Aberdeen Behavioral Technographics

Behavioral Technographic Use Cases from Aberdeen.
Behavioral Technographic Use Cases from Aberdeen.

Intent and technographics vendor Aberdeen announced Aberdeen Behavioral Technographics, their next-generation installed technology dataset.  Aberdeen is the successor to the pioneering Ziff Davis and Harte-Hanks Access CI dataset that was developed over two decades ago.

Aberdeen notes that traditional technographics are binary, static flags at the corporate level whereas Behavioral Technographics “actively measure technology usage down to company location, number of users, and pains and priorities of the usage.”

“Technographic data has been overdue for innovation,” said Aberdeen CEO Marc Osofsky.  “The reaction to our data has been amazing, companies have signed up within days of seeing the data.”

Aberdeen claims that its technographics are “up to 55% more accurate than legacy install (technographic) data” resulting in improved account prioritization, pipeline, and win-rates.

“Historical technographic data is actually still pretty new for most firms.  And the way that it’s most commonly collected, at least in recent days, is focusing on job boards and individual websites to determine whether or not technology’s actually installed at a company.  And they do this by…focusing on the job boards to see if a technology is present within the actual job description.  There are a lot of fallbacks to this, and this new method gets around that way.”

Benjamin Cavicchi, Aberdeen Senior Data Analyst

Behavioral Technographics are based upon technology usage and topical queries, not simply installation.  Data is captured from over 1,100 websites that host educational content concerning technologies.  This takes them beyond traditional job board scans to include forums, tutorials, and educational sites.  365 days of behavioral data are captured which include deployed technology, pain points, and topics.

“We focus on the education of an individual about a technology because that is clear evidence that they use it,” said Aberdeen Senior Data Analyst Benjamin Cavicchi.  “So what we’re looking at is a handful or a couple of thousand websites that resolve to user tutorials or user forums where people ask questions and answer them about a technology, as well as a host of other, I would say, technology-specific blogs where experts write about it.”

Cavicchi’s idea was to focus on those pages ”that answer these very specific questions that you would have in your daily work working with the technology.”  This is the content that shows up when technology questions are typed into Google.

For example, if employees are researching topics about Excel, they are likely using it.  “The idea is that if you aggregate all of the individuals associated with a company and you look at this historical activity on Excel, you can get a better understanding of whether or not they use it.  So other users at his company may be googling other, more advanced things like how to write efficient VBA code, or creating dynamic Excel dashboards,” said Cavicchi.

And because they are looking at trends and technology questions, they can discern which companies are using precursors to more advanced solutions, usage levels, and current pain points.  Behavioral Technographics are available at the location level.

“Excel is the natural antecedent to a BI solution, a more advanced one.  So if you have a lot of people at a company that are writing VBA code, that are trying to create these dynamic dashboards, but they don’t have any activity on any other BI solution, it seems to me that they probably need one.  We’re finding the problems of the company, and helping companies to essentially find them, too.

“Behavioral Technographics is a perfect complement to Intent Data,” said Aberdeen.  “Both provide full visibility into your target market: Intent Data identifies companies in-market to buy and Behavioral Technographics provides technology in use insights to prioritize and target the remaining accounts not yet showing intent.”

Behavioral Technographics are patent-pending.  Aberdeen describes its new technographics as “dynamic and quantitative.”

The next step will be behavioral profiling which is common in B2C but has yet to be extended to B2B.  Behavioral Profiling will look at groups of individuals to determine buyers and influencers.  For example, high levels of research around python indicate the presence of a data science team.

Aberdeen entered the intent market when it acquired The Big Willow last December.

HubSpot App Marketplace

HubSpot's App Partner Program supports over 300 apps.
HubSpot’s App Partner Program supports over 300 apps.

At its INBOUND conference earlier this month, HubSpot released a new app Marketplace.  “One of the things we’ve really tried to do with the next iteration of the marketplace is just to help SMBs (small to medium businesses) get deeper information on these integrations,” said HubSpot VP of platform ecosystem Scott Brinker.  “So you’re not just like, ‘Oh, here’s another company, go off and figure it out.’ It’s like, ‘OK, here’s exactly how this interfaces into HubSpot.  Here’s a video of how it works.”

HubSpot partners are obligated to post pricing information, data flow structure, and demo videos.  The new market supports improved filtering and searching.  Over 300 apps are available with 93% of HubSpot’s 64,000 customers having installed at least one app.  The average customer has installed five apps.

Amongst the top apps are Gmail, Outlook Calendar, Zapier (connectors), Facebook Ads, Google Calendar, Twitter, MailChimp, WordPress, LinkedIn, Facebook, Slack, Vidyard, Google Ads, and SurveyMonkey. “We’re really excited about trying to make this whole platform ecosystem world accessible to the SMB markets,” said Brinker.

“It’s not enough to have the wondrous capabilities all these different apps offer, especially if each is locked in their own silo.  To run your business effectively and to give customers a coherent and compelling experience across all the different touchpoints they have with you, all these different apps need to work together. This is why HubSpot is committed to building an open platform that can serve as a “hub” for the myriad apps across your business that all contribute to improving the customer experience.  We want to make it easy for you to orchestrate these apps, to better serve your customers, and to help you grow better.”

HubSpot VP of platform ecosystem Scott Brinker

The new marketplace can be found at HubSpot.com/ecosystem.

Vainu Rebrands

Finnish sales intelligence vendor Vainu rebranded earlier this week. The goal was to provide a unified view of the company.  Vainu is focused on company intelligence but includes registered contact/director details and mined data. The firm also offers CRM and MAP data enrichment and hygiene services.

Unlike most sales intelligence databases, Vainu is available in English, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Dutch, Danish and French.  Country datasets include Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, and The Netherlands with detailed financial data available for Norway, Sweden, and Finland.  Beta datasets are available for France, the UK, and the US with additional countries being developed.

Core UK data is gathered from Companies House.  US data is aggregated from state filings.

I’ve been planning on covering Vainu for the past six months but was waiting for an event.  Rebranding is as good a reason any.

Vainu was launched in 2014 and crowdsourced its initial dog nose logo (Vainu is a Finnish word for the scent picked up by an animal).  The website design and other branding aspects were inconsistent.

“Everything else was pretty much put together ad hoc after that: color schemes and supporting visuals for our first website layout, stock photos for our first slide decks, different messages to cater to the situations at hand.  The end result has been just as fragmented or ad hoc as our strategy: we’ve looked and felt different and sounded different in any situation.”

Mikko Luhtava, Vainu Head of Communications

Now that the firm has 2,000 customers and 180 employees, they felt it was time to formalize their brand with a new logo, tagline, and website with real images and black, white, and yellow text.

Vainu argues that B2B Sales is still stuck in the era of spam emails and cold calling lists.  “While buyers are looking for a real conversation, one where they’re engaged and understood, salespeople are looking at activity targets and sales quota, merely treating buyers as numbers,” blogged Luhtava.

Thus, the firm offers “real-time B2B sales.”  It is akin to SalesLoft’s call for authenticity in sales.  “While buyers are looking for a real conversation, one where they’re engaged and understood, salespeople are looking at activity targets and sales quota, merely treating buyers as numbers,” stated Luhtava.  “At Vainu, we believe there’s a right way of doing B2B sales—a way that is personalized, a way that uses data, a way that focuses on the buyer.  And we’ve made it our mission to make salespeople better at their jobs, by bringing real-time company data to every customer interaction.  We call this real-time sales.

Vainu supports company list building.  Selects include firmographics, technographics, buying signals (sales triggers), and account intelligence from the company’s CRM.  Trigger alerts cover company announcements, personnel changes, technology updates, and new additions to a prospect list.

The Vainu database covers nearly 60 million active companies and includes company profiles, technology stacks, corporate financials, and recent company news.

CRM admins can setup data syncing and enrichment with Salesforce, MS Dynamics, HubSpot, Pipedrive, Upsales, and SuperOffice.  Zapier is available for other platforms.  The firm also supports an API.

Vainu enriches leads before they are loaded into MAPs assisting with lead scoring and routing.

Vainu also offers bulk data for data modeling including business registry data, website information, and open and web-crawled intelligence.  Applications include churn prediction, account scoring, and financial services risk calculations.

Pricing begins at €6,600 (£6,000 or $7,250) per year for five reps plus a one-time onboarding fee of €600 for a single country database.  Each additional country dataset is priced at €3,000.  At 25 seats, the service is priced at €30,600 (£28,000 or $33,650) with a one-time onboarding fee of €2,100.  Each additional country dataset is priced at €3,000.  Nordic financial data adds €2,400.

Zoominfo: New Branding & Packaging

Zoominfo offers pricing and packaging similar to its legacy offerings, helping ensure a smooth transition to their new platform.

Yesterday, DiscoverOrg announced that it is rebranding with the Zoominfo name. The firm determined that it was easier to build brand perception than brand presence. They also rolled out a new combined platform and packaging.

While the firm officially launched their new platform yesterday, the two legacy platforms will continue to be available to clients under current contracts and pricing structures.  The 100 customers who have licensed both products since acquisition will be moved to the joint platform.

The second issue the firm confronted was their pricing structure.  Zoominfo pricing was based on the number of records purchased or maintained under a subscription license with a significantly lower initial price point.  DiscoverOrg provided broad access to their database with an average contract value of around $30,000.  The new product line offers pricing and functionality similar to legacy Zoominfo offerings at the lower end and pricing and packaging similar to DiscoverOrg at the upper end.  Thus, as contracts expire and customers migrate to the new platform, there should not be significant sticker shock.

The Starter package for a single user supports basic company and contact information, direct dials and verified emails, quick search, and prospect list building.  The service is designed to help users “find their next customer.”

The Professional package is akin to the broader Zoominfo service.  Professional helps three users “prospect with ease.”  Additional features include a Contact Accuracy Score, recent and saved searches, list management, customizable tags, and list matching.  Professional also supports CRM, MAP, and Sales Automation solutions.

The Advanced package supports unlimited page-level exports and provides “deep insights” for five users.  The package is similar to DiscoverOrg with technographics, org charts, Scoops (sales triggers), web references, similar companies, personal contact details, investors, funding data, and rich bios with education and work histories.  Other features include data enhancements and alerts.

Finally, the Elite package provides “actionable intelligence” including intent data and alerts (OppAlerts), ideal customer profiling and scoring (AccountView), Company Attributes, NeverBounce email verification, and department-level employee counts.  Elite also begins with five users and supports unlimited page-level exports.

Additional products include

  • FormComplete: a web form enrichment service
  • WebSights: a newly launched visitor id service.  The service is still in beta and based upon their extensive IP addresses tied to company intelligence.
  • Enrich: CRM and MAP data maintenance

DiscoverOrg emphasizes that it has “solutions for businesses of every size” on its pricing page.  While this is generally true and they have done an excellent job of combining two companies with much different pricing models, they do not have a single-seat sales intelligence solution priced to compete against LinkedIn Sales Navigator, InsideView, or D&B Hoovers. However, DiscoverOrg has never offered such a product and it has had high growth rates from the beginning. With the Zoominfo acquisition, they are much more competitive at the lower end of the market save the single-seat sales intelligence scenario.

Zoominfo has historically focused on the sales and marketing function, but Schuck sees a broader user base.  “The thing that ends up happening is they invest in CRM, marketing automation and open the door to any information to go into those systems,” he said.  

New use cases include website visitors, trade show and webinar attendees, and ongoing data hygiene.  

“There’s no mechanism to update that data.  Meanwhile, companies are growing, they’re shrinking, they’re doing a merger or acquisition, an IPO.  They’re hiring a new CEO, a new CMO, a new CIO.”

Zoominfo CEO Henry Schuck

Zoominfo plans on sending their executives to communicate the new brand and capabilities at conferences and tradeshows this fall.  The firm also plans digital advertising and offline advertising (e.g. billboards) in key markets.

Flash: DiscoverOrg Rebrands as Zoominfo

Zoominfo Executive Details include Employment by Job Function
Zoominfo executive details include employment by job function

After DiscoverOrg acquired Zoominfo in February, the firm maintained both brands and announced that a new platform which supported both services would be available this summer.  At the time, the assumption was that the Zoominfo brand would be retired and the firm would move forward as DiscoverOrg.  After all, DiscoverOrg was the larger of the two firms and the brand was highly associated with data quality, technographics, and rich executive profiles while Zoominfo was known for having the largest set of B2B emails and direct dials spanning companies of all sizes and positions.

DiscoverOrg commissioned research into both brands and found that Zoominfo had broader brand awareness.  The research also indicated that it would be less expensive to increase brand equity than brand awareness.  Both brands had their strengths, but, according to Chief Growth Officer Katie Bullard, it was easier to buy brand perception than brand awareness.  Furthermore, research indicated that the Zoominfo brand perception had improved since acquisition.

“There was significantly more — three times — the market awareness around the ZoomInfo brand than the DiscoverOrg brand,” said CEO Henry Schuck.  “I’ve tried to pride myself on making the decision that is right for the business and not necessarily easy for me or convenient for me.  This was obvious.  This was the right decision for the business, and I wasn’t going to let the nostalgia for the DiscoverOrg brand overshadow that.”

Based on this research, the firm decided to retain the Zoominfo brand and deploy the DiscoverOrg brand as a “powered by” brand booster.  Thus, the new platform will be labeled Zoominfo Powered by DiscoverOrg for the next year or two.

“The new platform will be known as ZoomInfo powered by DiscoverOrg and combines the strengths and benefits of the DiscoverOrg platform with those of the ZoomInfo platform, which it acquired in February 2019.  Designed to be the single source of B2B data truth for sales and marketing professionals, the new platform offers a suite of software tools coupled with unrivaled data coverage, accuracy and depth.  As a result, customers gain a highly actionable 360-degree view of contacts, companies, and opportunities to target and convert.  Deeply integrated into both workflows and technology stacks, ZoomInfo powered by DiscoverOrg works seamlessly with all the leading sales, marketing and CRM platforms…”

With this launch, ZoomInfo Powered by DiscoverOrg features an unparalleled combination of proprietary AI and machine learning tools, a vast contributory network, deep two-way business application integrations, and human verification from over 300 researchers.  The result is the most unique [sic] and effective SaaS platform designed to empower companies to deliver more predictable and sustainable growth.”

Zoominfo Press Release (September 10, 2019)

The firm’s mission is “To create a world where every company has a clear view of their ideal customers and how to connect with them.”

The new Zoominfo logo is black with a standalone Z and a rising arrow.  

The site is simplified from DiscoverOrg’s last design with white, gray, lavender, and black as the primary background colors.  Red and lavender are employed for buttons and hyperlinks.  Most text is black with white employed for text in buttons and black backgrounds.  The site is much less frenetic than the last DiscoverOrg design.  A splash of lavender and light use of pastels, which are not often used in B2B websites, provide a calming effect.

The new website tagline is “Your business deserves more.”  The firm continues, “ZoomInfo gives you more.  We combine the leading business contact database with best-in-class technology to pinpoint, process, and deliver the marketing and sales intelligence you need— exactly when and how you need it, to always hit your number.”

Zoominfo employs four methods for acquiring company and contact intelligence: signature block mining; automated online crawling and machine learning; in-house editorial teams: and third-party data licensing.

Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) reached $350 million across 13,500 customers.  ARR has grown significantly since the Zoominfo acquisition.  According to Inc., combined 2018 revenue was $222 million.  As ARR is higher than revenue when a subscription service is growing, the likely 2019 revenue is around $300 million+.

Zoominfo also has to reposition its data acquisition model.  DiscoverOrg began employing web data acquisition tools last year, so that methodology was already understood by their clients.  The firm also has licensed data sets in the past, however sparingly.  The new website discusses four methods for data gathering: signature block mining; automated online crawling and machine learning; in-house editorial teams: and third-party data licensing.

Signature block intelligence comes from Zoominfo’s community members that permit access to signature blocks in exchange for Zoominfo access.  It is the most controversial of their methods as data is being harvested on third-parties without their consent.  While both companies are GDPR compliant, Zoominfo’s approach was simply to add an EU contact filter.  This is an area that they will likely need to address further, particularly as US states adopt GDPR-like regulations and Zoominfo expands its “personal contact details.”

Machine learning gathers technographic and firmographic intelligence from job boards, web sites, news, and SEC filings.  It is a standard data gathering method and broadly employed across the industry.

“We use cutting edge AI/ML technologies to help GTM [go-to-market] teams stay laser-focused on the right markets and best opportunities to hit their number.”

Zoominfo website

Human research for gathering and verifying company and contact data has long been at the core of DiscoverOrg’s brand and value proposition.  Zoominfo continues to maintain the DiscoverOrg editorial team of over 300 researchers.  The editorial process is the basis of their high data quality and rich biographic and technographic intelligence.  As such, it is the justification for their premium pricing.  Hopefully, the firm doesn’t make the mistake that D&B did after acquiring Hoovers and allowing its editorial capabilities to atrophy when a high-quality dataset (Hoover’s editorial coverage of 42,000 companies) was mixed with a much larger universe of companies and contacts (D&B WorldBase).  Given DiscoverOrg’s long-term focus on data quality and editorial research, it is unlikely that they would make this mistake.  Conversations I’ve had with Schuck and Bullard over the years support this thesis.

Zoominfo coverage counts as of September 10, 2019.

Finally, third-party datasets are licensed.  Content includes public company data (long a gap of both services), M&A details (added last year), government data sources, and social media feeds.

The database has grown to 20 million company profiles with 5 million C-level contacts, 16 million decision maker direct dials, and 20 million decision maker emails.  Globally, Zoominfo provides 66 million emails and 42 million direct dials.  They also maintain departed contact details to assist with data hygiene.

According to the Portland Business Journal, private equity firms TA Associates, The Carlyle Group and 22C Capital have invested at least $790 million in Zoominfo.  The PBJ also noted that Zoominfo is profitable.


Tomorrow, I will provide additional details around Zoominfo’s product packaging.

Artesian Solutions Q1 Strength

Artesian ENGAGE offers a rich set of high-precision sales triggers and compliance news.
Artesian ENGAGE offers a rich set of high-precision sales triggers and compliance news.

Compliance and social selling vendor Artesian Solutions announced its best quarter yet with Q1 (April – June) new business bookings up 290% year-over-year.  The firm also posted a 95% retention rate and an average net promoter score of +50.  The firm benefited from “strong growth” in its ENGAGE sales acceleration service and its ARCH compliance service released in June.  ARCH moves onboarding processing to front-line relationship managers with credit risk monitoring and Know Your Customer data sources.  ARCH is designed for banks and insurance companies and allows them to build compliance models which reflect institutional policies.

Artesian closed on a multi-year ARCH deal with Metro Bank along with several other financial institutions.

“We are off to an incredible start this year,” announced CEO Andrew Yates.  “Our strong Q1 performance is a continuation of the momentum that began a decade ago when we launched the first iteration of our award-winning insight and intelligence platform.  The growth in new business bookings and high retention rate of existing customers highlights the exceptional value Artesian brings to frontline teams, which was boosted further by the launch of ARCH, a revolution in front-line initial credit and risk decisioning.  Building on these results we will continue to invest in both ENGAGE and ARCH and have some exciting new enhancements which will soon be announced, extending our product and feature set and the overall Artesian experience.”

Social selling platform Artesian ENGAGE is available for the UK and US markets.  Along with company profiles, ENGAGE supports a broad set of high precision sales triggers and news stories.  ENGAGE intelligence is available through Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, browsers, and the Ready mobile app for news alerts and meeting planning and notes.  While Artesian continues to sign US clients, its strength is in the UK market.

ENGAGE news is English only gathered from global sites.  News coverage is particularly strong for the US, UK, Canada, and Singapore.

“The entire B2B landscape is undergoing a massive shift, where, increasingly, the key point of differentiation between competing brands is how they sell, not what they sell,” said Director of Marketing Stuart Newton.  “The companies that understand this and act quickly to change how they approach customer engagement will be the ones that reap the biggest rewards. Potential buyers are spending more and more time conducting research at arm’s length through digital channels and via word of mouth – front line teams have less time to create an impactful first-impression and when buyers do engage, they expect sellers to deliver value at every touchpoint instead of focusing on features and price alone.”

Drift & Cognism Make LinkedIn’s Hot Companies List

How Drift Automation Works (Source: Drift)

Congratulations to conversational marketing vendor Drift and sales intelligence vendor Cognism for making LinkedIn’s Top Startups: Hottest Companies to Work for Now lists.  

Boston-based Drift was ranked 46 in the US.  The firm has grown from 65 employees to 280 over the past year and plans to “double down” on its product and sales teams.

Yesterday, at their Hypergrowth conference, Drift announced the acquisition of Giant Otter, an AI and machine learning company, and the launch of Drift Automation.

Drift Automation understands the specific context of what someone is asking and can engage in conversations that go in a variety of directions. For the first time, this puts the customer is in control of the conversation — not the chatbot.

Lacey Berrien, Drift Senior Manager, Public Relations

Drift co-founder Elias Torres was impressed by Giant Otter which is based on research led by Dr. Jeff Orkin at the MIT Media Lab.

“When I met Jeff Orkin and he showed me what Giant Otter could do, I knew that I had seen the future of marketing automation,” said Torres. “We’ve been working on Drift Automation behind the scenes with early customers who have been seeing incredible results — including improvements in inbound sales velocity, pipeline and revenue growth, time back for the marketing team, and the ability to put the customer in control of the buying experience.”  

Cognism Refresh
Cognism Refresh

London-based Cognism was ranked 21 on the UK list with plans to open offices in the US and Singapore and triple its headcount to around 200 over the next year. Cognism products include

  • Cognism Prospector for lead list building, prospect research, and prospect/account current awareness.
  • Cognism Refresh for CRM data maintenance and enrichment.
  • Cognism Wealth list building and TAM analysis for financial services firms and wealth managers.

Cognism closed on its Series B back in July. According to CEO James Isilay, the firm has already “won significant business remotely” in both regions. Isilay noted that Asia is a particularly compelling market due to SaaS being relatively immature in the region.

Cognism is hosting its first RevenueAI user conference at the Science Museum London on 19 September. I will be speaking on Trends in Sales and Marketing Intelligence at the conference.

TechTarget Priority Engine Express

TechTarget Confirmed Projects

TechTarget is taking a soft launch approach to their new Priority Engine Express service for small software vendors and VARs with an early 2020 launch date.  CEO Michael Cotoia said the firm is building a platform which is “simple, streamlined, and scalable.”  Cotoia noted how smaller firms differ in sales and marketing requirements and capabilities from TechTarget’s enterprise clients:

Our smaller customers lack a lot of resources.  They don’t have a marketing automation [platform] many times.  They don’t have an integrated nurture campaign.  They need to understand and have a very friendly user interface, and they’re also very focused on identifying and using this solution as a sales use case with their inside sales reps and even their outside sales reps.  So what we’re really focused on is doing a very simple user interface, focus very much on a sales use case, and understand that we can help them build different types of lists and customized lists; for example, an ideal customer profile list, which is really going to focus on exactly their sweet spot so we can get them the right updates at the right time. They don’t have the resources; they don’t have the complexity.  If they need it simple, they want it towards sales use cases, and we’re learning a lot from that.

TechTarget CEO Michael Cotoia

Cotoia said that TechTarget is taking a market feedback approach to Express development.  As they engage with small customers, they are pausing during the sale to gather feedback to better understand what smaller firms are looking to do.  As they bring on early Express users, they are “tweaking, modifying, adjusting and getting ready to go into 2020.”  Cotoia called the initial feedback in this new market “very positive.”

TechTarget began building an SDR team two years ago to provide a team of appointment setters for their outside sales reps.  “We built that with a vision that we’re going to be looking at additional products that we are going to roll out,” said Cotoia.  “We want to make sure we have the resources on the bench” who are trained in the TechTarget methodology and ready to support new opportunities such as Express “so they are ready to make and take action when we see fit.”

TechTarget has raised the price for Priority Engine since it was launched a few years ago.  “We believe we have pricing power,” said Cotoia.  “We’ve had a couple of pricing increases year-over-year, and we believe we are in the best position to deliver real and observed purchase intent, make it very clear who’s in-market, by which technology segment, by which region and help our customers rank, prioritize and mobilize their sales and marketing efforts again, and we hope that creates some pricing leverage.”


Yesterday, I discussed TechTarget’s strong Q2. The above discussion was held in their Q2 2019 earnings announcement.

TechTarget Posts Strong Q2

Priority Engine provides rich company data including intent data (buying stage, competitors under evaluation, top trends), contacts, social links, and firmographics.

TechTarget posted a strong second quarter with revenues up 9% to $34.3 million.  Growth was led by their Priority Engine technology sales intelligence service which added 38 new customers in Q2 and grew revenue by 44%.  

Long-term contracts now comprise 33% of revenue.

TechTarget expanded its Total Addressable Market (TAM) from 1,500 Enterprise IT vendors to an additional 5,000 IT vendors consisting of small software companies and regional VARs.  The firm has been executing a soft rollout of Priority Engine Express to this expanded universe.

“We are still in the learning stage but the early feedback is that this customer segment is embracing the value proposition,” the firm told shareholders.  “We are increasing the number of salespeople dedicated to this product in the near-term and remain on track for the full product roll-out in 2020.”

“We added several enhancements to Priority Engine in May including Personalized Account Rankings that reflect organic research with TechTarget and direct engagement with the customer to improve marketing and sales effectiveness. Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) creation and filtering directly within Priority Engine to efficiently find, track and convert identified best-fit customers. Enhanced Qualification Intelligence showcases the key attributes that make accounts high priority targets, including buying stage, ICP match and if there is a confirmed project. Improved Engagement Signals show you precisely when accounts visit your website, click on your banners and/or download your content. Indicators of New and Recent Activities give sales users new reasons to call and help them engage the buying team with highly tailored outreach.”

TechTarget Q2 2019 Shareholder Letter

TechTarget provided Q3 revenue guidance between $33 and $34 million and annual guidance of $133 and $134 million.

The firm is celebrating its 20th anniversary this month and used the opportunity to credit its employees.  “We are incredibly grateful to our dedicated team of employees who are smart, innovative, motivated, passionate and hard-working. This team makes us look good and creates a win-win scenario for customers, investors, partners and the communities where we operate. We are especially proud of the transition that the Company has been able to make over the past 5 years from an online media company delivering quarterly marketing campaigns to a purchase intent data company selling annual subscriptions. We think most people would agree that is not an easy transition to make. We are very confident that our best days are ahead of us as we are now a leader in the fast growing data intelligence market.”

TechTarget added Christina Van Houten to its Board.  She currently serves as the Chief Strategy Officer for Mimecast Limited, a public email management company, where she is responsible for driving corporate development, product management, and market strategy.  She previously held senior positions at Infor, IBM Netezza, and Oracle.  Van Houten has “more than two decades of extensive, focused experience in marketing strategy with some of the world’s largest firms as well as significant corporate and business experience.”  She has an MBA from the Booth School (University of Chicago) and a BA from Georgetown.


Continue to Part II on Priority Engine Express and the expansion of their target market to include small software vendors and value-added resellers.

Cognism Series B

Cognism logo

Sales Acceleration Platform Cognism closed on a $10 million Series B from PeakSpan, bringing total funding to $16.5 million.  Previous investors included Oliver Wyman, South Central Ventures, LCIF, and Newable Ventures Limited.  The firm, founded in 2016, grew ARR over 4x last year.  

The funds will be deployed for opening local offices in Singapore and New York City as well as growing its machine learning team.  According to CEO James Isilay, the firm has already “won significant business remotely” in both regions.

Isilay called Asian expansion “particularly interesting” due to SaaS being relatively young in the market.  Cognism has already leveraged its partnership with investor Oliver Wyman to acquire two “blue-chip financial clients” in Asia.  “Investment here looks to be a promising tonic to the barriers to trade growth that are disrupting business in Europe and America.”

“Having been granted our first machine learning patent in December 2018, Cognism is now building a portfolio of IP which will drive the next evolution of sales and marketing technology,” said Isilay.

“Sales and marketing technology has been a core focus of ours for many years, arming us with a long-term perspective on the segment and a nuanced understanding of market trends and buyer dynamics that drive strategic value.  With such a proliferation of tools and technologies emerging across the marketing and sales landscape over the last decade, it’s no secret that go-to-market leaders today aren’t asking for more software tools – they’re demanding better outcomes.  Cognism’s pragmatic application of AI, which underpins the whole solution suite, is paving the way for a new category focused on turning disparate data points into coordinated insights to drive predictive and prescriptive lead generation and improve conversion across all engagements.”

▪ Matt Melymuka, Co-Founder and Partner at PeakSpan

The Cognism database spans 400 million contacts and 10 million businesses.  Cognism’s products support Prospecting, Sales Triggers, and CRM Enrichments.   CRM Connectors are available for Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, HubSpot, and PipeDrive.  A cadence tool sends templated emails through Gmail and Outlook.  

Marketing Features include A/B testing, Personas, ICP and TAM Analyses, and webform enrichment.

Cognism for Salesforce supports lead prospecting, contact enrichment, and ongoing data maintenance.