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Establish Communities to Better Engage Your Sales Partners

by Ilona Hansen  |  April 25, 2017  |  8 Comments

Listening to channel partners and becoming empathic to their needs and objections is one of the most undervalued components in partner enablement.

Sure, implementing lucrative incentives and valuable content through your partner relationship management (PRM) applications is great, but does it truly contribute to partner, agent, broker fulfilment? As a producer, manufacturer, vendor, brand maker, insurer and financial services provider, your partnership should be seen as a more than a monetarily-based rapport, but rather, a collaboration of innovation, strategy and support.

Communities provide a virtual network for people with a common agenda, cause or interest to collaborate by sharing ideas, information and resources. The value of communities for the sales partner landscape lies in its flexibility, which allows partners to join, ask questions and be advised in a rather static partner relationship management (PRM) technology environment. And it provides a competitive advantage in the race for sales partners mind share, by enhancing the partner experience.

We have identified these most common four partner community capabilities, explored use cases and have assessed their positive results when combined with PRM apps:

  • For partners who are more cooperative than competitive
  • For organizations with a larger partner environment to satisfy partner requirements
  • For organizations that have partners who may also be competitive with one another
  • For organizations that have partners who each play unique roles within a client’s ecosystem

In summary, feature and functionality enhancements in PRM applications are driving efficiencies by generally providing easier access to content and processes. However, they are not necessarily supporting the target of generating higher revenue through the channel business.

If you are interested in getting to know about best-practices for partner communities, need insights into vendors out there, providing different applications and services in this context, please have a look at this research note (full access for Gartner clients, only): Establish Communities to Better Engage Sales Partners

Category: customer-experience  partner-relationship-management  

Tags: channel-sales  indirect-sales  multitier-sales  partner-relationship-management  prm  

Ilona Hansen
Research Director
1 years at Gartner
20 years IT Industry

Ilona Hansen is a Research Director in the application research group. She is responsible for managing research in the area of customer-related technology, including salesforce automation and partnership relationship management. She more generally covers CRM in Europe. Read Full Bio


Thoughts on Establish Communities to Better Engage Your Sales Partners


  1. Ben says:

    Interesting blog about how establishing communities helps in engaging better sales partner and why networking is important. Thanks for sharing the blog.

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