A well-designed partner program is a thing of beauty. Expansion into new markets, lower costs of acquisition, lower churn, and overall higher revenue for any organization. However, these should be thought of as lagging indicators that aren’t possible without first laying the groundwork for your partner program, the first build block being a very clear GTM strategy with partners.

Are you ready to create a partner program; but struggling to find the right indicators to create one?

In order to create a successful partner program, the channel cannot operate in a silo. Maintaining executive-level support for your aspirations of a world-class partner program will be paramount for success.

Follow these action steps to define, refine and secure your success channel program:

1. Setting up clear goals & KPIs

The partnership relies entirely on aligning the goals of your organization to those of the partner. Keeping this partnership going smooth, it is important to have crisp and clear objectives in the partner program. While onboarding your partners, it’s important to share, discuss and finalize your KPIs together, and then agree on a regular cadence of reviewing them together. This will help keep both organizations on the right track.

2. Keeping communication clear

Having a dedicated platform for communication is non-negotiable. It is important to use a platform that allows you & the partner to exchange innovative ideas, share real-time market insights, discuss the existing competition and align on revenue drivers.

Your partners should be aware of all the tools, like a partner portal they have in their tool bet. Does your partner sales rep know who to contact if they need help? Within your partner portal, make sure your channel reps have this type of information at their fingertips, don’t make them spend too much time looking. When a partner has a question, make sure your organization commits to a strict SLA around response, and resolution times. Don’t leave your partner wondering if/when they will hear back from you.

3. Optimize your web presence

It is crazy to think that not too long ago humans were comfortable listening to the dial tone as a web page loaded. Now, if a web page takes more than 3 seconds to load, we are frustrated and never come back to that page. Do you think your partner wants to wait more than 3 seconds for their deal registration platform to load?

No.

Another key cornerstone that you can control is ensuring the partner portal you deploy to your partners isn’t lagging in the 20th century. Leveraging tools like groups and tiers allows you to optimize the partner experience for optimum engagement but only showing partner sales reps what they need to see, and when.

4. Equipping your partners

All the best knowledge, playbooks, and tools don’t mean anything unless you are deploying the correct toolset to deliver that knowledge. Often, organizations forget (or neglect) what the partner experience should be and fail to deliver the proper tools, therefore creating more barriers for their own partners.

Pre-sales tools are essential since they include all the training videos and presentations that allow a sales rep to deliver a well-defined pitch. Post-sales tools are required when a channel partner signs a contract, and start working towards providing value to the end customer.

The purpose of creating a partner program is to bridge the gap between you and your partner. Offering partners, the presentations & demos they need as soon as they join will make things much smoother. Take these steps, and in no time your partners will be thanking you for being easy to do business with!

If you’re looking to introduce a partner program, Vartopia can help.
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