Cassandra Gholston on Planning For Partnerships From Day One

Today’s guest is an inspiring leader who has been a top performer at enterprise SaaS companies. She is the creator of the co-sell software category and she’s also changing the flow of capital through the Fempire movement. Cassandra Gholston is the CEO of PartnerTap. Cassandra joins co-hosts Josh Wagner and Sean Kester to share why startups need to be thinking about partnerships as early as possible. Cassandra dives into how to build a partner-first culture, why you should focus on one partner at a time, and how co-selling can transform your business.


  • For startup companies specifically, it’s vital to think about partnerships early in the business journey. Mapping out potential partners who cater to the same customer segments can help in laying the foundation for successful strategic partnerships.
  • A successful partnership is built on the idea of giving before taking. Be prepared to put in the effort, show value, and demonstrate what your company brings to the table before you start expecting to see returns.
  • Focus on one key partner. Rather than scattering resources across multiple partners, focusing on just one and nurturing that relationship is more effective. This allows for an in-depth understanding of each other’s business and facilitates mutual growth.
  • Use co-marketing to combine marketing efforts with your partners for greater impact. Co-selling can unlock additional customer segments, increase market reach, and enhance brand credibility, especially for startups and smaller brands.
  • An incredible competitive edge can be gained by integrating your technology solution with your partners’ products. The right integration can increase customer stickiness and lead to higher retention.
  • Communication and alignment are key to partnership success. Spell out your intentions, expectations, goals, and desired outcomes right from the start. Make sure you know how each party defines success. This sets a solid foundation for your partnership.
  • Make sure your partnerships align with your company’s goals and culture. The right partnership should feel like a natural extension of your business, rather than a forced or artificial alignment.


Quote of the Show:

  • “If you want to go sell to the enterprise, go and partner with the enterprise leader that you’re complimentary to as a technology company.” – Cassandra Gholston




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