What exactly is a hybrid SaaS channel and what can it do for your company? That depends on who you ask. I spoke with channel pro Taylor Macdonald, SVP of Channel Sales at Sage Intacct, to get his view. Taylor built an indirect SaaS channel that now contributes 50% of the company’s overall revenue. Learn the benefits of his hybrid SaaS channel model and how to live in harmony with your direct sales force.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

Here are the key lessons I learned from Taylor on Sage Intacct’s hybrid channel strategy and how they are getting the best of both worlds, direct and indirect. 

  • Share all the resources that your direct team has with all of your channel partners. That includes marketing, sales, and training resources. Treat your partners as if they are employees or colleagues of your firm.
  • Let your partners do the bulk of the services work. Sage Intacct’s partners implement between 60 and 80% of the deals that direct sold and 100% of the deals they sell.
  • You have to enforce deal registration so you don’t have two partners in the same deal and you don’t have a partner and a direct salesperson in a deal. That way you have just one sales team, either direct or a partner, focused on one deal.
  • Let your partners take down the deal on their paper and let them build an annuity by giving your partners margin on the subscription for the life of the customer.
  • Partner enablement is paramount. Taylor has a large partner enablement group that enables and coaches partners in sales, pre-sales, marketing, technical services, and professional services. Get your best partners to share their best practices.
  • Help your partners generate leads by investing in channel marketing resources and co-marketing funds. 
  • Be very selective in your recruiting and offboard partners who aren’t performing. 

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