So, your goal is to increase your number of engaged partners, right?
After all, if your partners aren’t engaged and actively closing deals for you, then there’s not much point. However, in order for your relationship to work, you must be giving back. This comes in the form of a well-thought out partner journey.
But as the scale and complexity of your partner program increases, it’s easy for standards to slide. Without the proper tools and processes in place, your partner experience will naturally become compromised, and this can have downstream consequences that go further than a disgruntled channel manager.
It’s imperative that you have the right tools in place to help you grow and nurture your partner ecosystem. In this article, we’re unpacking what the current partner tech market is like, as well as looking at what type of tool you need and at what stage of your partner journey.
The rise of partner tech
A partner program in its infancy
When you’re just beginning to grow your partner program, it’s likely you won’t have two pennies to rub together. A poor channel manager begging for budget scraps until you can prove your worth. So, it’s manual work like spreadsheets for you – woohoo.
A popular alternative to jumping straight into a co-sell tool is lead swapping. This is where companies exchange leads with partners instead. This is worth considering if you don’t have any business relationships yet and want an easy way of generating leads, without having to invest in tech straight away.
You’ll notice as you shop around that while there’s still a lot of delineation between direct sales and partnership selling, most tech investment is still heavily skewed towards customer relationship management (CRM) tools. Make sure when you do invest in a tool that has the right capabilities for your program.
Once you are ready to invest in your partner tech stack, you can get the ball rolling with co-selling tools such as account mapping. Some options include Reveal, Crossbeam and PartnerTap. However, you may not want to invest in a full platform just yet.
It’s a balancing act between finding the right tech to facilitate your partner’s growth without overspending. But whatever stage you’re at, keep your partner’s experience at the forefront of your mind to ensure they keep coming back to you.
The value of partnerships
There’s a lot of value in partnerships. Businesses report that by moving to an ecosystem model of trading, they typically see:
Now, your focus can be on creating an ideal experience for your partners. By doing so, you will not only retain them, but open up more growth opportunities. Partners are way more likely to advocate for you if they’re engaged and happy.
Keeping partners engaged
It’s imperative you show your partners you’re dedicated to them by providing an unparalleled experience. This is what Allbound has coined as ‘co-keep.’
Co-keep focuses on retaining partners. This is what PRM technology has been helping businesses achieve for many years.
With a co-keep solution in place, the partner experience ensures an enduring and valuable relationship, driven by transparency, ease of interaction and mutual responsibility. This makes for a resilient ecosystem.
The co-keep stage also provides tremendous opportunity to identify other ideal partners. There are many AI-driven signals, such as partner activity, deal frequency, velocity and value, engagement indicators, and user behavior, that can be used to identify the very best partners to add to your ecosystem through the co-sell motion.
Grow and engage your ecosystem partners with PRM
Easily prioritize your partner relationships by automating and analyzing each step of your partnership lifecycle