If you want to make strategic co-selling a primary revenue driver, building connections with your partner’s field teams is critical.
Microsoft perfectly explains the benefit of co-selling: “co-selling with partners typically results in a larger sale on average than those sold independently, which incentivizes sellers and partners to work with each other to identify synergies and join forces.”
This is a half-truth. Co-selling does deliver larger sales, but companies are missing out on the gold mine that strategic co-selling could unearth. For the most part, co-selling hasn’t evolved much since the mid-90s and early 2000s. As a result, channel teams are co-selling but never reaching their full revenue potential.
Co-Selling Today is a Reactive Process
In its current form, co-selling, is a reactive process. Channel manager A has to connect with Channel Manager B, who then play’s rep to rep matchmaker. This process doesn’t foster the relationships that strategic co-selling requires to be your primary revenue driver.
Sales teams need to meet each other and build the same types of relationships their channel teams are building. Salespeople should be relationship building and collaborating around shared accounts before opportunities present themselves, and act more proactively.
The best salespeople understand this and try to build relationships with sales reps they know and trust. These relationships are key to the success of the channel because they lead to more opportunities and more wins. However, field teams don’t need to wait to be matched up by their channel managers to build these relationships. They can build trust with reps themselves if they have the right channel insights and the right sales tool.
Moving from Reactive to Strategic Co-Selling
It’s time to unleash sales teams to meet each other prior to opportunities and deals being worked. We need to enable sellers to build trustworthy relationships early so that co-selling becomes second nature. Instead of sellers being matched up by their channel managers, they are empowered to bring in a trusted partner that they already know.
It is impossible to have this type of synergy between field teams with this current co-selling paradigm. In order to facilitate strategic co-selling, channel teams and field teams need to have an automated platform that gives them the vision they need to build these relationships.
Teams can see who owns what account at their partner company and communicate directly with one another. This way channel managers can focus on building stronger relationships with c-level executives at their top partner companies.
Make Strategic Co-Selling a Primary Revenue Driver
To make a really profitable co-sell partnership, it is important to move to a proactive model. Channel managers should not be spending so much time and effort quarterbacking co-sell motions. Instead, field teams need to synergize with one another and rally around deals together. This strategic approach removes the bottleneck of channel managers allowing your sales teams to become your primary revenue engine.