I recently had the privilege of attending 360insight’s first Ecosystem Conference, an event that left me excited and motivated. The conference revolved around the convergence of “Channel” and “Ecosystems,” two previously distinct but now rapidly intertwining concepts that, in reality, share a common factor critical for success: trust and partner experience. Regardless of your perspective – whether you are focused on technology partners (ecosystems) or selling through partners (the channel) – it’s evident that these two elements are the keys to achieving both short-term and long-term victories.
During the conference, attendees explored a wide range of topics, from data visualization to measuring the success of ecosystems. However, the conversation consistently circled back to the significance of trust and partner experience in the world of partnerships and co-selling.
Why Trust is Vital in Co-Selling and Selling Through Partners
Trust is the foundation upon which all successful business relationships are built. Whether you are partnering with technology companies to create joint solutions or collaborating with channel partners to distribute your products, trust is a non-negotiable element. Trust reassures your partners that you are reliable, honest, and committed to their success. It encourages open communication, making it easier to address challenges and seize opportunities. In short, trust is the lubricant that keeps the wheels of partnership turning smoothly. According to Carmen Sorice III, Senior Adviser at Achieve Unite, and long time Channel guru, “trust is the foundation of every successful partnership.
Why Partner Experience is the Key Ingredient for Long-Term Success
While driving revenue is the ultimate goal of any business partnership, it’s important to recognize that a great partner experience is the key ingredient for achieving long-term success. A positive partner experience fosters loyalty and encourages partners to continue collaborating with you. When partners feel valued, supported, and empowered, they are more likely to invest in your shared vision for the future.
As Meredith Caram, President at the JS Group, stated, “you won’t get many wins without both of these.” Trust and partner experience are intertwined, and to achieve remarkable results, you need to prioritize both.
The “Give to Get” Philosophy
One of the standout moments of the conference was the endorsement of the “Give to Get” philosophy by Allen Adler, Managing Partner for Digital Bridge Partners, a seasoned ecosystem guru. This philosophy is simple but not always easy to implement. It centers around the idea that you must give value before expecting to receive it.
Implementing “Give to Get” requires a holistic buy-in from your entire organization. It’s not just the responsibility of your sales team; it encompasses every department from marketing and operations to finance and the C-suite. However, organizations that wholeheartedly adopt this philosophy build trust, create a better partner experience, and, ultimately, achieve more wins – not just random victories, but repeatable ones, which is the ultimate goal.
In essence, “Give to Get” is a mindset that encourages collaboration, fosters reciprocity, and cements trust. It’s about being generous, providing value, and investing in your partners’ success, knowing that, in the long run, it will pay off manifold.
The 360insight Ecosystem conference was a testament to the fact that regardless of your specific selling motion, trust and partner experience are the linchpins of your success, both in the short term and the long term. As we move forward in the ever-evolving landscape of channel partnerships, remember that trust and partner experience are the cornerstones upon which we can build strong, enduring relationships and achieve remarkable wins. Special thanks to all the individuals who made this conference a success, and to all the attendees and contributors who shared their insights, making the event truly worthwhile.
Abbey Abner Allan Adler Gina Batali-Brooks Kenny Browne Mathew Cagney Meredith Caram Elizabeth Chaney Massimo Canonico Keith Collins Aron Clymer Erin Crofut Jill Duncan Daniel Enekes Jared Fuller Emily Glicksman Ashley Gulick Cindi Johnson Scott Krynock Terence Leach Juliane Little Jay McBain Patrick McCaffrey Isaac Morehouse Bryn Nettesheim Jonathan Reese Chris Samila Carmen Sorice III Cody Sunkel David Ward Tom Williams Raegan Wilson, MBA