Plan Your Practice
After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:
- Design a practice focus.
- Set goals for long-term success.
- Find resources for new consulting partners with Salesforce Jumpstart.
Focus Your Practice
There’s good news and bad news here. The bad news—designing your practice focus, the premise of your business, is one of the hardest parts of your partner journey. The good news—if you take the time to focus up, you’re setting yourself up for long-term success.
First, it’s important to recognize the things that make your firm stand out. Maybe it’s your super fun and friendly sales and service people. Perhaps it’s your incredible branding. Or possibly it’s your industry expertise.
Whatever it is, think about how you can use Salesforce to harness that strength. Where is the gap in the market that your firm, and your firm alone, can fill? Remember—Salesforce is a platform, not just a CRM software. You can build all kinds of amazing business tools with Salesforce technologies, so don’t limit yourself to thinking only in terms of CRM.
Industries are a prime example of this customizability. Salesforce has several prebuilt industry verticals such as healthcare and financial services. But maybe your specialty is in another industry that doesn’t yet have a bunch of tools designed specifically for their work. Industry verticals are a great opportunity for consulting partners to meld their own expertise with the power of the Salesforce platform.
You also want to think about the types of businesses to target. Since you’re partnering with Salesforce account executives, it’s good to know how we segment our own market.
The primary selling ground for Salesforce account executives is commercial business. This category includes small businesses (1–100 employees), midmarket businesses (100–500 employees), and general businesses (500–1000 employees). Since there are so many customers with so many focus areas, there are many opportunities for consulting partners in the commercial business unit.
On the other side, we have our enterprise business unit. These companies are typically large, well-known brands that have a one-to-one relationship with a Salesforce AE. As you can imagine, the enterprise business unit is much more competitive for partners than the commercial business unit is. But if your firm is familiar with the enterprise business landscape, working with Salesforce enterprise customers is well worth your time.
Set Strong Goals
You can use a bunch of approaches to measure your firm’s success once you’ve gone to market. But before you think about that, take some time to set your own goals. How do you want to see your firm’s Salesforce partnership grow in the next year?
One way to measure your firm's success is the Trailblazer Score. This score is calculated each year on a 1,000 point scale. Depending on your Trailblazer Score, you're assigned to a Partner Tier, which gives your firm access to certain resources and discounts.
There are a number of factors that determine your Trailblazer Score. You want to set goals around increasing this score, because it's how Salesforce monitors its partner ecosystem and recognizes partners that are growing at a healthy rate.
For example, set a goal that members of your firm get 10 certifications for the year. Commit your team to achieving half a million dollars in Salesforce revenue. Setting goals for the year helps you achieve longer-term goals for your business. Check out the links in the resources to see everything that goes into your Trailblazer Score.
Jumpstart Your Business
Planning pays off big time. Take your time in the beginning to review all the planning resources Salesforce offers. One of the best stops for a new consulting partner is the Jumpstart program. It covers the partner life cycle, how to plan your practice, helpful resources, and more.
We recommend building some time into your planning phase to go through the Jumpstart materials and gain further insights into the consulting partner life cycle.