Outreach Deal Intelligence (Part II)

Continuation from yesterday’s blog on Outreach Deal Intelligence.


The Outreach platform manages and monitors deal health beginning with Sales Development Reps warming up accounts via sequenced outreach.  Once a prospect is ready to speak with an account executive, the meeting is calendared, and relevant stakeholders are notified.  During meetings, Outreach Kaia records, analyzes, and summarizes calls while providing real-time transcription, bookmarking, and insights.

Outreach Kaia also triggers the creation of an opportunity and “recommends a pre-built blueprint for a mutual action plan, known as Success Plans, between buyer and seller.”

Outreach Success Plans align buyers and sellers to improve action and predictability.  They act as a buying hub that allows buyers and sellers to agree on shared success criteria, objectives, and timelines.  Success Plans also support shared access to project resources, allowing new demand unit members to quickly access project documents.  Only invited individuals can participate in the Success Plans.

Outreach claims that two-thirds of buyers have “stopped working with a company mid-deal, simply because the competitor provided a better buying experience.”  Thus, streamlining the document sharing process, framing the timeline, and agreeing on success criteria facilitates the process and improves deal visibility and the likelihood of winning each deal.

“The Success Plan in Outreach is the only integrated mutual action plan that already has all the activity data to date associated with the deal, including the meeting notes and email exchanges.  Combined with the power of AI-captured job titles and sentiment, Success Plans include all the people engaged in the deal on the buying team, along with the milestones, purchasing steps, and resources needed to collaborate on the deal going forward.  Every new meeting booked, stakeholder introduced, and resource shared is automatically synced into the Success Plan.  This takes the administrative tax off the seller and gives them more time to actively sell while ensuring accurate and timely data capture of granular buyer engagement.  Each phase in the Success Plan is pre-configured and linked to a stage in the sales process under the hood. Gone are the days of sales leaders hounding reps for status updates – they are now updated and monitored automatically.”

Outreach CMO Melton Littlepage

As the deal progresses, Outreach captures engagement and sentiment across meetings, emails, and the Success Plan, feeding AI-based deal health insights and recommendations to sales reps and management.  In addition, deal health is aggregated at the team level in Outreach Commit, with projections around which deals are likely to close during the quarter.

Outreach AI Guided Deal Intelligence

Outreach is positioning the new functionality as a “single source of truth for deals, pipeline, and forecasting” that drives “faster deal cycles and more predictable revenue.”  Its platform offers a single solution for sales engagement, conversation intelligence, digital salesrooms, and revenue intelligence.

“Outreach has already demonstrated that by creating operational excellence with a system of action for prospecting, you can optimize your sales processes and qualify more deals, faster,” said Outreach CEO Manny Medina.  “Outreach’s new AI-Guided Deal Intelligence demonstrates this again with the closing process – by centralizing the activity around a deal behind a single pane of glass, capturing accurate data and transforming it into deal health insights that drive actions, account executives are more equipped than ever to close more deals, faster, and sales managers, leaders and CROs can sleep soundly knowing they finally have a source of truth for deal health.”

Deal Intelligence will be available for an open beta in early 2022.

Outreach Deal Intelligence

The Outreach Deal Summary provides an opportunity overview, recent activity, and access to Kaia, Commit, and Success Plans.

Sales Engagement Platform vendor Outreach will be rolling out AI-Guided Deal Intelligence in 2022.  The new Deal Insights functionality provides a consolidated opportunity view that includes a deal overview, deal health, risks, and next best action recommendations from a single pane of glass.

“Deal Intelligence doesn’t just warn you a deal is off track but will actually guide you to help understand what you can do now, in the moment, to change the outcome,” explained Senior Communications Manager Amanda Woolley to GZ Consulting.  “Deal Intelligence is going to reach across the Outreach platform and gather signals from all facets of the platform and throughout the customer journey and move from risk identification into action.”

Many of the components of Deal Intelligence such as Sentiment Analysis, Success Plans, Kaia, Commit, and engagement monitoring already exist in the Outreach platform, with the new Deal Intelligence tying together data and insights from the various modules and summarizing them with deal health and next best action recommendations.

“Built on the foundation of our deep machine learning tools like Kaia, Intent, title classification, and more, Deal Intelligence will help remove some of the “best guesses” we revenue leaders have been doing,” explained Outreach CRO Anna Baird.  “Deal Intelligence will be gathering signals and let us know – not only when we have a risk – but what we can do to change the outcome!  It’s not just a warning light, but a full explanation of how to correct the issue.  Deal Intelligence will bring true transparency to opportunity management and help us get to that predictable revenue goal we all want.”

Deal intelligence is gathered across the deal lifecycle and ongoing customer interactions, including sequences, email sentiment, calendaring, Outreach Kaia (conversational intelligence and real-time recommendations), Success Plans (digital salesrooms), and Outreach Commit (pipeline health and forecasting).

“The current ML model looks at the multiple factors and compares them across benchmarks we have collected to derive the [Health Insights] score,” explained Woolley.  “Some of the key top-level factors included Decision-maker engagement, activity across email and calls, meeting analysis as well as interaction within Success Plan.  For every deal, the ML model determines which factors are positive (‘green flag’) or negative polarity (‘red flag’).”

Both red and green flags are displayed in Deal Intelligence.  The Deal Intelligence service summarizes relevant signals, but “given the number of signals captured, it is very hard for a sales rep to drill through every deal.”  Outreach’s goal is to “surface all the relevant information for the sales rep in a unified view with the ability to drill deeper as well as take action from within Outreach.”

“Sales reps only succeed when they take the right actions to close deals, yet for far too long they have lacked true visibility into the health of their deals and are forced to turn to intuition and guesswork to select the next best actions to take. Sales leaders and reps have to contend with disparate, dated sales technologies as they strive for an accurate understanding of their deals, pipeline, and forecast.  CRM solutions provide a way to store data but rely on extensive tedious manual data entry from sales reps, often resulting in a “garbage-in garbage-out” situation that does not help reps or managers make confident decisions.  Point solutions like conversation intelligence offer a way to record conversations and glean insights hours or days later, but at best, they can tell what the reps’ next actions in other systems should be. All are failing to deliver deal observability. And none of them give real-time deal intelligence to sales reps and seamlessly automate the next actions all in one continuous experience.  Until now, that is.”

Outreach CMO Melton Littlepage

Part II continues tomorrow with a discussion of Outreach deal health analytics across the deal lifecycle.

Qualified Signals

Conversational Sales and Marketing vendor Qualified announced select availability for its new Signals intent product.  Qualified Signals delivers sales intelligence gleaned from company websites, helping them identify in-market accounts and prioritize their outreach.

Qualified Signals is an “AI product that combines website engagement with Salesforce data to surface the buying intent of a B2B company’s target accounts; helping sales reps focus on exactly the right accounts to generate more pipeline and revenue,” blogged Qualified CRO Robert Zimmerman.

When ABM was proposed as the successor to lead-generation marketing, it focused on defining the ICP and targeting accordingly.  While the ICP concept is still important, it fails to recognize that at any one moment, most ICP accounts are not in-market.  Thus, a further refinement was in order, deploying intent (e.g., visitor intelligence, chatbots, third-party B2B website activity) and engagement data (e.g., email responses, meeting attendance, sentiment) to prioritize accounts so that sales reps focus on the accounts that are in market and marketing continues to nurture ICP accounts with low-level intent signals.

“Sales reps need a simple way to identify the accounts with high purchase intent so they can maximize pipeline more efficiently,” argued Zimmerman.  “Meanwhile, target accounts are poking around the website and signaling buying intent, but sales reps have no idea.  This is a missed opportunity because website engagement is a critical predictor of purchase intent.  It demonstrates patterns of website activity that indicate whether an account is sales-ready.”

Unfortunately, website activity is a “blind spot for salespeople” that leaves them “in the dark as to where to focus their attention, how to engage target accounts, and how deals are progressing.”

Qualified Signals employs an AI-predictive model that collects “hundreds of thousands of website data points to determine which accounts are in-market to buy and sales-ready.”  Models include website activity such as mouse movement, clicks, scroll depth, page views, active time on site, chatbot engagement, live chat, voice calls, meetings booked, recency and frequency of visits, and visitor count.

“In a booming sales tech market, there are countless sales intelligence tools out there, but they often overlook the most important sales and marketing asset—the corporate website,” said Qualified CEO Kraig Swensrud.  “Signals arms sellers with an entirely new type of buying intent data, so revenue teams know exactly which accounts to pursue to crush their quota.”

The Qualified Signals Account Trend Report analyzes buyer activity on the company website across a rep’s territory, helping her prioritize activity and identify accounts where activity is cooling.

Signals are displayed to sales reps in the Salesforce Account record and convert complex buyer behavior into straightforward trends such as cooling, neutral, heating, and surging.  Trend data “can also be customized using unique Salesforce Account data to home in on the accounts that matter most, like ABM tier, account owner, region, or industry.”

Signals optionally pushes custom Account intent fields to Salesforce, which can then be built into custom reports and dashboards.

Qualified also displays Signals Account 360, a dynamic graph that visualizes purchase intent fluctuations over time for individual accounts.  Signals are expressed as a current Heat Index temperature, dynamic trend, and detailed account activity view that replays account engagement at the contact level.  The account timeline “offers a detailed, highly visual, timestamped overview of notable website events that occurred throughout the buying process,” blogged Zimmerman.

The Account 360 view combines heat index trend data alongside visitor intelligence.

Additionally, Signals supports mobile, email, and Slack alerts when an account hits client specified thresholds on the Qualified Heat Index.  Alerts may be sent in real-time or included in a daily or weekly email digest.

“Qualified Signals amplifies Qualified X, bringing purchase intent data to the visitor level within your conversational sales and marketing application,” stated the firm.  “When a sales rep prospects into a target account, they’re instantly notified when that account arrives on the site.  Plus, they have all intent data at the ready. They can instantly meet with the prospect using a full stack of meeting tools, including chat, voice, and screen-sharing.”

Due to the complexity of visitor intelligence and similar data, intent signals have mostly been fed into marketing platforms and not converted into actionable semaphores; however, sales intelligence vendors have begun enabling these signals.

“The website is no longer just for marketers; it’s now a window into your biggest sales opportunities.  Sellers have their standard indicators that an account is interested, and a deal is moving forward; but in between the standard touchpoints, prospects are poking around your website, reading a customer story, or engaging via live chat.  Sellers have had limited insight into how target accounts are exploring this property, but the website is an amazing predictor of intent.  Now, Qualified Signals will surface this invaluable insight for revenue teams.”

Qualified CEO Kraig Swensrud

Qualified Signals will GA in early 2022.

Qualified closed on a $51 million Series B round in May that Salesforce Ventures led.  The firm describes itself as “the only conversational sales and marketing platform purpose-built for Salesforce Sales Cloud.”

Qualified Insights delivered via Slack and mobile devices.