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Customer advocate

Customer advocate

Noun

[cuss-toe-mur ad-vo-kit]

A customer advocate is a devoted customer who believes in the value of your business and trusts your product(s) to be worthy of recommendation. They are willing to share their experiences with your product with others, which can greatly benefit your sales process. Customer advocates often collaborate with businesses on case studies, article posts, backlinks, and webinars.

Positive endorsement from existing customers is one of the most compelling tools a potential customer can use in a purchase decision. This makes customer advocates extremely valuable to your organization.

You may have customer advocates approach you, but more often you will have to identify them. Look for repeat customers, glowing reviews, and long-term relationships.

Example: You notice a longtime customer referring a lot of leads your way. You reach out to them and find they're super happy with your services. You ask them if they'd be interested in being a customer advocate, and you plan a webinar with them that brings in even more business. Yay!

More Partnership terms beginning with
C
Channel sales

Noun

[chan-l seylz]

Channel sales, also known as indirect sales or partner sales, are sales facilitated through third parties instead of directly through a company’s sales team. These third parties may be agencies, influencers, or distributors. This is a common go-to-market strategy amongst B2B (business-to-business) software companies.

Channel sales is often a far more efficient system for driving revenue than direct sales, since the company doesn’t have to hire a sales team. Rather, the company only pays if and when partners make sales. Typically, partners are paid a cut of the sale, so it doesn’t require the same degree of overhead investment or risk as hiring and training an inside sales team.

That being said, to unlock maximum growth potential, many companies opt to use both direct and channel sales. Since partners will likely have access to different audiences than your sales team, it’s often worth investing in both. The programs are usually complementary as opposed to cannibalistic

Example: Lavender Ltd. drove 30% of their revenue last year via channel sales, up from 20% the year before.

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Commission structure

Noun

[ko-mish-un struk-tchur]

A commission structure is how a company compensates partners based on the revenue they generate for the business. Partner programs pay partners based on the sales they close, the traffic they drive, or the qualified leads they send to the program. The commission structure defines how much a partner is paid for those actions and how much that pay increases with increased revenue generated.

Partner programs should strive to develop a commission structure that is compelling and progressive. A compelling structure with appealing rewards can help drive interest and signups for your program, and a progressive commission structure continues to adequately reward high-performing partners for their share of revenue driven. Note that commission structure usually varies between partner types; affiliates who drive leads may earn less commission per lead, whereas resellers who have more hands-on involvement in the whole sales process usually would earn more.

Example: Reid's partner program paid affiliates 15% of the value of their leads generated and resellers 35%. His commission structure then increased the share paid for high-performing partners sending many leads and closing many sales.

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