Partnerships are the cornerstone of growth for many businesses today, bridging gaps and creating synergies that drive mutual success. But in the ever-evolving landscape of partnership management, traditional methods alone may not be enough to deliver the results that companies are looking for.

Enter social selling—a dynamic strategy that focuses on using social media platforms to establish relationships and foster engagement. According to 87% of surveyed sellers, social selling was an effective tactic for their business in 2023. And as you might expect, social selling tactics can also be used in the partnerships field.

In a recent interview for Firneo’s Partner School program, CEO and Co-Founder of Firneo Scott Pollack and Grant Evans, Head of Partnerships at, delved into this topic. With over a decade of experience in sales and partnerships within the fintech sector, Grant shed light on the power of social selling, its ability to drive effective partnerships, and the challenges partnerships pros must deal with while attempting to utilize this strategy.

Understanding Social Selling

According to Grant, social selling goes beyond “traditional” sales and marketing strategies; instead, this is a truly multifaceted approach to engaging potential partners and building professional relationships. Essentially, social selling is all about harnessing the power of LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok, and other social media platforms to share compelling content, initiate conversations, and establish thought leadership.

Unlike strategies such as cold calling, social selling emphasizes authenticity, value creation, and strategic engagement. By leveraging existing social networks and curating content that meets the needs and interests of audience members, companies can foster genuine connections, drive brand awareness, and position themselves as trustworthy advisors in the eyes of prospective customers—and partners.

Social Selling and Partnerships

Social selling can help partnerships leaders shape the narratives of their collaborative ecosystems and form mutually-beneficial alliances. In pursuit of these goals, Grant said organizations must be ready to explain their own value propositions and champion the successes of their partners. By amplifying partner achievements, sharing industry insights, and facilitating an open dialogue, partnerships pros can cultivate an environment of trust and reciprocity that transcends competitive boundaries.

That said, partnerships pros shouldn’t rely solely on social selling to earn the trust of their partners. According to Grant, in-person events have become increasingly popular as of late—and these events are equally valuable opportunities for partnerships leaders. By attending relevant events aligned with their target sectors, these professionals can start gaining the trust of potential collaborators and engage with key stakeholders in a more personal manner.

Navigating the Complexities of Social Selling

Organizations that embrace social selling as a cornerstone of their partnerships strategies must be prepared to deal with the complexities associated with it. With that in mind, Grant highlighted the importance of:

Sharing the Right Content

Instead of inundating prospects with generic content, partnerships leaders must adopt a nuanced approach by tailoring their messaging to address specific pain points, industry trends, and market dynamics. With the help of data analytics and audience insights, organizations can easily fine-tune their social selling strategies, maximizing their potential impact and resonance.

Dealing With Resource Constraints

As Grant pointed out, partnerships teams are often under-resourced, forcing partnerships leaders to manage heavy workloads without sufficient personnel. In this situation, even the most skilled professionals would find it challenging to use social selling methods to their full potential.

However, partnerships pros can still succeed in this situation by collaborating with their organization’s demand generation and marketing teams. By working closely with these teams, partnership managers can leverage existing resources and align their partnership efforts with broader marketing initiatives.

Adapting to Evolving Platforms

By their very nature, social platforms are constantly changing—and anyone hoping to benefit from these platforms must be equally willing to embrace change. Taking this into account, Grant emphasized the importance of agility and adaptation. While focusing on social selling, partnerships leaders must make an effort to stay up-to-date on emerging platforms/technologies and remain open to experimentation. 

If partnerships teams can build a culture of continuous learning and upskilling, they can stay ahead of the curve and capitalize on growing trends. To this end, Grant encouraged partnerships pros to sign short contracts with platform providers. By doing so, they can explore new opportunities without being saddled with long-term commitments.

Leveraging Social Selling with Firneo

Social selling presents a unique opportunity for partnerships pros to expand their reach, nurture relationships, and pursue mutually-beneficial outcomes. By adopting a strategic approach, focusing on thought leadership, and prioritizing internal and external collaboration, partnerships leaders can overcome obstacles and unlock new avenues for growth and success.

Are you looking for additional advice on how to succeed in the fast-paced, highly competitive world of partnerships? If so, it’s not hard to see why—unlike workers in other industries, many partnerships pros don’t get the knowledge they need at the start of their careers. Fortunately, you can take your professional education into your own hands by enrolling in Firneo’s Mastering Partnerships Strategy course!

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