Being a good partner can be tough work.
Yet, many companies – including those that sell enterprise communications technologies – rely heavily on partners. At Cisco, for instance, channel partners account for 80 percent of sales or $40 billion a year. So, there’s a lot at stake in getting partnerships right.
Obviously, training partners is critical, but if you take a more comprehensive approach, where in addition to training, you support, certify, share news and perhaps even build an online community, your partners become significantly more productive. Cisco reports that partners who took advantage of their enablement platform sell two to seven times more than those who do not.
Earlier this month, I was joined by Jim Everidge, President of Rapid LD, and Caitlin Bigsby, Senior Product Manager at Saba, on a webinar to discuss partner enablement technology. Jim and Caitlin have helped numerous customers implement channel training platforms and did an excellent job complementing my research with both case studies and insights based their experience.
To sum up the webinar in one sentence: Companies can see significant growth in channel sales from a modest investment in today’s modern learning platforms. Of course, the devil is in the details, so I unpacked partner enablement into seven keys, which is the flow of the webinar.
If you have 60 minutes, I highly recommend watching the entire webinar, but if you’re like me, you just want the highlights. So, taking a cue from microlearning, I’ve pulled 30 minutes of content from the webinar, skipping the introductions, polls and Q&A sessions. Watch what interests you!
- To get a quick idea of overall content, watch the three introductory clips.
- If you are investigating a new channel enablement platform, watch all the clips.
- If you are familiar with partner training and just looking for latest ideas, watch the research and case study clips.
- If you are planning a new deployment, don’t miss Jim’s last clip on keys for a success.
- Summary of Research – What has not and what has changed with respect to partner enablement. (1:28)
- 7x Is Attainable –Cisco’s partner enablement platform’s results. (1:12)
- The Partner Journey – The 7 keys and how they fit into the Partner’s Journey. (0:44)
The Seven Keys to Partner Enablement
- Training – Key for Product and Program Knowledge (0:56)
- Case Study: Guardian Life – Jim describes the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America’s use of training to enable their channel partners. (3:30)
- Research: Training Delivery Is Changing – Caitlin and I discuss how technology is changing the delivery of training. (2:19)
- Certification – Key for high standards in product knowledge and professionalism (0:57)
- Case Study: Technology Firm – Jim describes how certification plays a major role in one company’s channel training initiatives. (1:33)
- News and Events – Key for Keeping Partners Informed (1:31)
- Community – Key for Feedback, Recognition and Stronger Ties (1:03)
- Case Study: Insurance Firm – Jim take us through how another insurance firm is using crowd sourcing and ideation in its partner community. (1:33)
- Performance Support – Key for Increasing Partner Effectiveness (1:01)
- One Stop Shop (Research)– Key for the Making Sales Enablement Platform Work. Caitlin and I discuss the importance of making training easy to access. (2:14)
- Case Study: Saba – Caitlin and Jim discuss Saba’s approach to partner enablement. (3:48)
- Program Fit – Key to Aligning with your Brand and Strategy (1:40)
- Saba’s Partner Enablement Solution – Caitlin and Jim describe Saba’s solution. (3:05)
- Keys for a Successful Partner Enablement Deployment–Jim shares several insights that will help you successfully choose and deploy a partner enablement platform. (1:42)
Does your company rely on indirect sales for a portion of revenue? If so, download Saba’s Channel Partner Training Kit now! This free resource is the perfect prelude to discovering training solutions for your channels sales program.