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As SAP continues its transformation apace, including the launch of a fresh, new, visual identity, Andrew Kisslo, Global Head of Partner Marketing, outlines his strategy for partners.

“Partners are our best asset – we need them more than ever to help us attract, grow, and retain customers of all shapes and sizes, especially in our transition to the cloud. In our largest enterprises, partners can help our existing customers understand how to move to the cloud and begin a shift to ‘clean core’ which is at the centre of our ERP strategy. For midmarket and below we need partners to attract new customers which increases our market share. With our new product offerings, partners can introduce customers to the value of SAP and why our approach is the best option in the market. 

My role exists to empower every partner across their business with SAP, to help them build business demand and attract customers to close more business. Customers have more choice than ever so partners need to differentiate themselves which is why I am so focused on this. 

Empowering partners:

Empowering partners is about enabling them with content, coaching, and guidance on how to increase awareness of their capabilities. We invest deeply in programmes designed to help partners generate demand, so they become part of any customer’s consideration phase of purchasing. For example, we have digital workshops dedicated on how to build a great value proposition which helps a partner be very clear about how they uniquely stand out. We have courses on how to become a ‘Lead Master’, where – through a series of classes – partners attain different levels of certification in how to generate their own leads. 

These courses have a large impact for partners. For example, those who go through the Lead Master course can generate well over 10,000 leads and a minimum of two sales deals within the first 12 months alone. There is a very noticeable difference in the growth of their pipeline when compared to partners who do not complete the workshop. These things can make a big difference if partners take the time to participate.   

Introducing new support from the Partner Marketing Team:

As a baseline, we’re always optimising our offerings including overhauling the Partner Benefits Catalogue. The second thing is that, in today’s digital world, we know that partners need to learn how to scale themselves through digital selling which is why we continue to invest in workshops focused on how to build a ‘social selling’ approach using marketing tactics on platforms such as LinkedIn. Finally, AI is rapidly becoming central to many customer discussions so in the year ahead you can expect brand-new support on how partners can talk about AI and SAP’s solutions which ensures every prospect knows how to learn from SAP for future innovation. I think partners should lean in now more than ever, especially with so much noise in the market which can confuse customers.”