Sales Acceleration vendor SalesLoft has a unique business development promotion opportunity next Monday morning in Atlanta. They are offering a Mimosas and Implosions promo for folks who want to watch the Georgia Dome implosion from their 22nd floor outdoor patio.
They are opening their office to customers, prospects, job candidates, and partners. So if you are in the Atlanta area and have a relationship with SalesLoft, it sounds like a great way to get to know them better.
Doors open at 7 AM and the Dome drops at 7:30. [Registration]
Account Based Sales Development (ABSD) vendor Outreach, rolled out its latest capability, Sales Intelligence Tiles, which displays account intelligence from Owler, Twitter, and MapBox alongside account information from Salesforce and Outreach.
Three tile formats are supported
Engagement insights: a combination of insightful information including company news, local time and historical interactions with prospect/account to ensure the communication is effective
Prospect overview: everything from historical Outreach & Salesforce activity to custom fields
Account overview: displays account firmographics and prospect information
Users can customize the layouts to better meet their informational needs. Tiles may be moved and resized. Additional enhancements will roll out in the next few months including “partner integrations, new tiles, design updates, and new suggested layouts.” Layouts may be shared with co-workers. Other partners include DiscoverOrg, Datanyze, DocSend, and Sendgrid.
Outreach’s internal research found that reps saved five hours a week by leveraging tile insights.
Outreach recently began a beta program for their Chrome Extension which they call Window Mode. “This new experience is unlike any other chrome extension,” said Product Marketing Manager Rachel Siegel. “It removes the extension from on top of your window and creates a separate window that snaps perfectly to the side of your browser. The experience is lightning fast and immediately responsive to what you’re doing in the moment. Many of you likely switch through a number of different browser tabs as your job. Window Mode keeps up with your pace. You’ll find that it’s faster and immediately responsive to what you’re doing in the moment.”
Selling is hard – we know it’s more difficult than ever to connect with prospects and keep them engaged throughout the sales cycle. Sales technology has failed to deliver for reps, largely because it focuses on logging data and reporting on pipeline rather than helping reps to execute more of the right selling activities. Ultimately sales reps spend hours laboring on menial tasks. This has to stop. We’re on a mission to empower sales teams to more efficiently and effectively engage with prospects so they can predictability achieve revenue goals.
Outreach CEO Manny Medina
Outreach received a $30 million Round C a few weeks ago and continues to invest in tools for sales reps that assist them across the customer lifecycle. This vision goes beyond outbound communication unification and includes sales intelligence, recommendations, and workflow simplification.
“Outreach continues to tirelessly deliver the capabilities that solve business challenges,” blogged Siegel yesterday. “No longer are we solely investing in making SDRs and hunters efficient, we’re turning our eyes deeper into the customer lifecycle. At Outreach we see a future where every sales organization has a platform that helps their reps build a pipeline and closes that pipeline faster and more efficiently than ever before. The future is a platform that acts like a sales assistant, suggesting meeting times, entering data, creating action items, suggesting which personas to engage at what points in the deal cycle, and more.”
Outreach is unveiling its roadmap at their Unleash conference in Sonoma, CA this week.
Account Based Sales Development (ABSD) vendor Outreach announced a $30 million Series C round led by DJF. With the capital injection, Outreach raised its total funding to $60 million. The valuation was not disclosed. Other round participants included Four Rivers Group and existing investors Mayfield, MHS Capital, Microsoft Ventures and Trinity Ventures. Funds will be deployed towards additional product development, staffing, and marketing.
“The future of selling will be machines helping sales reps by removing the barriers of what bogs them down and empowering them to do their best work,” blogged Outreach CEO Manny Medina. “This round gives us the ability to make the required investments in machine learning and natural language processing. We’re doubling down in an area many in the market are talking about, but have yet to make a reality. With this investment, Outreach will continue to innovate to improve the day-to-day life of sales reps and their impact on the companies and communities they serve.”
Outreach helps automate, track, and analyze sales rep tasks across multiple communication channels including email, phone, and LinkedIn. Activities are tracked and synchronized with Salesforce, Gmail, and Exchange. Outreach supports over 1,200 sales teams including sales organizations at Adobe, Pandora, eBay, Marketo, and Zillow. The firm supports the efforts of over 15,000 sales reps.
Like many industries, technology is transforming sales from an art to a science. Sales is no longer about following up on inbound leads and hunting for a few big deals. It is about sales excellence – predictably executing the right selling activities at the right time.
Outreach CEO Manny Medina
The firm, founded in 2014, doubled its employment over the past year to 170. Outreach is looking to grow its product and engineering group from thirty to fifty staff before the end of 2017. Outreach is based in Seattle with offices in San Francisco and State College, PA. They recently opened an office in Tampa, Florida which has hired some of the talent from recently shuttered competitor KiteDesk.
While I have not heard the specific rationale behind the KiteDesk shutdown, a former CxO at the firm suggested that they lacked the capital to compete against well-funded competitors such as Outreach and SalesLoft.
Along with the funding round, Outreach announced that DFJ Growth Partner Sam Fort has been added to Outreach’s Board. “The opportunity for a platform that simplifies and automates the sales process is massive and we are thrilled to have Outreach join our portfolio,” said Fort.
DiscoverOrg released its latest Account Based Sales Development (ABSD) connector with the rollout of a Tellwise integration. Joint customers will be able to pass DiscoverOrg intelligence to Tellwise. The Tellwise service supports a broad set of ABSD features along with Salesforce, MS Dynamics, Chrome, Outlook, and Gmail integrations. DiscoverOrg is their first content provider integration, but they plan to add others in the future.
Tellwise was founded four years ago by former Microsoft engineers. According to their CEO Conrad Bayer, their goal is to unify sales communications across channels with respect to user experience, flow, data synchronization, and analytics. The long term mission is to create an omni-channel platform designed for the seller that makes them more effective through higher volume and better insights.
Much of the activity within Tellwise is managed through a Google Chrome extension. This allows users to operate within other platforms for most of the service’s functionality. Features include a phone dialer, email templates, prospect chat, presentation tools, and an activity feed. The system creates personal landing pages for each linked document, allowing Tellwise to track attachments. These links also provide a mechanism for sending an on-demand chat message to a prospect or for presenting materials. The system notifies sales reps when documents are being read, providing an opportunity to chat with the prospect or share a presentation.
“Productivity for outbound sales reps is driven by their ability to get accurate contact data and an effective way to communicate and measure activity with those contacts. That is what is so exciting about this partnership between DiscoverOrg and Tellwise. We are solving two of the most challenging sales problems at the same time. DO provides world class data and Tellwise provides a world class communication platform right from within DiscoverOrg. So far, we have seen this new integration double the effectiveness of our mutual customers,” said Bayer.
Tellwise has a novel mechanism for transferring data from DiscoverOrg to its platform and CRMs. Instead of downloading a file or running a batch synch, Tellwise users open up the Chrome Browser extension and the current prospecting list is automatically populated as a list within the Chrome extension. Users can then act on individual leads or take group actions. It is only when one or multiple records have an action taken (e.g. Place call, Send batch email) that records are synched between DiscoverOrg, Tellwise, and the CRM.
The combination of Tellwise and DiscoverOrg’s technologies enables SDRs to have access to highly accurate contact information and intelligence on their prospects at exactly the right moment they need to engage with them – allowing for more meaningful connections to occur, in the most appropriate forums, and before competitors can get their foot in the door
DiscoverOrg CEO Henry Schuck
Unlike other ABSD vendors, Tellwise does not have a full service cadence/sequence tool, but it has a Tasks tool in beta which provides multi-platform scheduled activities. The service also lacks a transcription service for calls, but they are working on transcription and sentiment analysis for later this year.
Tellwise pricing ranges between $29 and $79 per month.
DiscoverOrg also offers ABSD partnerships with SalesLoft and Outreach. According to DiscoverOrg, Sales Development Reps can “build highly-segmented prospect lists based on their list of target accounts and buyer personas and push those contacts into streamlined and automated sequences of interactions with their prospects.”
KiteDesk added a set of 2,200 searchable technologies across 525,000 companies to its FIND prospecting service. Screenable technologies may be used for competitive, complementary, and adjacent / enabling technology targeting. Along with technographics, users may screen by firmographics, department, keyword, and job title across multiple vendors. The technographics are accompanied by contact information including email, direct dial, and social links.
KiteDesk marries their FIND Account Based Sales Prospecting engine with their FLOW Account Based Sales Engagement platform. Thus, both list building and lead engagement (e.g. workflow, dialer, email, calendaring, analytics) are managed from the same platform.
“We’ve taken what is already widely considered the pre-eminent lead generation software tool and made it even better,” said Eric Quanstrom, CMO at KiteDesk. “Discovering who you should be targeting is the most time-consuming, yet important part of outbound lead generation. Pinpoint data is the very heart of prospecting effectively.”
Other recent additions to the FIND service include auto-preview which displays dynamic data provider counts as a search is built and identification of multi-site vs. single location companies.
Prior to SalesLoft’s Rainmaker user conference, their VP of Product Marketing Sean Kester provided me with a demo and overview of the enhancements to their Account Based Sales Engagement Platform. The key product announcement is their new Live Call Studio which allows managers to monitor outbound calls. The firm will also be demonstrating enhanced Salesforce and Gmail connectors which support sales engagement intelligence and the Twilio dialer.
Amongst their new partners are Zoominfo, TalkIQ, and Vidyard which will provide company and contact details, call transcription, and video messaging services.
The other new feature is a “Draft on Behalf” service that allows reps to create emails to be sent from executive inboxes.
SalesLoft closed on a $15M Round B last month. The firm said that the funds would be used towards product, marketing, and opening an office in San Francisco. The 2017 product focus includes improved orchestration between sales, marketing, and supporting executives; enhanced insights and reports; expanded governance tools; role based workflow assignments; greater connectivity; and enhanced analytics.
Call Studio provides live coaching and feedback to help managers shape a consistent message. Call Studio assists with new hire training as well as upsell and cross-sell training for more experienced sales staff. The Studio displays a set of conversational tiles which track all current calls along with duration and participants. A manager can listen in on any call and provide feedback afterwards, whisper advice into the rep’s ear during the call, or join the conversation. Managers and trainers do not need to be at the same location as the Sales Development Reps (SDRs). Conversely, reps can digitally raise their hand if they need assistance and will feel more confident as they ramp up.
Kester noted that “Front line sales is one of the most difficult positions in a business. Live Call Studio reduces on-boarding time, coaching time, and increases rep effectiveness with the ability to coach from anywhere. Live coaching can quickly identify learning and advancement opportunities so that reps can stay motivated and be more productive.”
Call Studio will officially be launched at their Rainmaker conference during the first week of March and is currently live at ten accounts.
Draft on Behalf
SalesLoft will also be unveiling an as yet unnamed “Draft on behalf ” service which allows sales reps to write an email to be sent from company execs. The note includes subject, message, and recipients. The rep also provides an explanation of the request.
Once written, the CxO is sent an email with an overview of the request and a button to open the message. Executives can also view pending messages stored in a “Requests” tab queue.
The “Draft on behalf” feature will initially be available in Gmail with plans to extend the service to Outlook down the road.
Recently enhanced connectors include SalesLoft Connect in Gmail and Salesforce. The Gmail Connect tool displays SalesLoft in a new right-handed sidebar. SDRs can click-to-dial from within Gmail and view the live feed for the prospect. Other SalesLoft Connect for Gmail features include contact search, launching emails, and adding the message to SFDC. The contact profile includes a set of functions including
Add or remove from a cadence (templated SDR multi-channel messaging workflows)
View recent notes and activity
Flag as Do Not Contact
Link to social profiles
Open and edit SalesLoft profiles
View additional contact information
Connect in Salesforce is both Classic and Lightning-ready providing access to SalesLoft Cadences within SFDC. Features include the contact profile, SalesLoft Dialer, Cadence view, prospect activity view, and bi-directional synching between SalesLoft and Salesforce.
Finally, SalesLoft will be showing off three new ecosystem partners at Rainmaker. SalesLoft looks for partners that will offer a freemium strategy within their service, so that even SMBs can obtain benefits from SalesLoft partnerships.
Vidyard supports quick custom videos which help “humanize” SDR emails along with video playlists. Thus, an SDR could attach two short demos and a personalized introductory message. According to Kester, “adding a highly engaging video thumbnail to your email cadence in SalesLoft will help your emails stand out, boost click through rates, and send response rates soaring.”
Vidyard tracks which videos were watched and notifies sales reps.
Free Vidyard allows users access to all their features with limitations on the total number of videos hosted in their libraries along with some sharing limitations. The paid version offers a more robust library, organization, and hosting feature set.
TalkIQ provides integrated call transcription. Features include a summary tab, cross-call searching, audio clips, and coaching commentary. Premium features include analytics and admin-defined algorithms that automatically pull calls based on specific criteria. These calls will be displayed in a premium dashboard.
From within Chrome, users will have access to Zoominfo’s ReachOut connector which provides in-context account and contact information to SalesLoft. For example, an SDR could identify the perfect contact in LinkedIn, use the ReachOut extension to obtain contact information, and send company and contact details to SalesLoft to begin a cadence.
Last month, Account Based Sales Engagement vendor SalesLoft closed on a $15M Round B twenty-two months after closing on a $10.15M Series A. The new round, which valued the firm at $100 million, was led by David Cummings, the founder of Pardot, and his Atlanta Ventures. SalesLoft chose to work with its existing Atlanta-based investor team. Cummings chipped in $10 million with Spinnaker Investments and Emergence Capital contributing their pro-rata shares.
By extending Round B amongst current investors, SalesLoft was able to “keep our board the same, move fast to close, and get back to the work of serving our customers immediately,” said CEO Kyle Porter.
Heading into the new year, our growth left us with enough cash in the bank and a modest enough burn rate to keep running for the next few years. But we’re on a mission to transform the sales industry and be the clear No. 1 in our category. Achieving that mission requires additional investment in the platform, innovation, and our community so we deliver significant value to our customers. For that reason, we decided it was time to double down on our market and put more capital to work.
CEO Kyle Porter
The round and funding strategy were proposed by Cummings. “David [Cummings] is a close friend, mentor, investor, board member, and advisor who has been on the journey with SalesLoft since the very beginning,” said Porter. “David’s career journey had imprinted on him the value in being a market leader and he recognized the magnitude of the sales engagement opportunity.”
While the firm’s burn rate was low enough to hold off on another round for a few years, “we’re on a mission to transform the sales industry and be the clear #1 in our category,” blogged Porter. “Achieving that mission requires additional investment in the platform, innovation, and our community so we deliver significant value to our customers. For that reason, we decided it was time to double down on our market and put more capital to work.”
SalesLoft maintains a level of transparency that exceeds most companies with detailed discussions around funding, corporate culture, and product strategy. While most companies provide pro-forma press releases around funding announcements, SalesLoft CEO Kyle Porter wrote detailed blogs around both rounds and presented a case study on his decision to abandon SalesLoft’s successful Prospector service while Cadence was still in its formative stage.
The funding will be used towards product, marketing, and opening an office in San Francisco. The 2017 product focus includes improved orchestration between sales, marketing, and supporting executives; enhanced insights and reports; expanded governance tools; role based workflow assignments; and enhanced analytics. Furthermore, “SalesLoft will be at your fingertips at all times, delivering core applications to wherever your reps live in everyday, like Gmail, Outlook, Dynamics, and Salesforce.”
SalesLoft plans to continued expansion of its ecosystem which already includes a broad set of partners:
Although they did not detail their 2017 partner list, the firm named Vidyard and DocSend as 2017 connectors when I was profiling their service for my book. Vidyard provides video integration into emails with the customer service rep option to record a quick intro. DocSend provides intra-document tracking tools and analytics which display information on what sections were viewed and for how long.
In 2016, SalesLoft trebled its Annualized Run Rate (ARR) while phasing out its $4 million Prospector Service and expanding the Cadence account based sales offering. Over this time, the Cadence product increased its ARR by 5,000 percent (from less than $200, 000). Cadence now has over 1,000 customers.
SalesLoft has grown from 5 employees in early 2014 to 125 with plans to add 85 headcount in the coming months.
The firm is focused on “serving the customer,” said Porter. “It was our intention to build a company based entirely on a set of core values and to this date, it’s been the best decision we’ve ever made.”
Porter lists the firms core values as
Put Customers First
Focus on Results
Glass Half Full
Bias Toward Action
Team over Self
Focusing on values allows us to be intentional about our behavior on a daily basis. This sets the foundation for healthy teams to establish trust, inspire growth, and achieve something special together.
CEO Kyle Porter
While many companies view culture as corporate window dressing around perks and office space, SalesLoft COO Rob Forman defines culture as “our values, consistently applied.”