We didn’t start this just to go out there and provide a great product, although that’s a big part of it. But the product is part of an engine that’s really building something bigger. We want to build a methodology, a thought process, a new way of doing channel, a new way of partnering and doing business together. That’s why we’re doing our conference CO:LLABORATE this year, that’s why we’re continuing to innovate and reinvent our tool on a regular basis. It’s why we’re hiring people who really understand and bring a different type of content marketing and digital type of mindset to the channel. It’s about being more than just technology and that’s what we see a lot of the great software, SaaS, companies doing these days.
Yes. Technology is important, but it’s not everything. How do you know your team is committed to the technology AND the partner sales acceleration methodology?
There’s a goal here. There’s a mission and a vision to go change something and we’re all in line with that and we’re working on that together. You can feel it when you walk in our doors.
Want to hear more of what Scott has to say? Register for CO:LLABORATE below.