For organizations looking to provide channel partners with automated, multi-touch marketing programs to maximize lead conversion rates, channel marketing and management (CMM) platforms are a viable option.  As more companies invest in CMM platforms, vendors are eager to differentiate themselves from the rest of the pack.

ZiftSolutionsWhile there are a handful of top contenders, the CMM competitive landscape just became a bit smaller. On October 28, Zift Solutions announced its acquisition of Marketing Advocate, also a channel marketing software provider.
SiriusDecisions believes this acquisition is logical for a number of reasons and will benefit both the vendors and their customers:

  • Experience. Marketing Advocate has an extensive history working with B2B channel marketers. This adds to Zift Solutions collective experience, which will likely benefit its customers.
  • Global coverage. Zift Solutions’ customers will gain access to Marketing Advocate’s global support team, enabling expanded coverage. In addition, Marketing Advocate’s strong relationships with large global suppliers will give Zift Solutions global market visibility beyond the markets they already serve.   
  • Client base. While both companies have predominantly focused on high-tech companies, Marketing Advocate has also expanded into the healthcare industry. Zift Solutions will benefit from this vertical expansion.
  • Product capabilities. By leveraging Marketing Advocate’s unique ability to allow partners to segment customer data (e.g. by industry, job titles, company size) while presenting them through a third-party interface (e.g. Harte-Hanks,, Zift Solutions will expand its product functionality. This will attract partners looking to link third-party data vendors to partner marketing campaigns.
  • Services capabilities. Zift Solutions will upgrade and extend its current concierge capabilities though Marketing Advocate’s Channel Concierge team, adding necessary outsourced marketing services that can guide partners through complex marketing processes.

Overall, Zift Solutions’ acquisition of Marketing Advocate enhances the company’s value proposition to its customers and provides it with greater global coverage, experience and essential product improvements that are critical to the execution of profitable channel marketing activities. However, acquisitions take time, and Zift’s ability to reach its strategic acquisition goals, including retaining  Marketing Advocate’s key talent, will directly affect its success.

For in-depth coverage of Zift Solutions, look for our SiriusView: Channel Marketing and Management 2015, which will be released in the first quarter of next year.