Relationships matter. That's one of the key themes coming out of the The Partner Event 2009. Whether they be online or traditional face-to-face meetings - establishing, building and keeping relationships can create winning results!

Here are of some of the cool tips and ideas I've gathered from this year's event.

Day 1 - Sunday, September 20, 2009

Jesse Byam from eTelligent Solutions provided some very entertaining segments as the event emcee, and several ISV's delivered both humorous and informative highlights of their solutions that integrate with Microsoft Dynamics. Finally, during the keynote, Bonnie Robertson from The Robertson Company shared her thoughts regarding how future success goes to those who adapt. I think this theme really dives into embacing techology, and how innovation can deliver stronger connections to your customers. Day 1 ended with a reception allowing everyone to catch up with old friends, and new associates.

Day 2 - Monday, September 21, 2009

I attended 4 workshops throughout the day, here's are some of the tips that I picked up...

  • Social Marketing Strategies and Metrics - Joe Rotella, Delphia Consulting. Joe spoke about launching your social media community and 11 key best practices to follow. Check out his blog for more information. Many of these seem pretty straightforward, but can be very time consuming, so plan appropriately!
  • Sales Growth Formula: Emotional Intelligence + Social Media = Winning in the Trust-Based Economy - Joe Mechlinski, EntreQuest. Joe discussed how estalishing trust with your customers and prospects allows you connect at an emotional level. Through trust you can demonstrate not just your solution/product knowledge (IQ), but that you care (EQ).
  • You Think I Should Recruit New Talent NOW? - Tom Savage, CareerBuilder. Microsoft and CareerBuilder have partnered to offer several discounted services to partners to help them recruit new talent. Check them out on PartnerSource.
  • Social Media Marketing: Ready for B2B Prime Time? - Amy Spencer, The Partner Marketing Group. Amy spoke about 5 social media myths as well as the pros and cons (based on partner feedback) of social media websites. Also, don't forget about face-to-face relationship marketing.

As you can see I was draw to many of the hot topic social media sessions!

Day 2 wrapped up with more ISV demos plus an insightful "voice of the customer" keynote from Greg Lush from The Linc Group.

Evening events included a Social and Tour of the Microsoft Fargo Campus plus a Dinner & Party at The Partner Channel offices in fabulous downtown Fargo.