Creating and scaling a partner network can make the difference for many SaaS companies in their growth efforts or to penetrate certain markets. But the channel partner recruitment process may be proved to be more complex and harder than many channel developers think.
Starting from the basics, similar to targeting end-customers, you have to identify who the ideal partner is. To achieve this, there are some indicators to help you find what the ideal channel partner looks like. First, you have to consider the markets that you want to recruit your partners, even if your mission is to recruit partners globally you have to prioritize the countries or regions.
Another good indicator is to reach out to channel partners that already sell products that your solution integrates with. These companies not only are already active and have a sales process established and a customer base but also it’s easier for these organizations to offer complementary products to upsell their customers. Also, targeting companies that sell on specific industries is a great indicator for your ideal partners. These companies operate in specific segments of the economy so they know how to add value to certain customers.
The company size of the channel partner can play a role when it comes to committing resources to actively promote and sell your solution or cover the demand you have generated. Therefore, depending on your end-customers, if you are targeting small or mid-sized companies or enterprise level organizations, you have to take into account the size of your partners as well. Finally, after you have narrowed down you list you have to identify the right person to get in touch. In very small or small companies it is usually the CEO or the CTO that are taking these types of decisions when it comes to partnering. In larger businesses you may find a vendor management role who is your best option to discuss about a potential synergy.
After you have identified the right company and person there are a couple of things you can do to start engaging with them. You can create an email sequence to start booking meetings with potential partners or get in touch via social platforms like LinkedIn. These platforms also work to build awareness by joining relevant groups, like ours at IT Channel Partners, but do not overdo it in promoting your partner program. There are also many channel partner events that you can attend to connect with people working in the channel and also explore new market trends.
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