“We were finding it hard to pre-identify our best partner prospects, and our recruitment team was spending too much time researching each partner, which caused recruitment numbers to suffer. We needed better data, and we needed it delivered in a manner our reps could quickly access, assess, and close new partners.”
In 2019, one of the first autonomous breach protection companies with a fully automated attack investigation and remediation platform launched its North American channel program with the goal of recruiting, enabling, and activating the best IT services companies in the cybersecurity space. Initially, the results were positive; however, as the company continued to scale, they discovered many of their partners were not producing as expected. And, they realized the newer partners in particular were not fully engaged. After further examination and investigation, the channel team realized many of the channel partners joining their program were in fact not compatible with the company’s goals and didn’t have the capabilities needed to scale and drive revenue.
To overcome these challenges, the company enlisted a group of channel recruiters to perform extensive outreach efforts. They spent countless hours researching websites, LinkedIn profiles, and other data sources in an attempt to verify which partners had the right expertise and customer alignment and were actively producing revenue.
“We were doing well on new reseller recruitment, but we knew we had a problem activating at an acceptable level,” said their VP of Channels. “We were finding it hard to pre-identify our best partner prospects, and our recruitment team was spending too much time researching each partner, which caused recruitment numbers to suffer. We needed better data, and we needed it delivered in a manner our reps could quickly access, assess, and close new partners.”
The Process: Research and Discovery—- Building a Data-Driven Ideal Profile to Find Lookalikes
After researching the PartnerOptimizer partner discovery platform, PartnerOptimizer, and considering other alternatives, the cybersecurity company decided to sign up for the 3-month partner discovery pilot program. Within the first week, PartnerOptimizer built an ideal partner profile for the company based on a data-driven aggregated analysis of the company’s most successful partners’ profiles. Next, PartnerOptimizer used that ideal profile to build a search algorithm within PartnerOptimizer to mine for look-alike partners. The custom proprietary algorithm determined which partners were more likely to be the most receptive to outreach initiatives, so the channel team’s time could be used more efficiently. In addition, the company’s channel team was able to approve, or reject potential partners, which helped save time and reduce the risk of onboarding a partner that didn’t fit the ideal partner profile.
Each member of the company’s channel sales team was trained on the PartnerOptimizer platform so they could leverage their assigned partners’ profile data in their preparation for sales calls and recruitment efforts.
The Results: Success Rate for Setting Meetings Increased 30%+; Channel Sales Reps saved 15-30 Minutes Researching Per Partner
Within 45 days of beginning the pilot with PartnerOptimizer, the team was highly impressed with the identified channel partner matches and the breadth, depth, and presentation of data on each one. Since the first month that the company started obtaining matches with their profiles through PartnerOptimizer, the success rate for setting up meetings rose to 32%, with additional meetings and follow up continuing to result in partner recruitment and opportunity development. The alignment of the Partner Matches to the company’s product has led to higher quality conversations, which has contributed to increased satisfaction/improved results for both the channel team and the partner match companies.
“My team was spending a lot of time talking with prospective partners that they should not have been engaging with in the first place,” said the team lead. “With PartnerOptimizer, my team members can quickly decide if the partner is worth engaging or not, and, if so, how to approach them.”
Moreover, previously the channel sales reps were admittedly spending 30 to 60 minutes per partner researching their online presence and history per call. “With access to PartnerOptimizer profiles, they are now saving 15 to 45 minutes of prep time, and have more time to make more calls per day.”
In continued follow up conversations with the company, which renewed continuously after the pilot (and is still ongoing at the time of publishing), the channel team noticed a vast improvement in the quality of newly signed partners and acknowledges that the data provided within the PartnerOptimizer platform helps recruit, activate, and engage partners faster and more effectively.