There’s no way to build a company alone. In the same way that founders could never reach their goals without sales, marketing, customer support, R&D, and HR teams, one company standing alone won’t get half as far as one that invests deeply in connecting with other companies in its space.
That’s why savvy companies invest in partnership teams and partner programs. Partner marketing teams can help create deals between companies to increase both of their reach with activities such as co-marketing, lead sharing, special offers, and more. Product partnership teams help create connections between complementary products — whether it’s integrations between products, add-ons, or to ultimately create a superior experience for customers.
Partner relationship management (PRM) is a key part of growth for scaling businesses in many industries, and teams who have built a partnership program know how quickly spreadsheets and manual outreach become too much to handle.
What is Partner Relationship Management (PRM)?
Partner relationship management is a business growth tactic where companies team up with strategic partners that share a mutual audience, then track sales and affiliate outcomes from cross-promotional efforts.
Partner teams seek out companies willing to collaborate, set bi-directional expectations between the company and the partnering organization, create contracts, and follow the performance of the partnership to make sure it’s still mutually beneficial.
It’s a lot of work, and often, the best partner teams are great at walking the line between being diplomatic and ensuring their company is getting what it was promised.
What is Partner Relationship Management Software?
PRM software helps companies manage partner programs or affiliate programs and usually includes a partner contact record, document management, analytics/reporting, sales details, campaign tracking, pipeline and deal management, branded asset access, and integrations with other marketing and sales software.
Partners are critical in growing your business. If you have a product that is complementary to another product, your teams can work to sell your products together — benefiting both parties and growing your reach.
Having great partnerships means leveraging the brand reach, marketing power, and sales teams of many other companies — and collaborating with them so both your companies can grow and scale together. Especially early on in a company’s journey, partners can be the key to massively expanding your customer base and securing the means to keep growing your business.
Let's take a look at these PRM software options to find one that helps you launch or expand your partner program. Before investing in a new PRM solution, make sure that the platform you choose integrates with your existing systems and tools — like your CRM and marketing software.
About: Crossbeam lets you collaborate, co-sell, and co-market with every company in your partner ecosystem. It’s a data escrow service that finds overlapping customers and prospects with your partners, while keeping the rest of your data private and secure, which lets you know right off the bat if a partnership is worth pursuing.
Crossbeam also helps you generate highly qualified overlapping leads without digging through spreadsheets, and you can co-market to common leads, prospects, and customers from right in HubSpot.
Best for: Companies looking to expand their reach at the top of the funnel and get actionable insights from their PRM platform — Crossbeam highlights which partnerships are the standouts and helps you track and attribute accurately when partnerships generate deals.
About: Reveal lets marketing and sales teams multiply their win rate up to 3X. Reveal connects HubSpot CRM data into their partner ecosystem, helping teams to identify and convert strategic leads. The system shows the overlaps between your leads, prospects, and customers and that of your partners, all easily accessible on one screen, and alerts you when a deal comes through thanks to your partnership's work.
Reveal also helps teams identify new partner opportunities and add them to your ecosystem, taking some of the heavy networking lift off of your partnerships team.
Best for: Companies looking to get their partner ecosystem started and growing, and who want to be able to show proof of each partner-influenced deal easily.
About: Allbound is a self-service e-learning platform designed specifically to onboard and train partners to work with your company. You can share materials training, sales and marketing collateral, deal registration, and opportunity management, and follow the entire partner lifecycle from onboarding to deal registration. With an analytics dashboard, channel managers can find out which partners are the most successful, and which ones need more support or guidance.
Best for: Companies onboarding many partners at a time who want all partner collateral and data available in one place. Allbound offers unlimited users in the portal.
About: Kiflo is a modern Partner Relationship Software (PRM) made to support every kind of partnership, including affiliate, referral, and reseller partner tiers. It’s a platform made to help scale brand awareness through strategic partnerships by helping your team train and onboard new partners, plus doing lead tracking and attribution all in one place.
Using Kiflo with the HubSpot CRM, users can:
Nurture their partner program contacts
Organize and manage partners
Conduct streamlined onboarding, asset management, and communication
Set up lead or deal attribution and reporting
Create customizable partner portals
Manage content in real-time to keep all partners aligned and up-to-date
Best for: SMBs exploring several types of partnerships, from affiliate marketing and links to referral programs to reseller platforms, as well as traditional company partnerships. Kiflo is ideal for SMBs looking to create, streamline, or scale their partner programs, and is easy-to-use for teams with any level of technical expertise.
About: Impact.com’s platform is a seamless way to automate and manage partnerships and track and attribute partner value as leads advance through the sales funnel. Impact.com lets your team understand the incremental value each partner drives at every stage of the funnel, and you can set up automatic payouts when a partner pulls through with a deal.
Best for: Companies looking to keep a close eye on the performance of each partner and adjust contracts and compensation accordingly. Also, companies looking to grow their partner network and find new specialists.
About: PartnerStack is a partner relationship management system that helps B2B SaaS companies promote, manage, and scale their partner programs, from affiliates to referrals to resellers. In the platform, partner teams can automate partner onboarding, training, rewards, and payments, while also keeping an eye on how the program, and each partner, is performing.
PartnerStack allows users to manage different types of partner programs, including Referral, Affiliate, and Reseller, and provides access to 65,000+ partners in their marketplace.
Best for: B2B SaaS companies, as PartnerStack is the only PRM built specifically for this segment of businesses.
About: Channeltivity is an out-of-the-box, self-serve PRM Solution made for tech companies which takes partners through the entire process: it simplifies deal registration, MDF requests, channel lead distribution and management, training, and co-branded collateral through a single, powerful Partner Portal. This platform also has two-way data sync with HubSpot.
Channeltivity seeks to make partner management easy with a simple user interface, comes pre-configured with partner relationship best practices, and helps anyone get started right away without significant training. For HubSpot users, the Channeltivity integration with HubSpot is a flexible, powerful connection that you can set up in minutes to scale up partner marketing efforts in a more organized way.
Best for: Technology companies with a channel program looking for a quick solution to manage partners. Channeltivity is built for teams who want everyone to be able to view the details and performance of your partner relationship management work.
About: Partner Deals Portal isn’t a Partner Relationship Management system in itself, but it’s a connection between existing PRM systems and your HubSpot CRM. Any PRM can operate like a seamless extension of your CRM in HubSpot, allowing you to track the success of every partnership, all the overlap in your leads, contacts, prospects, and customers, and see which partnerships are generating the most deals.
Partner Deals Portal is a powerful app built to work with HubSpot through a rich API integration, and you can set it up in a few hours. With this app, the HubSpot CRM can also act as your PRM, giving you the ability to use workflows, list segmentation, and other features to manage partner programs without using any additional tools.
Best for: Companies with existing PRMs who don’t want to switch to a new one but want to connect their partnership information to HubSpot. Or, channel partners who want to give partners access to their Deals portal only — giving them visibility into the entire pipeline, an easy-to-use registration portal, and all of your partner deal information.
About: PartnerPortal.io is a self-service, plug-and-play platform for managing partnerships. It can be set up in as quickly as 15 minutes, and helps your partnerships team streamline new partner registration and lead submission directly into HubSpot.
Best for: Small, or early-stage growth companies and startups looking to build out their partnerships ecosystem at a lower budget.
One PartnerPortal.io and HubSpot user writes, “The integration is simple and quick - it has great promise. The platform is very easy to use and has clear UI/UX. Overall, it’s a fantastic value for the money. We’re using PP.io to manage all of our partners with our software company.”
About: Impartner PRM helps you streamline the process of growing your partner ecosystem while ensuring each partnership is as lucrative as possible, whether you are managing thousands of global partners, or just starting out. Impartner is an out-of-the-box solution that automates onboarding with triggered workflows for partnership applications and approvals, and ensures partners are thoroughly trained.
Impartner PRM’s Deal Registration solution builds partner trust and rewards loyalty, while Impartner Leads lets you intelligently assign and delegate leads and track closure rates and ROI. All partner deals and leads sync with your HubSpot CRM, and Impartner provides partner management best practices and channel expertise right in the product.
Best for: Companies at any stage in the maturity and complexity of their partner program looking to extend the reach of their partner ecosystem. Partners can personalize and co-brand content and collateral that’s easily accessible by all, and the News on Demand and Social on Demand features help templatize your co-marketing efforts.
About: Channelyze is an end-to-end PRM platform built for multi-tier transactions that enables vendors, distributors, and resellers to collaborate using multiple layers in the ecosystem. This makes it easier for partners to manage their leads, register deals, and handle renewals — with full visibility for all vendors across the entire channel. Additionally, leads and deals that partners bring in are logged in Channelyze and immediately reflected in HubSpot.
Best for: Companies and partner teams who conduct business indirectly via distribution or resale looking to get granular in their tracking and categorization of partner leads. Channelyze lets you name HubSpot deals based on deal value, transacting partner, end user name and deal type.
About: CompanyOS looks to create a partners hub for all of your company’s current partnerships. They also solve attribution woes: leads can be automatically registered (and attributed) to your referral partner, but the system will also double-check that the lead in question doesn’t already exist.
Best for: Companies who want to ensure data cleanliness and perfect attribution of lead sources.
About: PartnerTap is a partner ecosystem platform that offers automated account mapping, enterprise sharing controls, channel insights, collaboration tools, and revenue analytics. With built-in chat and customizable partner data syncing, users can make the integration their own and streamline the partner management process.
Best for: Enterprise organizations managing large-scale partner programs.
About: GrowthDrive is a referral and viral marketing platform that specializes in incentive campaigns, affiliate programs, referral programs, and other types of partner ecosystems.
Best for: Marketing teams growing various types of affiliate and referral programs, particularly SaaS organizations or e-commerce brands. With incentives for promoters, this tool offers ongoing engagement support for your program.
“[This integration] is very helpful and responsive to meet my needs. It tracks referrers of leads, provides an incentive, integrates the referral leads into my Deal Flow in HubSpot, and confirms the completion of the actions so the referrer can get their reward when the terms are met,” says Mike Alvarez, a mutual GrowthDrive and HubSpot user.
About: Everflow allows you to support unlimited partners in a white-labeled platform with updated analytics, automated payments in 190+ countries, and a full onboarding and training program. Everflow provides rich data and analytics, allowing your team to find out:
Which partners are generating the highest-value referrals?
How are partners sourcing the contacts who turn into high LTV customers?
Which partners are driving poor-quality leads?
With actionable partner attribution data, the Everflow integration with HubSpot helps growth teams set up better partnership tracking, source analysis, and compensation structure that’s aligned to pipeline — no complicated manual work required.
Best for: Data-driven partnerships, international companies, and growing teams who need resources to help them scale. Everflow is designed for partner teams looking to generate more revenue from their partners and maximize growth within their ecosystem.
Why Customers Should use PRM Tools to Grow and Manage their Partnerships and Partner Programs at Scale
Traditionally, partner management involved a lot of spreadsheets, with hours spent poring over rows and rows of contacts looking for overlap between two companies’ prospects, leads, and customers.
PRM tools like the ones outlined above take that pain out of partner relationship management, leaving your teams to do the very human work of building relationships between teams at different companies, and building bridges so both companies can benefit from the reach of the other.