Get to know your partner’s reputation before you commit
If you are picking partners to help influence your target buyers, how much does word of mouth matter in today’s HR marketplace? Turns out it depends on who’s doing the speaking, according to fisher VISTA’s new Buying Trends Report.
The opinions of peers are “very important” to 46% of buyers of HR products and services—but this percentage drops to 28% regarding the opinions of analysts and influencers. This could explain the growing popularity of crowdsource review sites like TrustRadius and G2Crowd. However, when the report combines participants’ “very important” and “somewhat important” responses, the numbers pretty much even out at 96% for the opinions of peers and 91% for the opinions of analysts and influencers.
If you’re targeting larger companies as buyers, you’ll want to know that Presidents, CEOs and VPs find quite a bit of value in analysts. According to fisher VISTA this may be because the C-suite has more access to analysts and are more likely to have personal relationships with them. Executives are more likely to have access to analyst reports, which often are expensive and can be beyond the purchasing authority of non-executive buyers.
If you are focusing your solution stack (your products and your partner’s products) at the SMB companies, you’re probably better off focusing on crowdsource sites since the SMBs typically can’t afford, or won’t spend the money on, the analysts reports. Not to mention most analysts only focus on the larger, more expensive systems designed for larger companies. Why? There’s 10-20,000 HR Tech companies in the world and they have no way to track all of them!
Also worth noting: when sizing up your current or future partners, their brand reputation is the single most important factor that influences the purchasing decisions of HR buyers (98% very/somewhat important), even topping your rapport with buyers and the choices made by other companies. However, the importance of brand familiarity varies by product category; see the report for details.
Clearly, brand reputation and word of mouth still carry tremendous weight in the HR marketplace. One of the best ways you can improve both is by co-marketing your HR tech offerings with partners and peers. For instance:
- Consider co-hosting webinars to attract a wider audience;
- Instead of presenting solo at industry conferences and customer events, create roundtable discussions with your partners and trusted influencers;
- Partner up on trade show booths;
- Write joint press releases and pitch your collective expertise to journalists seeking subject matter expertise.
If you’re interested in gaining additional insights into HR buying trends, be sure to read the fisher VISTA report. And if you’d like to learn more about the tremendous potential of HR technology alliances, contact us.