Nearbound Daily #578: Inside the Marketo x Drift Alliance (100+ Referrals in One Month)

Nearbound Daily #578: Inside the Marketo x Drift Alliance (100+ Referrals in One Month)

Ella Richmond 5 min

Welcome to the Nearbound Daily Newsletter—the #1 partnerships newsletter in the world keeping thousands of partner professionals on top of the latest industry principles, tactics, and trends. is a project of Reveal. Join the movement here.



Lost time, lost money

Worse than doing no work is doing fake work.


Paul Graham, legendary computer scientist, investor, and founder of YC Combinator, wrote an essay called “How to Lose Time and Money.”


In the piece, he explains that,

The most dangerous way to spend time is not to spend it having fun, it’s to spend it doing fake work.


Because, at least when you’re having fun, you know you’re being self-indulgent.


This is a life and work principle for everyone, but especially partner pros: there are a lot of tasks you can check the box doing that don’t actually move the needle.


Don’t settle for “fake work” when real work is actually more fun.



It was 2018 and Jared had just become the Senior Director of Global Partnerships at Drift.


He had two goals in mind:

  1. Make partnership success undeniable

  2. Document his process to get buy-in from every department and executive

Using his Strategic Alliances framework (learn more here), Jared picked a key partner to go after.


“We chose Marketo, and that meant I had to win. It wasn’t an experiment, it was a choice.”


Drift’s CEO, Dave Cancel’s only response was, “Don’t f*** it up.”


Fast-forward a few months, and the partnership had already secured 117 accounts.


So, how did Jared and his team do this?


Jared shared his documentation from back in 2018 to “learn out loud” and hopefully help others achieve similar results.


The plan:

Jared wanted to get in-person meetings. He believed he could generate 180 intros in a three-day trip.


He explains,


Step one: Easy referrals

We set up [email protected] as an email, that way our CTA for anyone who hears “chat”, “conversations”, “live chat”, or whatever—whether they are a CSM or AE—can refer us in real-time without having to track down how. They can just email [email protected] and we’ll take care of the rest.


#thingsthatdontscale: this email goes to a Slack group that Alex and I monitor and can respond to quickly.


No one is going to remember some URL or my email. Plus, it kind of does scale if you think about it. Other folks can staff this as we grow and we can replicate it for other partners. Clean, simple, and effective.


Step two: Enablement

We produced some sales enablement collateral that emphasized why they should care about Drift—in other words, what’s in it for them. More contacts = more upsell.


Win. Win. Win.


Step three: Be memorable

We visited all three major Marketo offices in person as cheaply as possible. I would personally buy breakfast/lunch for them and get them in a room with me. I would explain the promo, why it mattered to them, and end with a strong CTA. I also printed out these materials and put them on every desk.


Email is a black hole, but details nicely printed specifically for them were a way to stand out and have some staying power on their desk. It was printed on gloss card stock.


Driftx Marketo


Keep reading here



Dream ecosystem book list

Jay McBain (Chief Analyst at Canalys) shared one impressive stack of partnership & ecosystem books!


Here are the links for all U.S.-based readers:

  • Partnernomics: The Art, Science, and Processes of Developing Successful Strategic Partnerships by Mark Brigman

  • Performance Partnerships: The Checkered Past, Changing Present & Exciting Future of Affiliate Marketing by Robert Glazer

  • Alliances, Strategic Partnerships and the Power of Analytics: Gain Control, Reduce Risk and Accelerate Growth by E. Keith Gaylord

  • Channel Force: A Modern Methodology for Channel Revenue Growth by Craig Booth

  • Nearbound and the Rise of the Who Economy by Jared Fuller

  • Ecosystem-Led Growth: A Blueprint for Sales and Marketing Success Using the Power of Partnerships by Bob Moore

  • The Partnership Economy: How Modern Businesses Find New Customers, Grow Revenue, and Deliver Exceptional Experiences by Dave A. Yovanno


Stuff you don’t want to miss!

  • May 9th—Build or Let Build? Master Integrations—Join Nick Valluri (Dropbox & Coda) and Franz-Josef Schrepf (Hopin) to discuss how Nick builds integrations and partnerships with some of the world’s largest companies, including Microsoft and Nvidia. Register here.

  • May 30th—Driving Revenue Through Technology Partners—Learn from Kelly Sarabyn (Head of Product Partnerships Advocacy and Enablement at HubSpot), Asher Matthew (CEO at Partnership Leaders), and Robbie Ptaszynski (Director of Strategic Pursuits and Priority ISV Co-sell at Microsoft) as they discuss the revenue impact partnerships teams can have and evolving from re-selling to co-selling. Register here.

  • Nearbound Summit 2023 Recordings—The future of GTM is nearbound. Watch the recordings to hear how B2B leaders across departments unite with Nearbound strategies and tactics. Listen here.


You’re all caught up.


See you tomorrow



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Ella Richmond 5 min

Nearbound Daily #578: Inside the Marketo x Drift Alliance (100+ Referrals in One Month)

It was 2018 and Jared had just become the Senior Director of Global Partnerships at Drift. He had two goals in mind: Make partnership success undeniable and document his process to get buy-in from every department and executive.

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