ZoomInfo Workflows Enhanced (Part III)

Continuation from yesterday’s article about ZoomInfo Workflows (Part I).

ZoomInfo hinted at an even broader vision of automated lead qualification and workflows in a recent blog that listed four categories of qualifying data:

Source: ZoomInfo, “How To Automate Lead Qualification for Increased Response Rates,” March 8, 2021 Blog.

ZoomInfo does not support programmatic advertising, chatbots, or Slack notifications, so there is significant running room for product development, particularly around expanded intent.  For example, a recent study by XANT found that inbound lead response rates decay quickly, but reps fail to respond promptly, and many fall between the cracks.  The study analyzed three years of inbound leads at over 400 companies.  XANT looked at 5.7 million inbound leads and found that 57.1% of first call attempts took place after a week or more, and only 0.1% of inbound leads were responded to within five minutes.  However, firms that responded within those first five minutes had an 8X conversion rate versus later return calls.

“Maybe we simply didn’t realize what we were leaving on the table,” wrote XANT.  “Maybe we over-rotated on targeted ABM strategies at the expense of speed-to-lead.  Marketing automation shouldn’t replace meaningful and quick sales engagement.”

XANT proposes a second problem that slows lead response times: the manual assignment of leads to individuals, resulting in two sets of delays – the lead routing process and the sales reps’ ability to respond quickly when a batch of leads is handed to them.

Tying inbound leads (emails, webforms, chatbots) to workflows is the next step beyond enrichment.  It allows for immediate lead scoring, assignment, and routing decisions, speeding up the response rate while determining each lead’s best course of action.  The Trigger / Filter / Action methodology for intent and event-based leads fits perfectly with these other inputs.  Furthermore, Chatbots and FormComplete often gather a few extra qualifying details that would be filter inputs.

“There is perhaps no greater need than for sellers to be calling on the right people at the right time,” said SalesTech analyst Nancy Nardin.  “Fortunately, the level of accuracy and timeliness of data has improved by leaps and bounds with the emergence of AI, and improved data collection, cleansing, and enrichment.”

ZoomInfo Workflows Enhanced (Part II)

Continuation from yesterday’s article about ZoomInfo Workflows.

For over a decade, Sales Intelligence vendors such as Dun & Bradstreet, InsideView, Artesian Solutions, and ZoomInfo have offered sales triggers based upon executive changes, funding events, M&A, etc..  D&B Hoovers, along with many European vendors that process registered filings data, includes data change alerts (e.g., credit score change, revenue growth) and registered filings.  As vendors are now adding in visitor intelligence and intent signals, there is the risk of quickly overwhelming sales reps with alerts.  And since most vendors do not yet offer workflow solutions for filtering and automating sales activities, there is a strong likelihood that reps begin to view these alerts as noise instead of actionable signals.  The more generalized the signal (e.g., website visits), the greater the possibility of signals being considered spam. 

To further confuse things, Sales Engagement Platforms (SEPs) have emerged as sales automation platforms, but they are only loosely tied to a few of the sales intelligence vendors.  In many cases, the functionality is simply Send to SEP functionality.

ZoomInfo and Vainu (see 3/21 issue) now tie together triggers and actions subject to filters.  While there is still a risk that reps are overwhelmed (e.g., too many automated cadences being sent to SEPs), the filters help mitigate the risk and ensure that activity is focused on an organization’s best prospects and tied to event-specific messaging. 

For technology sales, ZoomInfo offers technographic changes and Scoops.  The Scoops dataset is gathered from official data (e.g., public filings, PPP loans), surveys, and in-house research teams.  Daily, ZoomInfo reaches out to contacts in its database to gather market intelligence about projects and the challenges they face in their department.  As an incentive, ZoomInfo offers an Amazon gift card or charitable donation to each respondent.  The responses are the basis of many of their Scoops.

“We are constantly evaluating new sources and pieces of information that can provide value to our customers in the form of Scoops.  Last year, our Scoop number increased greatly because of new processes and expanded information coverage, including the addition of Scoops directly related to PPP loan recipients. Through continued innovation and expansion, we anticipate that our Scoops volume will continue to increase over time.  We have several in-house research teams dedicated to various types of Scoop coverage, and we utilize many of the same sources to gather Scoops that are laid out on our B2B Data Sources webpage, including updates from leadership webpages, news monitoring, public filings, and company-issued announcements.”

ZoomInfo Communications Director Steve Vittorioso

The Scoop volume doubled to 917,000 events in 2020.

While the primary Workflows use cases are focused on revenue acceleration, Workflows may also be used for executive recruitment.

Admins have an approval queue for workflows created by non-admins.

Admins can edit, clone, run, or delete Workflows.  They can also create workflows for non-admins or permit non-admins to create workflows subject to admin approval. 

Non-admins have access to fewer integrations, cannot assign workflows to peers, and are subject to lower export limits.

Workflows do not support FormComplete, ZoomInfo’s webform, but the functionality is on the product roadmap.


Continue to Part III.

ZoomInfo Workflows Enhanced

ZoomInfo Workflows are natural language statements that follow a trigger/filter/action process.

ZoomInfo rolled out an upgraded Workflows product for automating trigger-based tasks.  The service sports a simplified natural-language UI for building workflows “in ways that feel conversational, simple, and secure.”

ZoomInfo Senior Product Director Apparao Karri explained that Workflows are at the intersection of go-to-market data availability and sales automation, calling it “the long tail of GTM automation.”

Continued Karri, “Intelligent Automation is a key differentiator for businesses, and the underlying technology stack is mature and ready to deliver at scale.  ZoomInfo Workflows is a product built on this framework to improve productivity, reduce lost opportunities, and bring consistency to the go-to-market motions.”

Product Marketing Director Thad Peterson contrasted Workflows with Marketing Automation Platforms:

“Marketing automation has existed for many years, but often on a generic playing field.  For example, when visitors fill out a form on a company website, marketers can drop their information into a sequence or a campaign in their CRM.  But those campaigns are limited because a form-fill mechanism doesn’t provide targeted and specific information for each of those prospective customers. Now we live in a world where individual sales reps can create hyper-targeted campaigns based on nearly every imaginable scenario.”

ZoomInfo Product Marketing Director Thad Peterson

The basic structure of a Workflow is triggers, filters, and actions.  Triggers are business events detected by ZoomInfo and include ZoomInfo WebSights (website visitor intelligence), technographic changes, Clickagy Streaming Intent, fundings, and ZoomInfo Scoops (e.g., projects, PPP funding).  Triggers may also be created from saved searches that identify new companies or contacts that meet the saved criteria.

Triggers act as signals subject to pre-defined filters.  The filters are conditions that must be met for an action to be taken.  They can be based upon ZoomInfo or Salesforce criteria.  For example, presence in an ABM list, meeting firmographic criteria, assigned to a rep in Salesforce, or not present in Salesforce.  Actions dictate the Workflow response and include sending emails, assigning contacts, creating records, or kicking off sales flows (cadences) in ZoomInfo Engage, SalesLoft, or Outreach.  Marketing actions can be processed through HubSpot, Pardot, Marketo, and Eloqua.

Actions include a processing frequency (e.g., daily, weekly) and limits on the number of exported records.  The limit works as a throttle so that reps are not overwhelmed with too many leads.  It also prevents a workflow from using up too many ZoomInfo credits.  Some actions have sub-actions associated with platforms (e.g. set campaign or cadence / sequence / flow).

Filters can also be employed for territory assignment, ensuring that the activity is routed to the proper sales rep.  As ZoomInfo has one of the deepest pools of professional contacts with emails and direct-dial phones, they can activate sales and marketing activity from anonymous account-level signals for targeted functions and levels.

“If businesses want to scale quickly, they can’t become mired in day-to-day tasks that can easily be automated,” said ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck.  “ZoomInfo’s Workflows eliminates redundant, repetitive tasks and helps teams to focus on the human side of closing business by establishing strong relationships with prospects and customers.”


Continue to Part II.

Leadspace – ZoomInfo Partnership

Leadspace and ZoomInfo inked a strategic partnership to distribute ZoomInfo data through the Leadspace Customer Data Platform.  The platform-level integration lets customers activate ZoomInfo data and intelligence from within Leadspace.  The Leadspace CDP is a data-agnostic platform that supports predictive scoring, ICP analytics, look-a-like modeling, intent signaling, and custom buyer personas and scores.

The partnership is Generally Available to joint customers.

Leadspace also offers robust data hygiene and enrichment based upon the Reachforce platform it acquired several years ago.  Other tools include web forms, marketing automation and SFDC enrichment, and custom audiences for programmatic marketing.

“We talk to many B2B companies that work with ZoomInfo and see tremendous value in their intelligence solutions,” said Leadspace CTO Amnon Mishor. “We’ve partnered with ZoomInfo on some strategic clients and proven the added benefits of the Leadspace platform in being able to unify other data and intelligence with the ZoomInfo data, then activate it across channels. It’s really the best of all worlds for our customers.”

While both companies have strong matching capabilities, Leadspace is performing real-time matching between the two platforms.  Initially, the partnership supports company and contact enrichment, but additional datasets such as technographics and intent are planned.

“Every B2B enterprise can benefit from the new Leadspace and ZoomInfo integration,” said ZoomInfo CRO Chris Hays. “We believe making our data available through a leading customer data platform (CDP) for unification and activation is the new frontier for B2B sales and marketing, and it’s a great way for customers to see even greater return on their investment in data.”

Both companies have performed well during the pandemic.  ZoomInfo IPO’d in June and has had several strong quarters since going public, growing revenue 62% last year.

Leadspace closed on a $46 million Series D earlier this month.  It doubled its customer base over the past two years and grew revenue 151% between 2016 and 2019, placing the firm at 2,681 on the 2020 Inc. 5000 list.

Zoominfo Targeted Audiences (Part II)

Zoominfo launched their new Targeted Audiences service to support programmatic advertising against their universe of B2B account and contact data. [Part I]


ZoomInfo employs signature-block mining, natural language processing, machine learning, and email verification to build and maintain their Data Cloud.  They also recently acquired EverString to augment their firmographic depth and field fill rates for 95 million companies.  Targeting against the Zoominfo Data Cloud offers “campaigns with unmatched precision and enhanced performance.”

“Digital agencies and marketers typically face challenges in collecting high-quality, complete B2B audience data,” contrasted ZoomInfo. “Most widely available contact information for companies and their employees is either inaccurate, incomplete, or outdated, which means many digital agencies and marketers deliver their messages to the wrong people altogether.”

“What’s common knowledge to those in the industry — but not to a bright-eyed data guy like me — is that advertising audiences aren’t engineered to be precise.  Quite the opposite, actually: This space is all about volume and audience expansion through inferences, and modeled data has taken over.”

ZoomInfo SVP of Innovation and Data R&D Derek Smith

Marketers can also build custom audiences from over three hundred demographic and firmographic selects, including funding data, benefits data (licensed from GlassDoor), event participation, banking variables, technographics, and Fortune 500/1000 flags.  Biographic variables include function, level, and title/keyword.

Targeting is most effective for the North American market because ZoomInfo is limited in the number of legally gathered and stored identifiers for EU citizens due to GDPR.

“Our product is unlike any other for two reasons. First, we’ve amassed a treasure trove of emails, phone numbers, and titles. Second, we’ve architected our company data to let you identify companies with a level of granularity that significantly eclipses the competition,” said Derek Smith, SVP of Innovation and Data R&D. “Was this always intentional? Of course not.  But unbeknownst to me, our data became tailor-made for advertising activation as a result of other projects at ZoomInfo.”

As a new offering, Targeted Audiences should be viewed as a solution for building precise B2B audiences and activating them via LiveRamp.  With nearly 100 million targetable professionals, 500 million identifiers, and 300+ selects, ZoomInfo can build very focused audiences.  However, there are some gaps.  Targeted Audiences does not offer any campaign analytics, creative management, social marketing, retargeting functionality, or intent-based targeting.

“Targeted Audiences allows marketers to build strategic campaigns based on contact and company information and creates new levels of granularity in B2B audience data that have never before existed on the market,” said ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck.

Targeted Audiences is a standalone offering.  Marketers and agencies can test out the service on a few audiences before signing a volume contract.  The fifty off-the-shelf audiences are priced at $1 CPM ($1 for 1,000 advertising exposures).  Custom Audiences begin at $2.75 CPM, but the price falls with volume commitments.

Zoominfo Targeted Audiences

ZoomInfo moved deeper into the marketing and advertising space with the launch of Targeted Audiences.  The newly unveiled B2B data service “gives digital agencies and marketers the ability to target their ideal customers with unprecedented accuracy.”  Targeted Audiences are built from the ZoomInfo Data Cloud, which includes 500 million emails and phone numbers for nearly 100 million professional contacts.

ZoomInfo was in the advertising space in its early years but spun off its Bizo platform in 2008.  At the time, CEO Yonatan Stern said, “We realized our business information index allowed marketers to deliver targeted online ads at a level never before seen.”  

Since then, ZoomInfo has acquired a deeper set of contacts and richer firmographics, technographics, funding data, benefits plans, and event data, supporting superior targeting precision.

Unfortunately, Bizo was acquired by LinkedIn in 2014 for $175 million but folded 18 months later when LinkedIn balked at the integration cost.  

Targeted Audiences should be viewed as a new market entry for the firm, but one that supported a $175 million opportunity back in 2014.  The October acquisition of Clickagy fueled this market entry as Clickagy intent data is deployed programmatically via data marketplaces.

“With the team at Clickagy now on the ZoomInfo team, our familiarity with the advertising space accelerated from 0 to 60 mph almost overnight.  The combination of our massive Data Cloud with a select few experts in advertising data allowed us to quickly discover the path to making our data actionable,” blogged Derek Smith, SVP of Innovation and Data R&D.

ZoomInfo launched the programmatic service with over fifty pre-packaged audiences “built on advanced demographic and firmographic data.”  ZoomInfo offered several examples outside of their core technology and business services customer base:

  • Educational institutions can target individual contributors and managers employed by firms with tuition reimbursement.
  • Optometrists can market to employees of companies with vision plans.
  • Luxury brands can reach out to C-level execs at firms with more than one hundred employees.
  • Financial advisory firms can target director-level employees of firms that recently went public.

ZoomInfo is passing audience identifiers to the LiveRamp data connectivity platform.  LiveRamp maps identifiers to channels, screens, and devices for media activation.  Additional partner platforms will be brought online in the coming weeks.


Continue to Part II.

Zoominfo: Talk Data to Me

Zoominfo launched a podcast series called Talk Data to Me and posted its first two shows: Mike Volpe of Lola discusses surviving the pandemic as a business travel startup, and Debbie Tang of Bridge Partners examines the increase in Diversity and Inclusion hiring at Fortune 500 companies.  The series is hosted by Sam Balter, ZoomInfo’s Director of Editorial and Thought Leadership, and Stephanie Tonneson, ZoomInfo’s Audio Producer and Marketing Coordinator

“Talk Data to Me brings data to life, so to speak,” said Balter. “Data, especially in B2B, can be complex and challenging, but we make it accessible by talking with leaders who can share the stories behind the digits. During the conversations, our assumptions are challenged, our biases are confronted, and, at times, our interpretations are conflicting. This messy process of theory, research, and revision is how we arrive at insights. This is what it means when someone wants to talk data.”

Other B2B Data vendors with podcasts include

RingLead also offers a set of interviews (Talk Data to Me) that include an archive of video snippets where the vendors answer questions about themselves. If you filter for “Meet the Vendors,” you will find a dozen interviews around their partners in the DataExchange.

ZoomInfo Acquires EverString (Part III)

Company counts will hit 100M once the Everstring Business Graph is incorporated into their coverage.

Last week, ZoomInfo announced that it was acquiring Business Graph vendor EverString to grow its company coverage five-fold.


ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck noted that large enterprises license and integrate a broad set of content from many vendors.  They struggle to “stitch” all these disparate content sets together via “a complicated system relying on data analysts, engineers, and product managers.”  Furthermore, different analysts manage datasets for other countries, further complicating the situation.  “Each one restarts a process of understanding the nuances and integrating, normalizing, matching, managing, and maintaining that unique data source.”

This data sourcing and loading process is “inefficient, costly, and introduces a complex web of operational challenges and compliance vulnerabilities.”  Data ends up being siloed and fragmented, reducing its value to the organization.  “It has to be integrated, unified, validated, cleansed, enriched, deduplicated, and delivered to the right people and systems, at the right time, in the right form for it to unlock the value it was intended to create.”

Shuck argues that other vendors overly complicate data projects and offer expensive consultations and complex solutions.  ZoomInfo’s vision is to be the “first unified, single source of truth for sales, marketing, and all other go-to-market functions.”

“With the data from EverString, ZoomInfo will provide data on virtually every high-level parent company, local parent company, franchise, and satellite office in America.  This broader data set enables better search, scoring, and account assignment, and provides greater access to buyers and buying centers.”

CEO Henry Schuck

“The combined ZoomInfo and EverString data asset will be unparalleled in the marketplace,” said EverString CEO J.J. Kardwell.  “We’re excited to join ZoomInfo and work together to bring sellers and marketers the most extensive company and professional data that will help make their go-to-market motions even more effective and efficient.”

Kardwell will serve as an advisor to ZoomInfo and will remain with ZoomInfo through the transition.

ZoomInfo is moving to combine the two databases quickly.  As it has a track record of acquiring and rapidly integrating datasets, the merged database should be available soon (ZoomInfo declined to provide a target date).  In the meantime, customers can already enrich data via a superset of the EverString and ZoomInfo databases. Financial terms were not disclosed, but ZoomInfo indicated the deal was not expected to have a material effect on the fourth quarter.

ZoomInfo Acquires EverString (Part II)

On Friday, I began coverage of ZoomInfo’s acquisition of EverString. Continuing with part II…


Over the past few years, ZoomInfo has been rapidly building its go-to-market intelligence through acquisitions and capital investment.  Initially, ZoomInfo (then called DiscoverOrg) rolled up competitors iProfile and RainKing, but in February 2019, they acquired ZoomInfo, a leading global contact information source.  The firm also managed two tuck-ins last year: NeverBounce email validation and Komiko Inbox AI.

After going public in June, ZoomInfo acquired intent data service Clickagy in October before acquiring Everstring.

ZoomInfo is exceptionally strong across many of the core B2B data categories, including

  • Global contacts (e.g. emails, direct dials, phone numbers, bios, social links, job function, and job level)
  • Technographics (e.g. vendors, products, projects, IT professionals)
  • Intent data (1st Party IP-matching and the recently acquired Clickagy real-time intent signals)
  • Sales Triggers (e.g. M&A, Exec Changes, Partnerships)
  • Org Charts (human-verified and modeled)

However, ZoomInfo has lagged behind other vendors in firmographics and linkage.  The Everstring acquisition plugs this gap across core firmographics, SMBs, and company linkages, putting the firm in a stronger sales intelligence, digital marketing, and B2B DaaS position.  The expanded company universe will significantly improve ZoomInfo’s match rates for batch, real-time, and continuous data enrichment.

In a multinational telecom provider test, the match rate doubled to 98% due to three factors: M/L-powered matching, historical matching against outdated records, and record completeness.

“EverString’s machine learning powered entity resolution (aka matching) algorithms are designed to accept and process multiple identifying inputs from a customer’s file, such as phone number and address, alongside the company name and website, improving the likelihood of returning a matching record.”

ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck

Maintaining a historical file of inactive and out of date records provides significant value when batch processing enterprise records sitting in CRMs and MAPs.  Much of this legacy data is bad, but without a reference file with historical data (e.g. inactive and closed companies, former addresses, FKAs), operations teams don’t know which records are defunct businesses.

Everstring has nearly 100% fill rates on core firmographic fields such as employee count, revenue, and industry codes. The expanded firmographics improve field fill rates, lead scoring, lead routing, and analytics (e.g. ICP, TAM, segmentation).

Nevertheless, ZoomInfo has a few remaining gaps around public company financials and filings (e.g. SEC, Companies House, UCC) that would hold them back at financial services companies and European firms.  Everstring does ingest filing data (e.g. Secretary of State incorporations, UCC liens, 5500 ERISA filings with the Department of Labor, federal contract bids, OSHA, fleet data, UK Companies House) when building its business graph, but source data viewing is often required.


Continue to Part III.

ZoomInfo Acquires EverString

ZoomInfo continues building up its data assets with the acquisition of EverString, expanding Zoominfo’s coverage of companies and contacts.  EverString employs machine learning, deep learning, artificial intelligence, and natural language processing to build profiles on 100 million companies, 120 million locations, and 70 million business professionals. Data are ingested from both online and offline content.  The expanded company universe is five-times larger than ZoomInfo’s current company universe, with roughly 30 million international profiles.

EverString also provides ZoomInfo with over one million linkages.  “This additional data gives sellers and marketers across all verticals better access and visibility to their total addressable markets, more complete enrichment results, and additional points of contact at their target accounts.”

ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck described the combined EverString and ZoomInfo data cloud as the “first-ever business identity graph of its size with a level of accuracy and completeness purpose-built to help go-to-market teams identify actual buying centers rather than legal entities with no purchasing power.”

Along with corporate hierarchies, EverString expands ZoomInfo’s intelligence concerning website redirects, legal entities, and aliases.  Firmographics include sizing data, URLs, social links, contact information, year founded, DBAs, FKAs, and long-tail industry keywords.

“The acquisition of EverString gives ZoomInfo a comprehensive business data graph, providing the foundation needed for enterprises to identify their total universe of customers and prospects, define their ideal profiles, leverage granular keywords and attributes to predict success, and focus their go-to-market motions.”

Director of Communications Steve Vittorioso.

Headquartered in San Mateo, EverString was founded in 2012 and has 50 employees.  It made the 2020 Inc. 5000 list with three-year revenue growth of 112%. Customers include Snowflake, FedEx, Nokia, Seagate, and Staples. 

EverString’s DaaS platform delivers firmographics, technographics, contacts, machine learning insights, and intent signals.  

EverString also offers predictive analytics which will be incorporated into the ZoomInfo platform.  Other functionality includes similar companies, ICP modeling, and TAM modeling.


Continue to Part II.