Portfolio Planning for SaaS Renewals through Partners…
How “Sticky” is your Business Value Proposition?
In our whitepaper series, “How to Engage the Channel for Successful SaaS Renewals,” we talk a lot about the importance of “stickiness,” an informal measure of engagement for both end-users and partners.
In the world of best practices, stickiness begins in the very early stages of offer development – the portfolio planning stage. Here, the offer team must make sure that the vendor’s offer includes not only a well-positioned and compelling performance value proposition for partners (i.e. form/feature/function at a price point). But it must also include an equally strategic and compelling business value proposition.
This business value proposition (or BVP) has to do a lot of “heavy lifting” for the vendor. To clarify, it opens the door to partner consideration and previews the tone of the business relationship. To be effective (i.e. differentiate the vendor and promote stickiness), the BVP must answer four key questions that partners are thinking about, but may never ask out loud:
- Firstly, is the renewals opportunity big enough for my business?
- Secondly, how much time and money will I have to spend in order to realize that opportunity?
- How good (i.e. how credible, available and relevant) is this vendor’s support?
- Finally, why THIS vendor vs. others I’m considering?
3 Characteristics of a “Best in Class” Business Value Proposition to Secure SaaS Renewals through Partners
In order to address initial partner questions and concerns, a solid BVP must:
1. Capture Partner Interest with a strong statement of financial opportunity
Vendors working SaaS renewals through partners know that the business can get lost for lack of partner interest – unless the full financial opportunity is understood and communicated. The financial component of the BVP, then, needs to include documentation of:
- Expected CLTV (customer lifetime value) of the renewal
- Incremental revenue and margin opportunity
- Ability to sell other services as “drag-alongs”
2. Focus the Partner on “Ease of Doing Business“
This section of the BVP is all about communicating the implied profitability of working with a vendor who:
- Understands the partner’s business (i.e. how partners make – and lose – money)
- Reduces the partner’s cost of working with the vendor
It includes documentation of:
- Your pricing strategy and competitiveness
- Your support offers – including tech support and training
- How well does your support map to your partners’ current level of interest, competence and confidence in the renewals business?
- Available vendor resources “behind the scenes”
- If they are needed, how smooth are the hand-offs from vendor to partner, from partner to vendor, from partner to partner?
3. Assure the Partner of Maximum Revenue Recognition
A statement of revenue opportunity is meaningless if the revenue isn’t recognized. As such, if you’re currently selling SaaS renewals through partners, you know this is an issue that frustrates you both! It’s no secret that a massive amount of renewals revenue is left behind. There is a sizeable gap between “expected renewals revenue” and “realized renewals revenue”. Why? Many partners just aren’t very good at monitoring their databases.
Therefore, if you have a SaaS renewals platform that automates database monitoring for the partner, you have a powerful component of your BVP that you can and should leverage up-front AND at every stage of the business relationship!
The Power of an Automated SaaS Renewals Platform can include such features as:
- Upcoming/current renewal opportunities presented to every partner, every day
- Ability to request and receive a quote
- Customizable views of renewals rates – e.g. by dollars/by number of contracts
- And finally an ability for partners – and vendors – to see where they are against target in each quarter (or current period) and track their improvement over time.
To conclude, credible, substantial revenue opportunity. Ease of doing business. Maximum revenue recognition. These three factors form the cornerstone of a solid business value proposition for partners selling SaaS renewals. For further reading on this and other SaaS renewals best practices, please refer to our second whitepaper in the series entitled “Best Practices for Leveraging the Channel.”