B2B partnerships are strategic alliances that provide opportunities for growth and success. These mutually beneficial relationships allow businesses to expand their reach and target customers that would have previously been unobtainable. Although this seems simple, finding the correct partnerships for your company can take time and effort.
With a set process, organizations can easily align with potential partners and nurture new pipelines. Avoiding wasted resources and missed opportunities.
Here at Reveal, our goal is to make obtaining new partnerships as easy as making a cup of coffee, so to help you do just that, we've created this intro guide to managing partnership program, packed with all the tips and tricks you need to get ahead of the competition.
Partnerships come in various shapes and sizes but, generally speaking, refer to the concept of one or more separate entities joining forces to improve brand reach, market opportunity, and revenue.
Although the type of partnerships formed can differ significantly, you can put them into three main categories:
Want to learn more about the different types of partnerships and how they can be applied to your business?
Click read our post discussing the different types of partnerships in more detail.
Having a partnership manager who specializes in creating and fostering meaningful partnerships helps to alleviate the risk of them failing.
When a partnership is executed incorrectly, any potential benefits will be significantly hindered and can lead to:
However, there are ways of mitigating risks, and like always, we are here to give you the tools you need to make the process as seamless as possible.
Now that you've identified potential partners, your focus is to ensure the partnership launches successfully. Your main priority during this stage is laying solid foundations between teams and ensuring that all parties share the same vision.
Building rapport and establishing trust is often the differentiating factor between a launch that thrives and one that flops, and nobody wants a failed launch.
The nature of the business and the partnership means that the specific steps of the partnership can differ.
Yet, regardless of the partnership type or service offering, a successful onboarding process always contains the following steps.
Have you ever heard of collective intelligence?
It’s the concept that when you combine unique thoughts, opinions, and data as a business you’re collectively a lot smarter.
Or if you want to put it simply, two heads are better than one.
Scheduling regular meetings between you and your partners provide an atmosphere for shared ideas and creative solutions. When people come together to achieve a common goal, the opportunities are endless, so having open and transparent lines of communication sets to benefit everyone involved greatly.
When establishing a new partnership, standardized processes that you can quickly scale must be implemented to have even a chance of achieving a basic level of quality and performance.
During the partnership process, partnership managers have a lot to consider. Their focus must be equally spread across different stages, such as recruiting, going to market, and continuous analysis. So simplifying things makes their job much more achievable.
There are several ways to do this, but the most effective include:
Having simple and scalable systems not only reduces confusion and error but makes it easier for partners to understand and follow your processes, making them more likely to comply, engage with, and trust you.
It’s a win, win.
Decentralizing a partner program means distributing responsibilities and decision-making power among multiple individuals or teams rather than having a single centralized group in charge.
As you can imagine, this has various benefits, including:
Overall, decentralizing a partner program can ensure that it is more effective, responsive, and resilient in the face of changing business needs and challenges.
Everyone must be kept in the loop when going through a period of change, and decentralization ensures this happens.
There are many ways, but the golden rule is the more departments and parties involved, the more effective a meeting is.
Like the onboarding process, decentralizing involves different approaches for each business, but a typical framework typically consists of the following:
Although we hate to sound cliche, in this case, we really have saved the best (most important) tip till last.
You can have the best partner program in the world and complete every step noted above, and yet without a strong and accurate hold on the data, your partnership would still be highly likely to fail.
Why? Because without knowing the data, you cannot measure performance and, therefore, cannot make informed strategic decisions.
Understanding the data your partnership produces needs to go far beyond sourced and influenced revenue.
Your partnership manager must have a constant and real-time pulse on the health of your partnership program and, as a result, should be analyzing various metrics such as staff productivity, customer satisfaction, and external interest.
It's no secret that increasing revenue is a high priority of any program. However, if it becomes your primary focus, it will significantly hinder your potential to optimize your partnerships fully.
This Masterclass is for all Partnership professionals who are ready to make their account mapping practices generate tangible ROI. Learn how to (finally) start producing the revenue that partnerships mapped the right way can produce.