How Partnerships Make You Recession-Proof

The current economic downturn on top of the past few years of economic uncertainty has businesses in all industries worried about their current and long-term standing. While traditional cost-savings measures are implemented, it is also important to rely on your practices already in place, namely, partnerships. Partnerships have the ability to take things from good to great when we are in a boom, and are an excellent safety net during a recession. Now is the time to lean on your partners and the relationships you have with them to weather the storm.

Partnerships Reduce Internal Sales Costs

The resources required to hire, train, and most importantly, pay, in-house technical and sales talent is a daunting cost to absorb during a recession. By leveraging the team that your partners have in place, you can have more salespeople actively promoting your product, without the immediate rising cost of payroll. Lower your CAC by using partners that produce quality, warm leads, instead of chasing cold leads who aren’t ready to buy.

Partnerships Expand Your Market Reach

Partners have the ability to reach a variety of worldwide markets. This means that they may have direct connections with markets or industries that aren’t suffering from a downturn, and that have a need for your product. By creating strategic partnerships with companies that have reach in international markets you aren’t familiar with, you expand your potential reach, with a qualified guide along the way.

Partnerships Give You Credibility

Your partners have created connections with their clients that you aren’t privy to. Because they don’t know you from Adam, they rely on your partner to sing your praises, and help them understand why your product or service is the one that will address their pain point. Your partner’s clients know and trust them, and if they’re recommending your company, you’re automatically given a leg up with the end client.

Partnerships Help Extend Strategy

Clients want easy-to-find solutions to their pain points. During a recession, partnering with a complementary business is a way to bring comprehensive solutions to your clients that address multiple needs at one time. Whether you create exclusive offers, or a discount for buying from both companies, the benefit of engaging with both businesses will need to be decided on by what’s best for both partners.

Partnerships Let You Do What You Do Best

Partnerships let you get down to business. Literally. Whatever business you’re in, partnerships allow you to focus on the core elements of your business, and reduce a lot of the noise around marketing, selling, and closing. Use the feedback gained from your partners based on client evaluations and external perspective to improve your offerings. 

Partnerships are an integral component of business strategy. They pivot from being complementary to being necessary during a recession. Let xAmplify support your partnerships and grow your revenue with a system that enables your partners at every step of the customer experience.  Contact us to learn more.

5 Things To Look for When Choosing Partner Relationship Management Software

When it comes to scaling your business, an integral component of your growth strategy will likely include channel partnerships. With that comes the need to manage those partnerships to make sure that the relationship is beneficial to both parties, that KPIs are being met, and that your channel partners are adding value to your company. There are so many elements of integrating and maintaining channel partnerships, that it is almost impossible to manage it all manually without gaps or errors. 

Enter Partnership Relationship Management Software (PRM). PRMs help you seamlessly integrate channel partners into your workflow from onboarding onwards, without missing a step, while also keeping track of metrics. With hundreds of PRM options available, it’s important to know what to look for when choosing a PRM, and how it will impact your bottom line. 

Ease of Use

One of the most important elements to consider when choosing a PRM is how easy it will be for your team and your partners to use. Consider your team’s daily activities, and how the PRM will help facilitate their roles. Do the same for your partners; are training files easily accessible? Can they easily register new sales?     

Implementation Timeline

You’ve decided to use a PRM because you’re ready to continue to scale. Don’t choose a PRM with a long lead time for implementation, or that requires excessive support or costs to install. Look for a company with an engaged team that helps walk you through demos and setup so that you’re not left trying to search for answers to your new program.

Integration of Current Programs

Don’t redo work already in place in your CRM or ERP. A good PRM will allow for easy integration of your files and tools to give you access to all necessary documentation. This will make things easier for staff and partners knowing they are using up-to-date data in familiar formats. 

Functionality for Company Needs

With so many PRMs available, you need to understand what features you want from a PRM, and how they will benefit your company’s growth. Some areas you will want to consider are: 

  • Onboarding: Central location for all training and introductory materials
  • Training: Easy access to training material for varying products
  • Marketing Programs: Ability to share data, launch new campaigns, and automatically co-brand materials
  • Sales Leads: Manage leads in a consistent way that allows access for you and your partners
  • Stats: Define and measure KPIs for success management  

Cost and ROI

The full cost of a PRM cannot be measured solely in monthly charges. Evaluate what processes are streamlined, and how much time will be freed up, allowing you to focus on areas with higher returns. The same will be true for your team as processes are optimized, giving them the flexibility to focus on nurturing their leads. 

Finding the right PRM is a chance for you to evaluate your immediate and long-term channel partner needs, and understand how different features will help you reach your goals. A PRM should help you strengthen your relationships with your channel partners by making processes and procedures easier for you both. 

xAmplify is a PRM designed to make your channel partnerships easier to manage, and more profitable. Set up a time to talk to one of our representatives to see how xAmplify can help take you to the next level. Contact us today.

The Stages of Channel Partnerships and When You need to Level Up

Channel partnerships are an integral component of SaaS sales that lets your company expand its reach and industry impact, without adding to your headcount. With the global IT market reaching over $5 trillion dollars, there is ample room for channel partnerships, and using them to your advantage will benefit your staff, your company, and your bottom line.

Building a Successful Channel Partner Program

Creating a sustainable, profitable channel partner program takes thorough research prior to launch, and careful maintenance throughout your partner relationship.

Determine the Kind of Partners You Want to Work With

Though your partners aren’t employees, you will be working very closely with them, and want to forge a mutually beneficial relationship. Evaluate if their capacity and goals align with your needs, and if they have access to markets you want to break into. Are they the type of partners that you’re looking for? With different kinds of partnerships available with retailers, wholesalers, distributors, and more, you need to determine where and how you want your partners to expand your market reach.

Get in Touch

Think of the next stage like a courtship; you and your potential partner are getting to know each other, and seeing if you’re a mutually good fit. Have transparent dialogue that delves into what their needs are from a partnership, what your potential hurdles could be, and how they will help you stand out in a new market. 

Establish a Partnership Agreement

Now is not the time for handshake deals. Formalize your partnership with items like clear objectives, strategies and tactics, and partner resource allocation. Partner agreements keep both parties accountable to the standards and expectations of the partnership. Integrate metric tracking into your agreement so both you and your partner can measure the level of success they achieve. 

Develop Effective Onboarding and Communication Practices

Your channel partners can’t sell products they don’t know about. This step often isn’t as fine-tuned as it should be, and it gets partnerships off to a rocky start. Supply them with product information, brand standards, sales training, and more through a Partner Relationship Management (PRM) program like xAmplify to streamline the onboarding process. 

Provide Ongoing Support and Incentives

Keep your channel partners engaged with ongoing engagement and incentives to encourage their team members to put their best effort forward with your sales. Commission, a wholesale discount, or a sales performance incentive fund (SPIF) are common incentives provided to channel partners.

Growing Your Channel Partnership Program

In time, your channel partnership program will mature, and you will need to reevaluate current practices and see what you need to change or implement to continue its growth. When you are ready to scale your partnership program evaluate:

  • Channel analytics
  • Objectives and tiers
  • Expanding to include a different kind of partner type

However, the most important task to implement when looking to scale your partnership program is implementing the right PRM. It creates consistency throughout all of your channel partners, and gives them instant access to product lines and details, onboarding and training materials, and detailed analytics. The right PRM scales from just managing partners to enabling them with just-in-time content for marketing, sales and customer success. Not every PRM is designed to scale. xAmplify’s PRM is designed to help you grow as your program needs grow. Learn more by contacting us. 

Will Channel Sales Rule the World?

With channel sales representing 75% of the world’s sales, this sales model already rules the world. But most companies don’t do it until they have proven their direct sales model and have created a repeatable sales process. It’s the great force-multiplier to scale a good operation to great. Channel sales allows for growth, even at a time of economic uncertainty. If you think that you’re ready to add channel sales to your sales program, learn more about how xAmplify can help you create lasting partnerships.  

What are the Pros and Cons of Using Channel Sales?

Companies often hesitate to move to a channel sales program as they don’t fully understand how it works. We’ve broken down some of the most common pros and cons about channel sales to allow you to understand how channel marketing will impact your business. 

Pros

Scale Faster: Between optimizing lead generation, training salespeople, and streamlining closing practices, the ability to scale can feel like an uphill battle. Channel sales let you take the pressure off most of those things, and send them downline to your channel partners. Hiring and onboarding new sales reps is costly and time-consuming; channel partners have numerous reps at their disposal to help facilitate your growth. 

Expanded Customer Reach: Channel partnerships allow you to enter new markets without the costly effort and time that it takes to break into them. Use their current positioning in new markets to integrate yourself into them, without the effort that is usually required. Reach customers previously unavailable to you and expand your presence. Using channel partner marketing in a new market also lends an element of built-in trust to your product as it is promoted by a reputable source.  

Cons

Sharing Revenue: Obviously the largest negative, channel sales means that you share revenue with a third party, instead of keeping it in house as is the case when selling directly to customers. Your partnership contract will outline the specifics of the financials, including the revenue they retain, and any other costs. That being said, with the potential for your channel partner to generate a large number of sales, the overall benefit will exceed the percentage that they retain. 

Less Control Over Your Brand: By giving another company access to your brand’s products, you make the decision to put your brand’s reputation in their hands. A daunting idea. However, doing your due diligence and properly vetting potential partners will reduce this concern. Find partners whose values and mission align with yours. Create clear guidelines about how the channel partnership relationship will work, and use partner relationship management software to facilitate the implementation and sustenance of the relationship. 

A key component to channel sales is enablement or giving channel partners the ability to learn and understand the repeatable sales process your company has developed. The advent of the PRM allows partners to know everything they need to know about your product and how to sell it. That can be daunting for partners. It’s the partner equivalent to going to medical school to learn how to administer CPR or nurse a cut. This is where TCMAs or platforms like xAmplify help. Their enablement platform helps with just-in-time help for partners and micro-learning. These next generation partner communications platforms are revolutionizing how channel teams are working with partners. For instance, xAmplify enables partners with a 360 degree view of customers from the angles of marketing, sales and customer success. Channel management and marketing teams can communicate to and through their indirect sales partners. Plus the entire platform is architected to ensure GDPR/CCPA compliance. No other partner platform is able to do that. This approach helps companies drive greater levels of partnership success and revenue, than ever before while increasing the lifetime value of customers.  Want to learn more about xAmplify, contact us.

Why is Partner Relationship Management Software Critical for Your Channel?

In the ever-evolving professional landscape, and the total integration of cloud applications, using a quality partner relationship software is more important than ever. A PRM takes you from partners to teammates, integrating and managing complementary priorities as you manage goals, targets, and sales.  xAmplify is a PRM designed and built with partners in mind; we eliminate friction, and implement automation for engaging, managing, and educating partners.

What is a PRM?

A Partner Relationship Management program streamlines the process of companies that engage in channel partner programs. PRM software allows for portal management so partners can easily access your company’s program, while also allowing them to access leads, register deals, and analyze sales metrics.  {link to article about PRM}

How does a PRM Impact Business?

Using a PRM reduces duplication of work, and creates a standardized, yet customizable, process for all channel partners. A PRM gives you control of your partner program and allows you to optimize it as a revenue-generating asset.

A PRM establishes strategic business standards and provides easy access through a partner portal where partners can find a number of resources.

Onboard Partners

Training documents and resources can be housed in a PRM to ensure your partners have access to all required onboarding documents. From product orientation to marketing briefs to lifecycle statistics, a comprehensive training program can be uploaded to the partner portal.   

Lead Management

Minimize the duplication of leads through a lead management component in a PRM. Eliminate having to track down a lead status, or asking for updates; both you and your partners can see and share leads as they come in. 

Reduce Length of Sales Cycle

With efficient lead management, and deal tracking, sales cycles are reduced, resulting in faster sales. Deal registration lets partners register deals that syncs directly with Salesforce without any customization or hassle, removing yet another barrier to finalizing the deal.

Partner Insights

Take the guesswork out of your partners’ engagement. Built-in analytics let you assess your partners’ engagement with your program, campaigns, and content. Eliminate partnerships that don’t serve you, and reward ones that do. Evaluate partner growth and impact on revenue from your partner dashboard.

Integrated Content

Marketing asset distribution is made easy with a PRM, as you can create and upload marketing materials directly to the PRM. Reduce the amount of time spent managing marketing materials; partners can download content as a PDF or HTML.

xAmplify’s partner program solutions help you unlock revenue potential across your partners, while also establishing sustainable revenue growth, and end-to-end pipeline transparency. A PRM is a great first step in your program maturity. To learn more about how to digitally transform your channel business, contact us at xAmplify. 

Make Your Partners a Growth Engine During a Down Economy

Economists, CEOs, VCs, and entire companies are preparing for an impending economic downturn. War, inflation, stock market losses and crypto problems are clear indicators of trouble. The uncertain environment makes companies nervous. As we have seen with past economic troubles, companies that focus on fundamentals and sustainable growth during uncertain times become outliers and unicorns during good times. Paypal, Microsoft, Apple, AirBnB and Netflix are just a few examples.

Taking a deeper look into these companies, we see that most of them relied on their channel partners and relationships to help them stay afloat and thrive during times of trouble. It’s not a secret but, today more than ever, companies need to focus on making their partnerships a competitive advantage. During the last economic downturn, most companies’ channel partners were only resellers and VARs. Today, there are many more flavors of partnerships: managed service providers, technology, ecosystem and alliance partners. The bottom line is you need to make sure these partners are driving additional revenue for your company, otherwise they are just satisfying a vanity metric. However, succeeding at this task won’t be easy to do.

We’ve compiled a list of 5 key steps to help you make all types of partnerships a competitive advantage and a way to drive additional revenue during an economic downturn.

  1. Digitally Transform Your Partnerships: The very unfortunate reality is that many companies are going to be reducing staff. To prepare for this, make sure you have the digital infrastructure in place to generate more partnerships, manage them efficiently, and track their effectiveness with fewer resources. PRMs are a great start, but access to data and insights breaks down after a partner has logged in and downloaded a piece of content. You must think beyond that. How would you get access to their marketing efforts? How would you see the effectiveness of content? What would conversation rates look like? How can you enable partners to close deals for you? You need to know the exact attribution models for everything you are doing for your partners. Make sure your platform can handle the different types of your partnerships: technology, resellers, ecosystems, alliances and more. There are very few platforms that can help with attribution models for every flavor of partnership.
  2. Make Data Driven Decisions: Just like in direct sales models. You need to have data to make decisions. Understand which partners are actively marketing for you, what their pipeline looks like, see what content is working or not. Feed the partners that are driving the pipeline and make sure they have the necessary sales tools to help close business. Your partner is an extension of your own sales team. They are the force multiplier, so make sure they have everything at their disposal to close business. Understand which partners are not keeping up. Use your data to find out who they are and how to help them succeed. You don’t want to have partners with stagnant business. That will only hurt your cause. 
  3. Open Communications: Partners are just as scared as you or more because they have a business that can go under quickly. Have a straightforward conversation with them about the situation. Make this a regular check in. Help them understand that you are in it together. The way to face the storm ahead is by working together and getting sales and revenue going. That is the best way partners and companies will survive adding to the bottom line.
  4. Do the Work Yourself: Making things easier is going to help your effort go a long way. Be the partner’s CMO and VP of Sales. This will build trust. Helping partners with lead generation, pipeline development, sales enablement and continued support is critical. That sounds like a lot of work for a company that might be reducing staff too. The good news is that technology can help. Use great technology to help partners with each stage. Channel Marketing Automation platforms are a good step. But most of them just create more work. xAmplify is one of the few that make things simpler and easier. It can not only help you but help your partners. It was designed from the ground up to make things dead simple for you and your partners. That is why we get results!
  5. More Data: After you’ve completed the steps above, use the obtained data to grow your partner business. Similar to looking at viral coefficients, you want to see what is driving the business: types of partners, content, time, date, campaign types, etc. You’ll be able to be more driven by results and solutions. Also, don’t forget to show the data to your CRO, CEO and CMO. They will see how the partner team is driving sales and the business. 

The uncertainty ahead is causing lots of turmoil. By focusing on partnerships, your company can turn the economic downturn into the unicorn opportunity for your company. To learn more about how to digitally transform your channel business, contact us at xAmplify. 

How Automation Changed Marketing

Marketing automation has changed the way direct marketing is done. Companies like Marketo and Hubspot have made it easier and quicker for companies to repeatedly send marketing campaigns to a large number of people at once, to target specific audiences, and to generate leads. This change is happening in the Channel as well. 

Like direct marketing, marketing automation for the Channel often called Through Channel Marketing Automation (TCMA) is making it easier for companies and their partners to generate leads. It also makes it easy for partners to send their vendor’s campaigns to their (the partner’s) customers.

What is Marketing Automation?

Marketing Automation is the process of using technology to automate repetitive tasks such as sending emails, posting on social media, and more. It can also be used to personalize marketing campaigns such as addressing each campaign to a specific person. All of this personalization and automation make it easier to get qualified leads as with automation, you can send marketing messages to the right prospects at the right time. This frees up your sales and marketing teams to spend their time doing more important things such as market research and selling. 

Marketing automation has most commonly been used for direct marketing and sales for both B2B and B2C. According to Marketo, businesses that use automation grow their pipeline by 45% and their revenue by 25%

Automation also helps businesses respond to prospects faster by reaching the prospect through various channels and touchpoints. For example, a marketing campaign can be automatically set up to launch as soon as a prospect signs up for a webinar, fills out a form on the website, or downloads a whitepaper. It also makes it easy to stay in touch with prospects and customers which helps businesses stay relevant and is something most prospects and customers want. 

Marketing Automation and The Channel

While Marketing Automation has become the standard for direct marketing, it isn’t the standard for the channel. From what we’ve heard from our customers and prospects, it’s because of 2 reasons: awareness and adoption. Most of the people we’ve talked to don’t know that marketing automation can be used for the Channel and the people who did know about marketing automation haven’t adopted it for their business. This is either because they don’t see the need for marketing automation and don’t know what it can do for them or because they’re not ready. 

Through Channel Marketing Automation

Unlike direct marketing, channel marketing involves more than just the company and the person being marketed to. You’ve got yourself, your partners, and their prospects or customers, so your marketing has to go through your partners before reaching your target audience. However, TCMA can benefit the channel in the same way that marketing automation benefits direct marketing. 

Customers who use us or other TCMA platforms have experienced an increase in revenue growth for themselves and their partners and an increase in partner engagement. They’ve also gotten increased visibility into what their partners are doing with the marketing material they’ve been given. 

These platforms make it easy for partners to send vendors’ marketing campaigns as all the work has been done for them by the vendor. For example, partners simply have to upload a contact list for an email campaign and press send. However, these “done for partner” campaigns don’t just have to be email campaigns. They can be videos introducing new products, webinars or other event announcements, or even landing pages for special offers. 

Also, partners and vendors can easily co-brand campaigns such as joint webinars, coordinated social media posts for a new product launch, email campaigns for industry news, and more using a marketing automation platform as the platform will automatically insert both the partner’s and vendor’s information. All both of them have to do is add their content. 

Also like direct marketing automation, TCMA gives you the data you need to see how well your marketing messages performed. You’ll get metrics such as the open rate of emails, the number of views on a video, what links were clicked on, and more. However, with TCMA, in addition to metrics on how well your marketing messages did, you’ll also see partner metrics. You’ll see metrics such as the number of downloads for a piece of collateral, the number of times a campaign was reshared, the location of your partners’ contacts when they view your video, and more. With this data, you can see who your top-performing partners are and who you may need to talk to. 

Conclusion

TCMA has proven that it can change channel marketing strategies while making marketing easier for both partners and vendors. Vendors benefit from the visibility TCMA provides that allows them to increase partner engagement without requiring more time.  Both partners and vendors are given the freedom to focus on more important aspects of their businesses, such as selling products, innovating, responding to customers, and more. 

Trust Factors: How to quickly build trust in your partnerships

Good partnerships are built on trust. But how do you get your partners to really trust you? What factors should you consider? Dr. Paul Zack answers these questions and more in the latest Partnernomics episode. Dr. Zack is currently a professor of economics at Claremont Graduate University and joins host Mark Brigman, to talk about his new book Trust Factor.

Here’s what we learned:

-Relationships need to be built intentionally in order for them to work

– High performers want chances to grow. If you’ve got a really high performing partner, make sure they have opportunities to grow with you. 

– At a minimum, once a month, video chat with your partners to build/maintain trust.

– To get to know your partners better, put them in a stressful situation (ex. Take them skydiving). This gives you an idea of how well you’ll work together in the future. 

– To build trust with your partner, you can give them a medium-stakes project to handle. This will also help you judge how well the partnership will work. 

Listen to the full episode here for more insights into what factors affect trust both in partnerships and your own organization.

3 Things to Do to Make Mergers Easier on Your Partners

Mergers are a chaotic time for everyone. You have to figure out how to merge your finances, your departments, your partner programs, and much more. Your partners are going to be wondering exactly what is happening with your partner program and what it means for them. You’ll also have to pick and choose which aspects of your partner program you want to keep and why. 

Here’s 3 things you should do to help guide your partners through the merger and how partner insights can help you decide which parts of your partner program you should keep. 

  1. Communicate, communicate, communicate

Everything runs on proper communication. As soon as you find out what the merger means for your partner program let your partners know. Your partners will need to know what the new system looks like and what it means for them. Make sure to introduce them to any new channel managers or other team members they may be working with in the future. Make sure to make yourself or one of your other team members available to answer any questions they have. 

Constantly communicating with your partners during this process will show your partners that you’re thinking about them and how the merger will affect their business. This will strengthen your relationship with them and in turn, their engagement. Also, make sure to note down any questions or feedback they have so you can address it when merging your partner programs. 

  1. Train your partners, train your team, train yourself

Unfortunately, figuring out what to tell your partners isn’t the only thing you have to do. You have to figure out how to merge your partner programs. Is one partner program more mature than the other? Which elements of the partner programs should you keep? Should you get rid of any elements? What are the costs of switching partners from one program to another? Should you keep the platforms’ partners used or should you switch everyone to a new one? 

All of these are questions you will have to ask before you decide how to move forward with a new or combined partner program. Often this will mean training your partners and yourself on a new tool that you’ll have to use. You’ll have to create a training program, schedule webinars, and maybe even sit down with them and walk them through the new tool. 

Along with training your partners on new tools, your team will have to be trained as well. So will you. This is harder than it sounds as your business doesn’t stop running when you undergo a merger. You have to find time to train your team and yourself while still keeping up with your responsibilities. 

If possible try and train your team and your partners together. This will help your team and your partners get to know each other and start building a relationship. Your partners will know who they can contact with questions, issues or advice and your team can get immediate feedback on the new tools. 

  1. Make things easier

A merger is a great time to take a look at what’s worked and what hasn’t. Your workflows are changing, your tools are changing, and you’ve gotten new people with new ideas. Set up some time with your team, bring the feedback your partners have given you and think of some ways to make things easier on your partners. 

That could look like having more regular meetings with your partners. Maybe you only met once or twice a month before and your partners would prefer meeting on a weekly basis. Perhaps your partners are overwhelmed with your onboarding process and want a quick start guide on how to jump in and start selling. Or maybe you want more insight into how your partners use your content and want to introduce or switch to a new tool. Whatever it is, now is a good time to restructure your partner program to make things easier for your partners. 

How partner insights make mergers easier

If you’re currently undergoing a merger, this is an intimately familiar scenario. Your company has announced that it’s merging with another company and the next thing you know, you’ve got someone in your office asking you about your partner program. They’ll probably want to know what tools you use to manage your program, how many people are on your team and your ideal partner profile. But, then they’ll want to know things like who are your top performing partners? What percentage of revenue comes from your partners? How many leads do your partners generate? 

Do you find yourself struggling to answer those questions? You can answer some of these questions with the deal registration form data you get from your partners, but not all of them. Previously, we talked about how to actually measure partner engagement and what those metrics tell you in our post: The True Measure of Partner Engagement. With those metrics, you can easily answer the question of who your top performing partners are and talk your partners up to your new team members. 

Metrics such as Marketing Activities and Social Sales measure how much marketing your partners do on your behalf and the types of marketing and sales activities your partners do. These can be used to show how engaged your partners are and what type of support they may need from your new partner program. Here’s an example. 

Everytime you make a major change to your product, Partner A sends out an email campaign to their customers describing the change and how it benefits them. They also reshare every single one of your social posts and constantly ask to run webinars with them, host conferences and be a guest host on their weekly podcast. They’re really enthusiastic about marketing you and they generate a lot of potential leads. But, they don’t share them with you. 

Partner A doesn’t need any help with their marketing efforts. Their marketing actives and social sales scores are within your excellent range. However, their lead generation score, the metric that measures how many leads your partners share with you, isn’t great. You talk to them and realize that they’re confused about your lead criteria, especially since you’re undergoing a merger. Then, you go back, discuss with your team and decide to send out an email outlining the changes to your lead criteria. You also put these updates into your partner portal so your partners can view them at any time.

Now, your partners are happy because they know what types of leads they should give you to get their commission and you’re happy because you’re getting the types of leads you want. These types of insights makes it easier to decide how to best merge your partner programs because you can spot areas where your partners seem to struggle and look for ways to help. It helps you make a case for any elements of the partner program that you want to get rid of as you can point to the data and say this is why our current partners were struggling. 

Conclusion

Mergers are chaotic times where everything changes. You’ll have to be the one guiding your partners and your team through the changes. You’ll also have to convince your bosses which parts of your partner program are worth keeping or should be discarded and data is your most powerful tool in that conversation. 

Constantly communicating with your partners will make the changes easier for you and them. You’ll also have to train everyone and yourself on any new tools you decide to use. You’ll be getting a lot of questions and feedback in this process which you can then use to simplify your new partner program for your partners. 

Finally, measuring your partners’ sales and marketing activities can give you a good idea of which parts of your partner program are worth keeping and which ones could use a change. This data, along with the feedback you get from your partners will help you take the best elements of both companies’ partner programs and create a better one for the new company going forward. 

3 Reasons Why Your Partners Reduce Your Lead Conversion Time

You know those times when you keep following up with a lead, but they don’t see any closer to making a decision? Eventually, you either have to force the lead to make a decision or let them go. But, what if you could shorten the time it took for the lead to make a decision and convert to a customer? What if you could get them to trust you quicker, give them an offer that helps them make a decision quicker and respond faster to their requests. 

You can if you have partners. Here’s 3 reasons why your partners can reduce the time it takes for your lead to convert into a customer. 

  1. Partners organically introduce you

Which are you more likely to trust? A random ad that gets inserted into your Twitter feed or a brief paragraph on a new product in a company newsletter that you’ve subscribed to? If you answered the latter, you’re like the rest of us. 

People are more likely to use a product that’s recommended by someone they trust. Having your partners introduce you organically, like mentioning you in their newsletter, automatically gets their customer’s attention in a way that a random Twitter ad never could. They’re already primed to like you.

  1. Partners offer your product as part of a package

Which product are you likely to buy? Software that you have to install and set up yourself or a software package that includes an installation and set up service? You’ll probably want the latter because it saves you time and effort. 

Partners who offer your product as part of a package are more likely to get you, buyers, you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise. They expand your reach and help you find more opportunities. Offering your product as part of a package also makes the decision process a little easier. 

  1. Partners help you respond faster

Who are you going to like more? A company that responds to your meeting request within an hour or a company that takes a whole day to respond? You’re going to like the one that responds as quickly as possible and your partners can help you be that company. 

Your partners can take some of the load off of your sales team and help you respond to meeting requests as quickly as possible. Perhaps your sales team’s calendar is booked through the next month, but your prospect wants a meeting this month. Your partner can attend that meeting on your behalf, satisfying the prospect with their quick response time. This makes them more likely to convert as they’ve seen that you and your partners respond to their requests quickly. 

It takes a while for a lead to turn into a customer. Leads often do their own research, are more likely to go with companies they already trust, and want to be responded to as quickly as possible. For a single company, this often translates into a long lead conversion time. 

This time can be shortened by having your partners help you convert your lead to a customer. Your partners can help you respond to lead requests faster, offer your product as part of a package to make it look more attractive, and quickly establish trust with your lead. Your partners’ actions prime the lead to like you and shortens the time it takes them to get to know you.