Launch a Partner Summit They’ll Remember
Partner Summit season is upon us (actually when isn’t it partner summit season?), so we thought we would provide you with a few pointers for truly engaging your partners. Whether speaking or doing a Social Media Rally Station™ we have the benefit of seeing a lot of great partner summits. Check out our suggestions, but then we’d love your thoughts as well.
The goals of your partner summit should be to engage your partners on a more personal level, teach them about all the great program and product improvements you’ve made and hear more from partners as to what their challenges are today. These events can be time-intensive and costly, so it’s important to make it worth-while for both your company and attendees. There can be many stresses of putting on such a large scale event but following these steps will help keep you on the right path to a successful summit.
Make the Most of your Time
At best you’ve got your partners for 2-3 days. Mixing in entertainment, meals, and when they’re distracted by their emails, smart phones, and customer emergencies, you have to make the most of your time. Talking about being distracted: have I told you about the time I was speaking at a partner summit and the CTO interrupted me to let me know that their entire platform had gone down and the partners’ phones started lighting up like a 3-alarm blaze? While you have your partners as a captive audience, make sure you’re taking the time to teach them more about your products, help them launch exceptional marketing through the year, and engage them on a more personal level. Breakouts are great but can you switch things up a bit? Provide them training in a more engaging way. A hands-on demo station, training sessions by other partners, or a Social Media Rally Station™ will mix things up a bit.
Don’t Keep Up with the Joneses
Just because your partners have been to other huge events with the likes of Stevie Wonder as entertainment, doesn’t mean that’s right for you. Do a partner summit that shows your dedication and class. Have motivational speakers that will help partners to drive business growth, give partners more opportunity to speak directly with executives, and ensure that partners are invigorated and excited to drive more business with your solutions for years to come.
Drive more Engagement with Social
Now that the event is planned, how do you increase attendance or better yet engage partners who are looking on from home? Spreading the word is just as important as planning out the event itself. Creating events, posting content, and getting people to generate buzz on their profiles will help spread the word about all the great things you’re doing and show those at home why they should attend next year. Don’t forget your useful hashtag, #YOUREVENT to let people follow along.
What are other keys to a successful partner summit? Fun events, give-aways and cocktail party themes?