Salespeople, Are You Wasting Your Time With Referral Partners?

If you’re a salesperson that is bound by a territory it’s always difficult working with referral partners.  Determining what partner to spend the most time with, what accounts you can target together, and what information you can share about your common accounts becomes an uphill battle.  The uphill battle and time loss all stem from territories never lining up perfectly with your partners. 
 
Is partnering a complete waste of time?  How much time should you spend with your partners?  
 
A recent study on effectiveness of Formal B2B referral programs by Heinz Marketing and Influitive found that “Referrals convert better, close faster and have a higher customer lifetime value than any other type of lead.”  Full study: What you should know about b2b referrals (but probably don’t). 
 
Here are some industry standards: 
  •   Referral leads convert 30% better than leads generated from any other marketing channels (R&G Technologies)
  •   84% of B2B decision makers start the buying process with a referral (SalesBenchmark Index)
These stats show that yes engaging and spending time wth referral partners is worth it regardless of how much work is required to map territory data. I remember personally meeting with a potential referral partner for the first time. After we had sat across a table from each other at lunches and happy hours, trust developed and we began swapping territory lists. Prior to swapping these lists I really had no idea if this partnership was even worth the initial investment.  A typical territory list swapping involved a 3-10 page print out of an excel worksheet or pdf list of accounts. We’d both thumb through each other’s lists eagerly trying to figure out if we had any territory in common.  Although this manual process was exhausting, it was required to take a partnership from one lead to multiple leads and valuable sales intelligence.   

Each sales rep has their own way of working through territory list data.  Some will meticulously enter partners’ names into each salesforce account. Some will compile a partner excel workbook. Others just waste the list, letting it collect dust in a pile on their desk, only pulling it out when they get a quarterly call from their partner.   All of this work is repeated when turnover happens or when a company redraws territory boundaries.  
 
Statistics tell us, partnering is one of the most essential sales tools.  However, the manual nature of spreadsheet account mapping makes it the most underutilized sales tool. Here’s a way to pave the same success without the time-consuming spreadsheet work. 
 
If you want to accelerate your partner leads in a safe and controlled way – we’ve built an app just for you!  Download and start connecting with your partners.  We’ll do the territory alignment for you.  Now identifying your common accounts happens with one click making your next partner interaction strategic.  
 
 PartnerTap knows, salespeople want to sell not build and share territory lists.  Give the PartnerTap app a try today!

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