Building a SaaS Channel 101 – Part one

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Building a SaaS Channel 101 – Part one


If you are interested in developing your very own channel strategy then you know you have come to the right place. Here you can find out everything you need to know when it comes to channel marketing as well as finding out more information about some of the hurdles that you might experience when the time does come for you to get started. So what are some of the questions that we are going to be covering in this guide? Some of them include your channel strategy, such as can channel partnerships work when you are involved with SAAS, is SAAS right for you and even how you could develop the right mindset and the right strategy to try and help all of your partnerships become successful.

After all, if you want to build a profitable and consistent SAAS model then you need to understand that this can be a very complex undertaking and you will have to understand what lies ahead for you in the future in order to implement the required changes for the present. You will have to have an expert level of coordination and a strong sense of leadership as well. By the time you have worked through all of the self-help posts that are on this website, you should be able to not only master your own SAAS potential but also be more than equipped to develop your own channel program.

Getting in the Right Mindset

The first thing you need to do is take a look at the word ecosystem. You may be wondering what this means. When you look at channel marketing in the traditional sense, this can be referred to as being an ecosystem and this is the relationship that exists between technology giants such as Apple, Microsoft and their own partners. When you take a look at this situation, you may see a problem, and that is the fact that the vendor sits in the centre and they also have control over a lot of the power and the influence. You could even go as far to say that they hold the partners hostage when it comes to decisions, but this is not a true representation of how an ecosystem should work. Let’s take a look at the definition of an ecosystem, which is a series of organisms that function together in a stable environment. They promote each other’s growth, and they also have a level of mutual sustainability as well.

Company Culture

Of course, to achieve all of the above, you have to make sure that you have the right company culture. You will want to make sure that you do everything you can to develop your channel strategy and you also need to understand that the whole thing is not about you. You can’t go out there and design an ecosystem that revolves around your needs and nobody else’s, and for this reason, you need to take the time to embrace the various levels of the system itself and ask yourself, what can you do for your partners?

It’s important that you do this across all platforms of your business, and this can include your organisation from the top to the very bottom. The main reason for this is because your channel market will have a substantial influence on your go-to market and even your growth as well. Channel market just isn’t something that you can do alone and if you do manage to do it alone then you won’t be doing it successfully.

Here are some tips to help you get started.

  • Be Honest about What You Want To Do
  • Understand and Respect Who You Are Working With
  • Be Dedicated to Eliminating Conflict 100%

Common Misconceptions

So first let’s be honest about the misconceptions that a lot of people experience. These could potentially sabotage the work that you are putting into your channel so it is important that you do everything that you can to avoid any misconceptions. Sometimes you don’t know what can hurt you and you should always make sure that you are aware about what can come back to bite you.

You will want to do everything you can to make sure that you avoid any embarrassing and even costly blunders and for that reason we’ve compiled a list of the top things you need to take note of when you do start up your own channel business:

  • Your Sales Pitch Can’t Be One Size Fits All
  • You Can’t Talk To Your Partner’s Like They Are Your Customers
  • Channel Programs Can’t Offer an “Instant On”
  • 12-18 Months is a Realistic Expectation

Of course, it is also important for you to keep in mind that the vendor is there to help you and your partners to grow the business that you are working with, so you can imagine how hard it is for you to build your very own sales team who can work by your side. It could be helpful for you to get someone else’s sales team to work with you. So in order to maintain a very successful channel relationship, you need to do everything you can to keep on educating your partners and the people who you work with so they understand what you need to sell, why and even any objections that might be present. You also need to work with your channel sales team so they can help you to create the right training methods and even the right materials as well so you know that you will always have access to everything you need.

You also need to keep your partners engaged so that they can not only ensure their own success, but yours as well and this is just the foundation that you need to keep in mind when the time does come for you to get started with your very own channel and your own marketing plans. If you want to find out more, I would be more than happy to help you with your sales channels, as well as working with you to make sure that you are comfortable with the plan going forward.


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Posted on

July 18, 2017