Nobody Puts PRM in the Corner
Dirty Dancing hit its 30th anniversary last year, and continues to prevail in pop culture as a timeless classic. It seems this movie has been a major influence on both personal and professional life as its themes and quotes intertwine into our lives regularly, teaching us when to lead and when to follow. Just like in a successful dance routine, you and your partners must work together to provide a seamless, enjoyable experience for your audience and users. The best dancers can integrate their styles perfectly together, playing on the strengths and weaknesses of each other; technology is no different.
Software tools, especially your PRM and CRM, should integrate with one another. Without a user-friendly, real-time integration, your data can become siloed within different tools. When data silos develop, your team can be at risk of losing your source of truth for reporting, and departments within your company can quickly become segmented from one another. According to Dun & Bradstreet, 80% of companies report high or moderate degrees of data silos. Based on their research, Dun & Bradstreet came to the conclusion that “data silos tend to arise naturally in organizations because each department has different goals, priorities, responsibilities, and systems. Every department works in its own way, which only worsens the problem.”
When there is no single source of truth, each set of data is forced to compete with the values recorded in different programs. While you may be looking at data for the same topic, the results can look completely different because of the strategies and algorithms the softwares have in place for measurement. Both sets of data may be helpful in their own way, but if they contradict one another, problems can quickly arise. If there is more than one source of “truth”, it’s hard to determine which truth you should trust. How can you keep your results consistent to see an accurate representation of growth or decline if you’re picking and choosing what numbers are favorable?
Leading or Following
Depending on the use of the information, data should be inputted into different platforms, but it can be hard to tell what information should go where. When deciding which platform to use to measure the attribution, conversion, cost, and length of time it takes to acquire a marketing generated partner lead, think about the intended use of the software.
Before your partner is onboarded, your best practice would be to utilize your marketing technology (marketing automation) to create a form, allowing you to track how users/partners reached the content. By knowing this information, you’re able to get an accurate picture of what strategies are effective for both customers and partners. Marketing will know the cost of their investment, and channel leaders can start to measure the source of where partner inquiries are coming from.
PRM’s should work hand-in-hand with your CRM. Your PRM should be used to track partner deals, opportunities, and leads after the partner is onboarded. Any documentation, not relating to a deal, that occurs between a partner and the parent company should be housed in your CRM. When these tools work together, marketing, ops, and your channel will all have visibility into how these conversions are taking place, allowing you to successfully measure the rate at which these conversion points are happening.
PRMs have proven their usefulness time and time again. What were originally introduced as a handy fix, PRM’s have become more than just a tool. If your PRM is a stand alone solution, it’s high time to integrate with your other technologies. After all, it takes two to tango. Nobody puts PRM in the corner.