What do you get when you combine the industry's most advanced user engagement platform with the global leader for incentives and rewards? The answer - a game changing solution that has the potential to revolutionize the way enterprises manage and motivate their entire ecosystem at any level of scale.
We are entering the era of the ecosystem - with partner-led growth now arguably the single biggest opportunity for scale. You have been hired to make this happen at a company with huge growth potential.
Well beyond the core group of partners who are currently delivering solid revenue, you know there are different types of companies out there that could help deliver significant growth if properly engaged and motivated to do so.
You can even map this all out on paper - building a great plan on how you could fully maximize opportunities with your resellers, tech partners, consultants, influencers, referral partners and more. You know the solution to driving engagement with these companies has to be automated and scalable and that you need to deliver a great experience that makes it easy for them to do business with you. You are excited and ready to get started on the new strategy.
But how to execute?
Beyond the talent of you and your team, it’s clear you are going to need technology to help. Traditionally partner portal software would seem to make sense. But if you dig a little deeper you’ll see these have largely been coded around traditional channel reseller use cases and have rigid, out-of-the-box features to handle processes such as deal registration, content co-branding, and partner training and certification. Maybe suitable for some partners but increasingly not for many, many others..
- Is it realistic you are going to deliver game-changing results using traditional portal solutions?
- Is it realistic you are going to find all the tools you need from a single vendor?
- What happens if you want to utilize cutting-edge new ecosystem technology like Crossbeam or use the SaaS collaboration and productivity tools you already invested in - how do they fit into the picture?
Maybe you build something yourself to create the experience you need? If you are already running Salesforce CRM you know it’s possible to build great portal experiences using the Experience Cloud, plus integrate and visualize data through acquired platforms like Mulesoft and Tableau. Great in theory - but the big question is do you want to be responsible for designing, building and maintaining such a platform yourself over the next 3-5+ years?
So maybe we need to think differently about this challenge?
One of my favorite sayings of all time comes courtesy of Woody Guthrie
“Any fool can make something complicated. It takes a genius to make it simple.”
Digital engagement works best when this principle is followed. Look at the examples that are proven beyond doubt in our consumer lives - Twitter, Facebook/Instagram, LinkedIn, etc., billions of daily users all interacting with other users on a global scale, on apps that are easy to learn and great to use.
When you really think about it, these are all ecosystem orchestration companies. The key to their success has been to find a way to truly automate engagement at a huge scale. They all share the same common design principles:
- A frictionless, highly personalized experience on any device
- Profile data created, managed and updated by each active user
- The majority of content and communications created and published by the users of the platform, directly within the app
- Delivery of third-party content, promotions and rewards automatically presented to the user based on intelligent targeting
- Analytics and data science at the core of everything
Yet when it comes to b2b portal engagement we are often guilty of losing sight of the principles that truly drive adoption. We tend to prioritize features and functions over user experience and usability. We often over complicate and over burden the user without really thinking about the experience from their perspective. We rarely use data to drive decision making.
So, is there a better way?
Hello Ecosystem Orchestration
More than five years ago the team realized that the old ways weren’t working. Legacy solutions or custom-built partner portals were no longer delivering on the vision of an integrated system for all channel operations. We rebuilt our platform from the ground up to focus exclusively on the ecosystem user engagement, including a major focus on “consumerizing” the experience. Our goal was to create the same high-impact, user-centric experience that was becoming the standard in our personal lives, just within a b2b context.
360insights were busy establishing themselves as the key player in the Channel Incentives and Rewards arena - bringing together the tools and talent to deliver on the vision of incentives automation across multiple verticals.
The combination of these two projects creates significant opportunities for organizations looking to move to the next level of ecosystem-driven success:
Now Picture this...
Let’s go back to that ecosystem map you built out on paper. You understand the segments of your ecosystem, you’ve mapped out their wants and needs and are ready to put your plans into action. You are firmly in the ecosystem growth business, have the necessary executive support and are ready to go!
This time around there is a clearer option of what to do next. Through the acquisition of Webinfinity, 360insights has created 360ecosystems - the only solution purpose-built to help ecosystem orchestrators engage any type of user at any level of scale. By combining this technology with the ability to drive behavior based on rewards and incentives related to engagement and other key performance indicators (in a single platform) you can also invest in the very specific behaviors that will drive success with the key segments of your ecosystem.
Here are a few examples:
Points-based Partner Programs
Traditional ‘VAR programs’ based on tiers and capabilities are losing relevance for the vast majority of our ecosystem members. Implementing a dynamic program that enables highly personalized engagement with different partner types – together with consistency in measurement through the issuance of point-based rewards is the new ecosystem opportunity.
360ecosytems enables you to use points to reward the performance of your partners and the engagement behavior of the individuals within their organizations meaning you can specifically motivate different behaviors that will comprise overall ecosystem success.
Driving and rewarding influencer behavior with any kind of entity is a major opportunity in the era of the ecosystem. Maximizing the relationship with anyone connected to your business is key - be it a referral partner, an independent consultant, a tech blogger, institutional investor or in fact anyone who can help move the needle in the growth of your organization.
360ecosystems enables you to recognize the differences in personas and needs of your different ecosystem influencers- not only providing them with simple and easy experiences to better engage with your company but also the ability to reward them appropriately. It may work to pay an opportunity referral fee to a sales partner but be totally inappropriate to pay an independent consultant for the same! The ability to recognize these differences and engage different influencers appropriately is a key aspect of effective ecosystem orchestration.
With over a third of industry revenue predicted to go via marketplaces it’s critical that your organization can orchestrate and support the development of the strategies that will maximize this opportunity within your ecosystem.
There are significant benefits in developing private marketplace opportunities (think partner locator 2.0) whilst also helping your partners understand and capitalize on their opportunities within other key marketplaces operated by others.
360ecosystems enables you to orchestrate the partner to partner collaboration, structured workflow and rewards to promote and motivate all appropriate marketplace motions within your organization. Orchestrating this behavior at scale is almost impossible to do without the personalized, intelligent engagement and enablement of all concerned. 360ecosystems gives you the structure and control to do this without complexity or code.
Customer Engagement and Advocacy
Traditional PRM systems and partner portals often overlook the fact that customer experience and success is everything. Without putting the customer at the center of all initiatives we often lose sight of the real goal at hand and focus more on the operations and interactions with just the partners themselves.
360ecosystems not only recognizes the key importance of the customer but also engages them directly. By providing customer portals and client success workspaces you can provide your customers with everything they need to interact with your company but also connect them to the relevant partners and solutions to maximize their investment in your products.
And even better- if your customers love you they become another type of influencer – let them tell your story through writing reviews, creating content and recommending you to others they deal with day to day.
Effective enablement and engagement of your team is critical to every aspect of your go-to-market strategy. And we are not just talking channel employees- ecosystem orchestration is a team support that should involve every function in your business.
360ecosystems enables you to provide personalized workspaces for partner managers, sales, marketing, product and engineering teams, operational staff, executives and any other department and role in your business. You can even extend engagement to people who have not yet joined your company through the prospective employee portals and onboarding workflows.
Traditionally employees have been locked in the silos of intranets and sales enablement tools with little ability to interact and engage with others in the overall ecosystem. 360ecosystems totally changes the game in this regard, providing your employees with the visibility of external relationships but also the ability to engage any entity through integrated workflow or the creation of digital experience to support partners and customers at scale.
There are a myriad of different ways you can fully maximize an orchestrated ecosystem – be it engagement with board members, suppliers, potential investors, or industry analysts to name but a few.
360ecosystems enables you to easily engage with any kind of entity that’s important to your business – all through simple, no-code configuration of experiences that connect the right person to the right experience at the right time. Take a look at our use case explorer for some more ideas!
And even better
For your ecosystem members (internal and external) every experience for every ecosystem member is delivered in a single, highly personalized user interface that feels like using Netflix. All without writing any code or asking IT to go and build anything.
After more than two decades trying to crack the code of frictionless partner engagement, I am proud to finally say that the combination of technologies and methodologies offered by my new company can truly deliver on the vision of end-to-end ecosystem engagement management and orchestration on any device, anywhere in the world!
For ecosystem professionals serious about embracing the opportunity ahead, we are here to show you how…
Learn more about 360insights go-to-market portal here, or discover more about 360ecosystems by reading our eBook - Ecosystem Orchestration has landed and is here to stay.