It’s 2025 and your CRO, CPO, and head of Customer Success have just completed a QBR with the CEO and Board reviewing the results of their GoToEco strategy. This was a stellar review. The hallmark was that growth in net new logo and NRR are at all-time highs.
How did you get here?
It’s all due to a decision made in 2022 to double down on The GoToEco Referral Flywheel:
In 2022, your CPO and Head of Customer Support had an epiphany about how to grow the business. At the time, recurring themes in repeated customer visits were that:
- End-to-end solutions delivering key business outcomes were in high demand.
- Customers wanted vendors and their partners to be more proactive in recommending and supporting bundled offerings - rather than just slapping together an integration and calling it good.
- Customer success organizations needed to step up and be true advisors, owning solution value creation.
As a result of the insight, the CPO and CRO agreed to partner to drive the following:
- Productized Joint Solutions. To go beyond just an integration by working with tech partners to present joint customers with complete offerings.
- True Customer Success Advice. Rather than over-spending on BDRs and AEs who don’t hit quota, redirect staff spending to turn the CS team into advisors who can solve customers’ end-to-end business problems by designing solutions that leverage tech partnerships and supported use cases.
- Tech Partner Integrations and NRR Growth. Rewarding the CS team on integration deployment within joint customers and referring business to tech partners whose solution addressed an unmet use case.
- Referral Reciprocity. As tech partners saw growth in net new logos on the back of referrals, reciprocity kicked in with referrals back to AEs.
- New Logo Growth. Referrals from tech partners that are consistent with GoToEco referral benchmarks: 70% higher conversion, 50% faster conversion time, and 34% higher deal sizes.
But there were challenges in execution. We hit headwinds in 2023 as our decision to reallocate funds to upskill and motivate CS didn’t deliver at the speed we had hoped. We made a big error by not pre-selling the full strategy to our VCs who started to ask why we weren't focusing 100% on SDR/AE priorities in our direct GTM. Luckily, our CEO caught the error and aligned our VCs on the leading indicators that turned into NRR growth in 2023 and tons of new logo growth in 2023 and especially in 2024.
The solution: GoToEco
The VC problem was pretty easy to fix in hindsight because our investor had just finished an analysis of the ROI on SDR/AE performance across their portfolio and was noticing lower quota attainment, lower pipeline conversion, and a slowdown in NRR growth due to churn and cross-sell and up-sell challenges. This meant investors were willing to take a risk, closely tracking our integration deployment as the most important leading indicator for NRR growth and pipeline growth in reciprocated partner referrals as the leading indicator of new logo growth.
We even got a write-up in Harvard Business Review and an HBS case study showing how GoToEco allowed us to completely change the age-old go-it-alone of GoToMarket with superior logo and NRR growth and transform our culture through a renewed focus on ethical dealings, relationship development, focus on accountability, sustainable business practices, and the resources to give back to our communities.
The courage to try a new direction
It took courage and conviction to do what’s right and to stop blaming the wall for head-bashing headaches.
It’s time for all of us to acknowledge that Direct GoToMarket is broken and that the future lies with GoToEco. Please come to my session on GoToEco for CROs on Success Day of PLX Summit (12:30 PT), and we’ll dig into how to drive the GoToEco Referral Flywheel and get you ready to publish your HBS case study.
Prefer to listen? Subscribe to our PartnerHacker Audio Articles Podcast. Text-to-speech provided by our partner Voicemaker.in.