Isn’t that everybody’s dream goal – to arrive on the market place with an innovative piece of technology and harness high international growth in only a few years? Of course it is.
But the real question is: how do we take that dream and turn it into a reality? Your PRM tool. And, while this isn’t a step-by-step that guarantees results, it’s a fair bit of insight from a guy who’s been around the block.
When we’re looking at getting our product onto the marketplace, we’re faced with two options:
- We can hire and continuously rely upon an internal sales force
- We can initially nail down our sales process with an internal sales force, but subsequently strike up partnerships with channel partners that already have established relationships with our target market.
You’ll likely find a lot of perks associated with the latter – particularly the opportunity to aggressively promote your product on an international plain. The simple reality is that you cannot do this as quickly if you choose option a.
That is, unless you have significant capital to help you overcome the geographic and other costly barriers. In short, the finances it would take to have sales people successfully covering more than one continent is astronomical and it would likely take up to ten or twenty years to reach that capacity.
However, when leveraged correctly, channel partners can overcome this obstacle and give entrepreneurs a serious leg-up on even established businesses. Yet, the key to that sentence is the “when leveraged correctly.”
Unfortunately, the prospect of a global jumpstart prompts many eager entrepreneurs to engage vendor-partner relationships aggressively at first, only to subsequently mismanage or completely ignore them.
Having relationships with channel partners is like a marriage – except, instead of one spouse, you’re faced with dozens, hundreds, or even thousands. What’s more, they may all come from different cultures, utilize different processes, and have different expectations. Reigning them all in and providing them all the support that they need to be able to sell your product can be demanding.
Using the PRM Tool
A PRM tool doesn’t do all of this for you, but makes it a lot easier to do so in a manner that is both effective and consistent. In other words, it allows you the opportunity to drive consistent behaviors and maintain the visibility you might otherwise relinquish when choosing a partner strategy over a direct sales team.
When your partners realize that you’re on top of your relationships, and willing to do the legwork to make their job easier, they’re a lot more willing to sell your product. They’re also less apt to wander away from you and into the arms of a competitor.
But back to the initial question: Can entrepreneurs go global out of the gate with a PRM tool? The answer is “absolutely.” Without a PRM tool backing them up, the road to international growth is much slower, more tedious, and less successful.
Photo credit: logicbay.com
Jason Jacobs is a serial entrepreneur, visionary leader and seasoned high growth startup CEO specializing in launching technology and technology enabled services companies. He is CEO of Channeltivity, a leading cloud based channel management software for emerging and mid-size companies, as well as Founder and President of The Verge Group, a consultancy that identifies potential and accelerates results in early stage companies.