Looking to recruit partners for the long term? How can you make sure your channel partner recruitment strategy is working? How do you know if you will be a good fit for one another? With mobility, technology and access to recruitment resources, answering these questions is easier than ever. So why are you still having trouble narrowing your list of potential recruits or finding great fits? We weren’t sure either, so we asked the partner recruitment expert.
Carlos Blanco, Managing Director of Pigs on the Roof, introduces us to a recruitment strategy that will help you narrow that list of potential recruits to a short quality list, rather than just one big mess. “Cleaning up lists of potential partners can be time consuming. It’s not that these partners are bad ones necessarily, but rather that they aren’t a good fit for your program or you are missing something and aren’t connecting with them in the right way. But you might be missing out if they are selling millions of a competitor’s product.”
Let’s start by looking at a capacity calculation. This is a fundamental activity that should be done before any recruitment activity takes place. The purpose of this activity is to determine the number of partners actually needed. There are other factors to account for too, such as produce lines, customer buying preferences, geography, types of partners, and understanding that not all partners are equal; but let’s begin with this basic “Capacity Calculation” to get you started:
Remember that this calculation is just numerical, only showing how many partners you need and does not say anything about the “right” partners needed.
Got your number of partners needed? Great! Now we can start the funneling process to target potential partners.
Here’s What You Need to Do:
Target: Define the types and number of partners you need
Engage: This is critical! Pick up the phone and reach out to the right people, contact those partners that are the best fit – sell value proposition: your company, solutions and programs
Manage: Maximize the value. Actively work with and support those partners that can yield great results for you.
Finding the right partners begins with taking input like your products, customer targets and markets you want to enter, among other variables. Historically, this process yields roughly 5%, in terms of a prioritized list of partners that match your ideal partner profile—i.e., those you want in your program. Let’s start!
1. Create a list:
Start with roughly 20,000 records that you rent, buy, build, or any combination of these.
Your list is probably pretty long now- let’s get it down from ~20,000 to about 1,000 prioritized partners for engagement, with a goal of 100 partners to end up recruiting.
2. Review this list:
Check any quality issues with the list and delete any bad records i.e. duplicates, no company name, etc.
Start to collect basic and profile data via the web. You can also add specific project data.
The best and most complete entries of those partners profiled.
This is the final target list according to projects, engagements, etc. and also servers as input for the engagement phase. Let’s look into this in more detail:
Determining Partner Quality
These are the how’s and what’s, and will allow you to see if these potential partners are in line with those qualifications and qualities you want. After this step, these are the contacts that will meet all criteria and are ready to be contacted.
What they sell:
- Custom software or hardware products, cloud services, components and accessories? This is their business model; push capabilities versus pull requirements.
How they sell:
- Is it outbound or inbound?
- Field sales?
- Store front?
Who they sell to:
- Enterprise, vertical, specialty, SMB.
Where they sell:
- Are they selling locally? Regional? Single or multi-country? Globally?
Their relative size:
- How big are they as a whole? How big are they for you versus your competitors? How big are they in the market for the product or segments of interest?
So what do we get out of this funneling process? Historically, there will be 1,000 or fewer ideal contacts at the end of this process. Sounds much better than the 20,000 random or so that you started with, huh? Great!
Interested in better engaging and managing your new partners? Check out next week’s blog post!
The post Channel Partner Recruitment Challenged? Learn from the Experts How to Recruit Partners for the Longterm appeared first on Channel Maven Consulting.