A Modern Way to Manage the Modern Channel

Partner ecosystems are very different than they were just 10 years ago.  The channel is expanding to the point that potentially anyone, including your customers, could be a channel partner. This creates an awesome opportunity for SaaS partnerships. Yet at the same time, it is a huge challenge to manage such diverse partner types that require different incentives and different compensation models.

This week’s guest is Bryn Jones, founder and CEO of the channel tech company Partnerstack. We discuss how Partnerstack was created to recruit, connect and manage this modern partner ecosystem.  Learn about channel trends and how you can make SaaS partnerships more profitable and drive faster growth through multiple types of partners.


Making SaaS Partnerships More Profitable
  • Building successful SaaS Partnerships takes time. Develop and roll out a step-by-step playbook for what you want to accomplish over a two-year period.
  • Consider all the different partner types that you could leverage in your partner ecosystem, including developers, influencers, resellers, affiliates, and customers.
  • For each partner type, define partner personas (ideal partner profiles) the same way that marketing defines buyer personas. Then find 10 channel partners that fit that persona for one partner type.
  • Work closely with that group of partners to show results in the first three to six months. Then move on to another group.
Building Successful SaaS Channel Programs
  • The channel has changed drastically, but vendors still often get stuck on one model. Run A/B testing with different incentives and business models, just like marketing A/B tests email campaigns. And give your partners options on their incentive structure.
  • The channel is becoming centralized. Bring your various channel programs such as reseller, alliance, and cloud into one flexible program and one management tool.
  • Channel leaders need to be heard at the board level where the return on investment and elevation of the channel as a profession should be discussed.


The biggest trend I have seen in the channel is that it is beginning to centralize. Many programs that were run independently are now starting to come together. -Bryn Jones @bryncdn Click To Tweet The best thing people can do is poll your partners and figure out what they want and give them different options. -Bryn Jones @bryncdn Click To Tweet We are all going to benefit, and the customer is going to benefit in the end, by elevating the knowledge and capability of the channel for SaaS companies. -Rob Spee Click To Tweet


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