Misconceptions of Co-Selling with Microsoft

Getting listed and becoming transactable on the Azure Marketplace are big accomplishments but just the start of your journey! Co-selling offers another path to increasing the pipeline beyond your own team’s efforts. It is a very collaborative engagement between Microsoft and its partner ecosystem, including ISVs like you. While it’s a path filled with potential, it’s also riddled with misconceptions. Let’s debunk these myths and outline a strategic approach for success.

 

Misconceptions:

  • Leads will come automatically (what we lovingly call “if you build it they will come”)
  • Growth is eminent, we are a managed partner
  • We are on Azure MP, now we wait for customers to rush and buy our solutions
  • We put a ton of outbound leads in the Partner Center. Microsoft will reciprocate with inbound leads
  • We met with Microsoft sales leaders/Execs, floodgates will open for our joint sales
  • We have a high ACV and we drive significant ACR, MSFT sellers will flock to our doorsteps

 

This would be a pretty magical world if all those were true, but you guessed it… It’s just not that easy! This co-sell motion isn’t a build-it-and-forget-it type of deal, it needs to be nurtured to succeed.

 

With all that being said, you might be asking yourself “is co-selling even worth it?” The answer is yes, absolutely! Even though it takes time, strategy, and team buy-in to grow a co-sell motion, there are several benefits and incentives.

 

Co-sell Benefits:

  • Attract enterprise customers with cloud commit budgets that can be used to purchase your solution
  • Differentiate by offering a faster and easier way to buy
  • Expand your brand awareness
  • Join forces with Microsoft sellers to access new deals and speed up pipeline opportunities
  • Tap into more opportunities for growth and sales success
    Attention and access to Microsoft sellers

 

Now that we have gone through the misconceptions and understand the importance of co-selling – what are you actually supposed to do to see success? In short, ISVs must be the proactive party marketing their solution on the Azure Marketplace.

 

Building a success plan:

  • Build:
    • Understand the ecosystem landscape like common acronyms (we covered in a previous blog here).
    • Determine your better-together story: What is your unique value proposition? Why should Microsoft care? Why is it relevant?
    • Create win stories & use cases – promote what’s working and share stories of success.
  • Align:
    • Educate your internal sales team: Make sure they understand the benefits and importance.
    • Build relationships with Azure PDMs: Provide them with content, and the “why”, determine a meeting cadence, and build their trust.
  • Enable:
    • Enable your internal sales team: Give them campaign details, content, and resources needed to succeed. Invisory is here to help with this process so your team is ready for success.
    • Engage the PDMs: build content that enables the Microsoft selling team. Think about a one pager, battlecards, demand gen activities, and campaigns you can co-market together.
  • Repeat:
    • Make this an easily repeatable process so reps on both sides get comfortable with it.

 

Interested in taking your Azure listing to the next level? Invisory is here to help – book some time with our experts today to get started.

Resources to help you grow & scale your business

Move beyond co-selling and into co-marketing for impact. Check out this co-marketing partner playbook to take your strategy to the next level.

On-Demand Webinar: Your guide to getting attention and driving revenue with Salesforce AEs and SEs. Watch the recording today.

Trialforce is an incredibly powerful tool that Salesforce provides to ISVs and OEMs to replicate pre-configured demo environment for your Sales team & partners.