Need a Steady Momentum of High-Quality Leads? Look No Further Than Your Partner Ecosystem

Need a Steady Momentum of High-Quality Leads? Look No Further Than Your Partner Ecosystem

Olivia Ramirez 6 min

By Olivia Ramirez

September 27, 2023


Note: this is the latest in our Potential Revenue series. You can read the others below:



Your goal is to generate more leads. So, where do you look? In a perfect world, you can identify a new channel that generates a steady momentum of leads over time. A channel that you can set up for success early on and drive repeatable results while using comparatively less resources than traditional sales channels. 


That perfect world of Ecosystem-Led Sales is more accessible than you think. All you need to get started is one sales rep, one partner, and a little bit of second-party data (“partner data”) to ensure you’re focusing on the right opportunities with your partner. Then, repeat the sales motion with more of your sales reps until you have a self-sufficient and cost-efficient revenue-generation channel.  


Ecosystem-Led Sales (ELS) is a strategy in which sales teams look to partners in their Ecosystem and second-party data (“partner data”) to generate high-quality leads, accelerate sales cycles, and drive account expansions.


Build an ELS strategy around just one key strategic partner, and you could have an entirely new stream of leads growing in numbers throughout the year. Build a strategy around many, and your CEO and the board will be nodding their heads in approval. 


There’s billions in untapped pipeline that you could access right now, but it’s important to approach pipeline generation with partners with care. Below, we’ll share how to get started and help you identify how much revenue you could uncover with partners.   

How to Access Billions in Pipeline (Don’t Leave This Revenue on the Table)

Getting started is easy.


… You’ve likely already got a sales rep top of mind (If not, pick one you have a close relationship with who can help set a good example for the rest of the sales team through their success). 


… You’ve likely already got a partner top of mind (If not, ask your partnerships team which existing or potential partners would have the highest impact on pipeline generation, or land a new strategic partner). 


… You may already have access to second-party data ("partner data"). If not, you can get access for free. Just log into Crossbeam to see which prospects you have in common with your parters’ “customers” or “opportunities” lists. Or discover how you can pull second-party data from Crossbeam directly into your account dashboards in Salesforce, so you know exactly which partners can help influence a deal.


the account mapping matrix in Crossbeam
The account mapping matrix in Crossbeam, revealing how many prospects, opportunities, and customers you have in common with a particular partner


Crossbeam Salesforce Widget
The Crossbeam Salesforce Widget


Across a cohort of approximately 300 Crossbeam customers, we observed that there’s a total of $77.5 Billion in Potential Revenue* that their partners can help turn into Ecosystem-Qualified Leads (EQLs). EQLs are leads sourced from partners that have a high conversion rate and often turn into high-paying customers who grow their accounts


*Learn how to get access to the Potential Revenue feature in Crossbeam.


potential revenue in Crossbeam for prospects
Potential Revenue for a cohort of 300 customers using Crossbeam

There’s an additional $33.7 Billion in Potential Revenue from prospects their partners can help generate through their partners’ open opportunities, and $172 Billion via mutual prospects. 

Data from the 2023 State of the Partner Ecosystem Report
Data from the 2023 State of the Partner Ecosystem Report


Ready to get started with pipeline generation with partners? Here are the key plays: 


#1: Get a referral or a warm intro: Your partner identifies that their customer or open opportunity has a need for your product and sends the lead your way. They may offer to provide a warm intro for your AE or to help educate the lead by sharing success stories and case studies relevant to your product. This play can also include any leads from your partner’s app marketplace


A few examples of success: 

  • Freshworks sees a 50% faster time to close when sending a flurry of same-day warm intros for their partner and their partner does the same  

  • An account executive (AE) at Botify lost hope when a lead went dark, until an agency partner offered to put in a good word for him. The deal closed a couple of weeks later.

  • Ometria’s business development representative (BDR) was struggling to break into an account until their partner’s customer success manager (CSM) offered to help educate their new customer about Ometria during their customer kickoff meeting 

An AE at TalentPop observed that 40% of leads from partners booked meetings, compared to just 1% from typical leads. Of the leads who booked meetings, 50% closed, compared to the AE’s typical 24% close rate. 


Leads who book meetings


Leads who convert

Images courtesy of TalentPop 



#2: Team up for co-selling: Match your sales development representatives (SDRs) or account executives (AEs) up with their counterparts at your partner’s company. Your SDR or AE can sync up with your partner’s AE to: 

  • Learn about their prospect (e.g. their buying timeline, the top stakeholders to reach out to, their pain points) 

  • Understand their prospect’s tech stack and how to get their attention by mentioning the tools they use every day in their sales outreach 

  • Join your partner’s AE or CSM on a call to help sell your integration or joint solution, or to help educate the lead about your value proposition  

An important note: Your customer success managers (CSMs) and AEs should have strong relationships with your partner’s team before inviting your SDRs to co-sell with partners. SDRs have the highest barrier to entry since they’re more junior relative to the rest of the sales team, and your CSMs and AEs can help validate and set a good example for how to initiate your co-selling motions with partners before your SDRs participate. Read: The 5 Phases of Co-Selling for Rolling Out Your New Tech Partnership


A few examples of success: 

  • Census looks to their partners to understand how their prospects typically buy software and how they approach pricing negotiations. Using this intel, their sales team can enter every deal with more confidence, and they’ve observed a 34% higher annual contract value (ACV).

  • When a Senior Sales Manager at Spirable found out a prospect had false information about their product, their partner helped educate the prospect about their product’s value and how they differed from their competitors, and Spirable became the only vendor in the sales conversation. 

  • 60% of monthly referrals at Yotpo are influenced by partnerships.


Ready to get started? 


Check out how sales teams engage partners to generate leads and close accounts directly from their account dashboards in Salesforce. Plus, learn how Drift sends partner intro requests (PIRs) and uses the “fast follow” to engage prospects when they become a customer of their partner. 

Olivia Ramirez 6 min

Need a Steady Momentum of High-Quality Leads? Look No Further Than Your Partner Ecosystem

Grow your sales pipeline with key strategic partners, and open up a whole new channel for revenue. Leads from partners have a higher likelihood of booking a meeting and a higher likelihood of closing.

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