Are you considering partnership management software to complement your new partner program? It can be tricky to navigate these waters, especially if you aren't sure you'll have the Executive buy-in needed to make it happen. We realize there's a lot to explain and typically it needs to be done in a short amount of time. Below, you'll find a high-level Quick Guide designed to address 7 key benefits:
Program Formalization, Transparency, Co-Selling, Automation (CRM), Resources & Education, Attribution, and Account Mapping.
First things first, do your research.You'll find a number of great resources and stats highlighting the benefits of a partner program. If it helps get you started, our customers’ sales cycles are 40% faster and 19% more likely to close when a partner is involved in a deal. Also, on average, our customers purchase PartnerPortal.io before they reach 100 direct customers.
For more resources, check out this interview with Jay McBain on the PartnerUpPodcast for some inspiration!
Make your case.Once you've done your research and have built partnerships, it's time to make your case for why this issue is important and why now is the time to act. Be clear, concise, and persuasive in your argument, and make sure you have specific examples to back up your points.
Be prepared for pushback. Even if you have a strong case, it can be hard to relay everything you have in your head and notes.
Now, let's dive in to 7 key benefits!
1) Program Formalization
If a company is investing in partnerships, alliances and product integrations, the systems and processes should also support this investment. As a company evolves the program, a partner portal isn't just appreciated but often expected. In fact, before engaging in a partnership some companies require that a new partner offers a partner portal for data safety and their internal process. Whether you're scaling a program or just getting off the ground, a partner portal is a great way to demonstrate your commitment to your partners at each stage of the relationship.
A common challenge among partners is often the lack of visibility, updates and transparency after a lead or contact is shared. By processing new leads through a platform likePartnerPortal.io, partners gain full deal stage visibility. Both parties are able to track a lead as it progresses and ultimately ends up Closed Won.
This transparency gives partner managers and account executives the confidence to submit a lead and have an up-to-date view at all times.3) Co-Selling
Within each lead, our platform offers a Comments feature for AE's, partner managers and BDRs to communicate directly regarding the details of a lead or contact. If you aren't at a stage where sellers are actively communicating with each other or sharing a Slack Workspace, this offers a way to simplify communication between two separate organizations directly on the lead.
4) Automation + Scale (CRM Integration)
Working from Google Spreadsheets and email isn't scalable nor is it efficient for either party. Although you've established a partnership, you aren't going to provide new partner access to your CRM and your own systems. You also want your own team focused on selling and their core duties, rather than manual data entry each time a partner submits a new lead. This is a mutual challenge that spurred partner relationship managers from the beginning and remains a strong driver for a tool likePartnerPortal.io.
With metrics such as partner influence, partner sourced and partner impact becoming increasingly top of mind, a partner portal offers a simpler way to evaluate your program and while recognizing program optimizations.
PartnerPortal.io offers partner impact metrics for each individual partner as well as the sellers across their teams.
6) Resource Center & Educating Partners
Whether it's Battle Cards, API documentation or logos, new partners will always need assistance with selling your products. Hosting these files in a Google Drive can present friction between permission settings and external sharing restrictions, allowing a partner portal to become a great alternative to maintain accessibility while avoiding time-consuming requests from partners through email.
7) Opportunity Mapping
With our new Crossbeam integration, account mapping and co-selling just became a lot easier. WithinPartnerPortal.io, we can show you the companies that you and your partners share mutually, as well as upcoming prospects. By surfacing this data directly in our portal, lead registrations and deal attribution can be tied directly to these insights.