Partner Recruitment
Technology partner
Service partner

How do you choose which technology partners are a good fit for your business?

7 Answers
Maurits Pieper avatar
Maurits Pieper
Dixa Head of Partnerships
Some* factors to consider: - Use case of a possible integration and what value it can provide to existing customers and new prospects. - What gap does the partner fill in our product. Are we going to build anything similar internally? - What overlap do we have from an ICP, revenue, region and account perspective? - Is this tech partner relevant just from a product perspective or can it be used to help co-sell, co-market or assist with retention of existing customers? Always important to find the healthy balance of variety tech partners with similar services/value. e.g. partner with a variety of QA tools at the start but too many. Too many options can spread partner momentum too thin and can act as a blocker for your internal team to feel confident selling partners within their roles (choice overload/paralysis).
Daniel Dawson avatar
Daniel Dawson
Aircall Sr. Partner Marketing Manager
What partners can provide value to what your customers need? What tech partners can fill gaps where your product is weaker or missing? It depends on your business and product strategy and that will determine where tech partners come into play. Tech partners are inherently different from affiliate or reseller partners (often referred to as channel). While co-selling and referrals will come from tech partnerships, think about the core need that's coming from your customers, your target audience, which audiences you want to reach 1-3-5 years from now etc that a tech partnership can solve. This is also thinking about your partnerships proactively and in an outbound mindset. If you have an open API and provide support to developers, you'll find that there's also the opportunity for inbound integrations being built and your own business being that central node in the ecosystem. Which ecosystems does it make sense based on your customer pain points and business opportunity to be a part of? What type of ecosystem could your business lead or be a central node in?
Christiannah Oyedeji avatar
Christiannah Oyedeji
AWeber Director of Partnerships
The short answer is: align partner selection around your ideal customers, IPP, and KPI. When I am identifying potential partners for outreach I first build a list while considering the following: Reviews of specific tools your customers use outside of your platform The personas/or use cases your company serves most effectively. What tools/platforms are these folks using? What workflows could be streamlined with an integration? As the program grows take a step back and look at the types of tools your successful customers use (ie CRMs, Website Builders, Communications Tools, Hardware, Sales Automation). Find all the major players within these areas. Once I have an initial list together I begin to gather information to evaluate each potential partner’s alignment with my team’s mission, values, and goals. I use a simple scorecard that has each of the IPP characteristics and requirements outlined — each value is weighted based on its importance to the team. Willingness and ability to build are line items on this scorecard by the way. The higher the total score, the more tightly aligned that prospect is to our partnerships program. More highly aligned partners are the relationships that are typically more likely to succeed, so they are prioritized for further exploration. It is valuable to review these evaluation metrics from time to time … things change after all. Also, take a look back at existing partners and determine which partners are helping you meet goals consistently. Find or grow more of these partners.
Leeran (Lee·Ron) Schwartz avatar
Leeran (Lee·Ron) Schwartz
Celigo Strategic Alliances Manager
This depends on what we are seeing in the field. I think we all tend to gravitate towards partnering with the most popular tech apps, thinking that those partnerships will naturally bring in more business because they are deemed the "most used" apps, but that isn't always the case when it comes to what you find within your customer base's tech stack. I tend to try to document the types of tools found in our customer's tool box, figure out what those tools could possibly connect those tools to, and then partner with those companies.
Kelly Sarabyn avatar
Kelly Sarabyn
HubSpot Platform Ecosystem Advocate
I would look at: what customers are requesting for integrations, what product features are missing from your product and could be filled by partners, what the partner is willing to invest technically, what the partner is willing to invest on the GTM side, what the partner is willing to invest to support and upgrade the integration, the quality of the partner product, the number of shared customers, the number of shared prospects, and the cultural and brand overlap with the partner.
Margot Mazur avatar
Margot Mazur
HubSpot Manager, GTM Strategic Partnerships
I look at a few things: - How many customers does the partner have? How many people on their email list/social channels. This is basically getting a sense of their reach and how established they are in the market. - How many joint customers do we have? Who is their audience? Are they aligned with ours? - Do they have access to marketing resources? Do they speak in a similar voice and tone as us? - How do they approach building integrations? Security? Updates and support? - What is their vision for the future of their business? Where are they going? - Why should we prioritize this partner? Is their solution/integration something our customers are asking for? This will give you a really good sense of the partner and how you might work together.
Franz-Josef Schrepf (FJS) avatar
Franz-Josef Schrepf (FJS)
Hopin Head of Strategic Partnerships
Easy: are there joint customers? If yes, who and how many? Over the past 3 years, I've found this to be the single biggest determiner for the success of a partnership. "Build it and they will come" can work, but it's a gamble. You want assurance that when you build the integration, somebody will use it. Similar for service partners and agencies: if they have happy joint customers, it means they a) know how to provide services for your product b) likely have a lot more customers who fit your ICP. Tools like Crossbeam and Reveal allow you to measure customer overlap before you commit to an integration. Joint customers are table stakes.