Next Quarter, an AI-based Account Planning solution, partnered with Bombora to deliver third-party intent data to its Fortune 500 Clients. Next Quarter licensed Bombora’s Company Surge data to power its White Space offering. Next Quarter recommends the next best product to sell, “along with a guided path to uncover new growth opportunities.”
Bombora’s intent file helps identify in-market customers, including upsell and cross-sell opportunities, inside of Salesforce. Churn risk is also assessed.
Engagement (activity) data is gathered from Salesforce, so Next Quarter offers recommendations based on Bombora intent and account conversations.
Features include Account Chatter, Whitespace Analysis, Relationship Maps, Competitor Assessment, Target Setting, Scenario Planning & Gap Mitigation.
Next Quarter emphasizes white space opportunities at current accounts for B2B and B2G sales. Target industries include technology, pharma, management consulting, manufacturing, and Aerospace & Defense.
“Sales reps can uncover potential white space opportunities and develop tailored solutions to meet their needs by building strong relationships with current customers and understanding their business goals,” blogged the firm. “Next Quarter gathers data from your historical sales trends for similar customers. Using AI algorithms, we provide a score (NQ Score) by combining historical sales data with intent data that identifies the top recommended products or services to sell.”
Users can perform scenario analyses that identify and present next best product recommendations based on similar customer groupings.
“Next Quarter is committed to helping customers increase revenue,” said Next Quarter CEO Rahul Shah. “By combining our account planning solution with Bombora’s Intent data, we can offer a unique competitive edge to help drive account growth through AI-based recommendations leveraging intent. Next Quarter’s Account Growth module is an AI-based account planning solution that identifies new opportunities, finds decision-makers and influencers, and suggests guided next steps for sales teams to grow existing accounts.”
Next Quarter, formerly ForecastEra, received $7.3 million in seed and equity funding in 2021. It supports over 5,000 users and expects to quintuple its base over the next year.
Named accounts include Boeing, BASF, Bloomberg BNA, Dell, and NTT Data.
One of the most important SalesTech trends, besides the emergence of ChatGPT, is the rapid incorporation of engagement datasets alongside intent datasets for prioritization and messaging.
A few years ago, we saw the emergence of intent data sets such as first-party web visitor tracking, second-party product review site research, and third-party B2B media research. Initially, this content was integrated into MAPs, ABX platforms, and CDPs, but it was not well integrated into SalesTech. We are now seeing intent data being integrated into SalesTech platforms in a simplified fashion (e.g., High Intent Topics in CRM profiles and Slack alerts) that is digestible for sales reps.
However, intent data only indicates whether a company is in-market, not whether the buying committee is considering your offering or seriously engaged with your sales team. This intelligence comes from a new category of engagement data captured from digital interactions between the revenue team (sales, marketing, and customer success) and the buying committee. Engagement intelligence consists of both traditional digital interactions (e.g., clickthroughs, downloads) and Natural Language Processing (NLP) analytics derived from sales and buying team activities.
NLP helps RevTech platforms determine who is interacting with your firm. It also analyzes buyer sentiment, buyer concerns, deal health, and risk flags. The primary sources of engagement data are emails, recorded phone calls, and recorded meetings. However, any digital interaction between buyers and sellers can be captured such as activity in digital sales rooms, webinar attendance, chat messaging, and scheduled meetings. I anticipate that customer support platforms will also be tapped for engagement data to help gauge churn risk and friction during product trials.
Engagement data indicates whether a deal is on track and what issues could result in lost deals or pushed out pipeline. For example, engagement data assesses whether:
Discussions are single or multi-threaded
Key decisionmakers are involved (e.g., has a security review been performed or has legal been included?)
Competitors have been mentioned
Pricing concerns were raised
Follow on meetings have been scheduled
Meetings had a positive flow or were dominated by the sales rep
In short, engagement data provides sales reps and managers deal health and risk analytics that improve forecasting and ensure that deal risks are quickly mitigated. And as interactions are digital, managers can discuss these issues during one-on-ones or offer quick tips on next steps. They can even review the discussion associated with the risk and identify skills and knowledge gaps for coaching.
The interesting thing about intent and engagement data is they are highly complementary with each other. Operations teams should be looking at integrating intent data alongside engagement data. Intent data is valuable for identifying who and when to reach out to ideal customers. However, once a relationship is established, the focus shifts to engagement data for monitoring deal health. After a deal is signed, both engagement and intent data are in play. Intent data identifies cross-sell opportunities and churn risk through second and third-party intent topic monitoring while Engagement and Product Usage data evaluate adoption rates and potential implementation issues.
TruVoice can also be used for customer experience, competitive analysis, and churn analysis.
Primary Intelligence has collected win/loss intelligence through manual post-mortem deal interviews for twenty years. Automating the process both lowers the cost of intelligence collection and widens the scope of intelligence collected. Survey response rates are between 25% and 35% due to the request coming from the sales rep. Online surveys run ten to fifteen minutes and are dynamically adjusted based on the responses. TruVoice collects both qualitative and quantitative responses.
“We’ve taken the live interview model that we have honed over our entire existence and turned it into an online experience, where we call it an online interview. But it really is something that a respondent can do in ten minutes on a mobile device. There are some quantitative questions for them to record voice responses, which we then transcribe and…publish that data. And then we still do the live interview.”
“The value of win-loss-no decision analysis at scale is that you have continuous, near real-time feedback on a higher percentage of accounts for improved insights and confident strategy adjustments across all of your revenue teams,” said Primary Intelligence CEO Ken Allred. “But the biggest breakthrough is having the ongoing rep-by-rep, deal-by-deal intelligence to drive situational training and enablement. This eliminates the bias of reps providing their own feedback or requiring managers to review hundreds of hours of call recordings.”
Gong and Crayon Partnerships
Primary Intelligence recently partnered with conversational sales platform Gong to integrate in-cycle deal intelligence. Primary Intelligence delivers a daily log of competitive mentions to sales reps, providing them with battlecard links and links to call transcripts that help them write follow-on messaging that parries competitive statements. The Gong integration ensures that conversational intelligence from deals is available alongside post-deal analysis, providing a clearer view of why deals are won or lost, comparative strengths and weaknesses versus competitors, and improved messaging.
“Our approach in the last five years or so has been [asking] ‘How can we take the operational lift and automate as much as possible?” explained Primary Intelligence President Nick Siddoway to GZ Consulting. “Now it’s a process that begins in Salesforce or whatever CRM you’re using.”
Primary Intelligence also recently partnered with Competitive Intelligence Platform Crayon, marrying competitive and win/loss intelligence in a common platform. The joint solution “helps teams better understand their competitors.”
“In today’s competitive climate, competitive intelligence and win-loss analysis are essential for B2B companies looking to increase win rates,” stated the firms. “While win-loss interviews and surveys with buyers are filled with critical competitive insights, getting these insights updated into competitive intelligence deliverables, such as battlecards, has traditionally been a slow, manual process — until now.”
Crayon and Primary Intelligence highlight competitor offerings’ relative strengths and weaknesses, providing improved positioning for sales and marketing teams. A separate pricing module helps debunk sales rep claims that deals are regularly lost on price, providing a more accurate view of deal loss. By helping differentiate offerings and identify why deals are won or lost, vendor offerings become less price sensitive.
Primary Intelligence also provides views at the rep level, providing insights into the strengths and weaknesses of reps and where they would benefit from coaching.
“The future of sales enablement is providing custom, rep-specific coaching in the flow of work. Ideally, those recommendations are based on actual performance feedback from real customers,” said Erik Peterson, Chief Executive Officer of Corporate Visions. “The acquisition of Primary Intelligence will enable us to make invisible problems visible and then provide personalized coaching to individual reps and revenue teams based on how buyers and customers respond.”
“What better evidence that your strategies and spend are actually working as intended than actual customer feedback connected to wins, losses, and no decisions, as well as renewals and expansion cycles?” Peterson added.
The acquisition provides Corporate Visions with 100,000 buying decisions spanning twenty years, which will be incorporated into its B2B DecisionLabsresearch and advisory business. Corporate Visions, which positions itself as a Decision Science company, calls Primary Intelligence its “fourth lab.” B2B DecisionLabs incorporates behavioral research, brain studies, and field trials, alongside customer feedback.
“We will engage our B2B DecisionLabs research director, Dr. Leff Bonney, co-founder of the Florida State University Sales Institute, to effectively leverage the incoming data points into insights using all applicable and appropriate academic research-based approaches, tools, and techniques,” explained Tim Riesterer, Chief Strategy Officer at Corporate Visions and Chief Visionary at B2B DecisionLabs, to GZ Consulting.
“Our expectation is that this steady flow of buyer-driven deal insights will completely distinguish B2B DecisionLabs among other research and advisory firms who rely on their subscriber clients to provide data snapshots and self-reported survey responses to formulate their industry insights,” continued Riesterer. “This will be in addition to our completely unique brain study lab and ongoing field trials with actual clients.”
The Primary Intelligence dataset provides a deep set of historical and cross-industry data that captures deals both in progress and after closing. This research complements its other three research laboratories.
“This will give our advisory clients even more confidence in the B2B DecisionLabs recommendations compared to opinion surveys and moment-in-time snapshots of data,” said Riesterer. “It will also mean we can provide more reliable tools than you otherwise get from peer communities that only curate unexamined personal experiences and unsubstantiated claims of expertise.”
“This ongoing flow of customer-sourced data will also be used to continually expand and enhance our revenue growth services to ensure Corporate Visions’ clients always have access to the industry’s best and most updated intellectual property,” Riesterer added.
Corporate Visions offers science-backed revenue growth services for sales, marketing, and customer success. Along with hosting conferences and training, Corporate Visions helps firms “articulate value and promote growth” in three ways:
Make Value Situational by distinguishing your commercial programs between customer acquisition, retention, and expansion.
Make Value Specific by creating and delivering customer conversations that communicate concrete value, change behavior, and motivate buying decisions.
Make Value Systematic by equipping your commercial engine to deliver consistent and persistent touches across the entire Customer Deciding Journey.
By April, Corporate Visions plans to combine automated win-loss-no decision customer feedback with automated skills coaching and customer messaging content from Corporate Visions. Riesterer intends to launch the “first fully automated, situational enablement solution that identifies rep-by-rep weaknesses based on actual customer feedback, to direct specific, custom coaching videos to help address these challenges – in the rep’s flow of work.”
This vision shifts sales rep training from “just-in-case” event-based generic classroom training to “just-in-time” situational coaching and enablement that is customized to each rep and deal. This training will be “always on, deficit-based situational coaching and enablement” that does not require managers to “listen to a bunch of calls or read a lot of feedback and then formulate a custom coaching plan.”
Corporate Visions has already considered which data can be employed for aggregate analytics. Research protocols are subject to Institutional Review Board (IRB) review and approval. Data will only be available for aggregate analysis with the consent of customers. Unique identifiers are stripped from the data and replaced with arbitrary data identifiers, and no individual customer’s data will be published.
B2B DecisionLabs has “partnered with Florida State University as the primary means of data analysis and have taken the steps as outlined in GDPR protocols regarding ‘Information Processors’ to ensure that data is passed to FSU without any unique respondent identifiers,” explained Bonney. “To decrease any risk of inadvertent identification of a customer in the data, Primary Intelligence will assign the ‘ID number’ to customer data and then pass [it] to the B2B DecisionLabs and FSU research team, who will have no input or insight into how data ID numbers are assigned. Additionally, Primary Intelligence will remove any data fields that may be used to ascertain the identity of any one customer.”
The FSU IRB will review Primary Intelligence’s anonymization protocols.
Managerial deal coaching “just doesn’t happen and won’t happen at scale,” remarked Riesterer. Furthermore, “because the system continues to run and generate customer deal feedback, you will be able to monitor, measure, and modify enablement interventions on the fly to see the impact and make continuous appropriate adjustments.”
Thus, the merged company will combine neural research concerning purchasing behavior and buyer studies, with in-the-moment situational coaching tailored to each rep and deal.
B2B data vendor Clearbit is the latest firm to announce a partnership with G2 to deliver G2’s second-party technology intent data. The G2 feed will be available alongside Clearbit’s firmographics, contacts, and Reveal visitor intelligence.
“For any company that shows up in your defined Audiences, Capture automatically creates new accounts and key contacts (from our database of marketable and verified contacts) directly in Salesforce,” blogged Clearbit CMO Kevin Tate. “This way, your marketing and sales teams can focus on engaging the right people, based on role and title, from the companies you care about.”
“Marketers know that engaging the right companies at the right time is key, but with increased pressure to build high-quality pipeline, it’s never been more critical. With G2 and Clearbit, teams can now leverage the powerful combination of company fit and buyer intent to focus their funnel – and even use Clearbit Capture to discover key buyers and contacts at their best-fit, high-intent prospects.”
Clearbit CTO Harlow Ward
G2 Buyer Intent Signals include
Companies viewing G2 Product Profiles and Sponsored Content
Companies viewing G2 Categories, Comparison Products, and Alternative & Competitor Pages
G2 Buyer Intent Scores for every visiting company
“Buyer intent data is a secret weapon for leading B2B marketers,” said Christine Li, VP of Growth & Enablement at G2. “Clearbit’s integration with G2 helps marketers take that data even further — driving more streamlined actions for sales, intent-based revenue, and realizing the full potential of account-based marketing.”
The combined first and second-party intent datasets help identify the optimal time to reach out to customers and prospects. By integrating intent data with a firm’s ICP, marketing can determine which ideal customers are in-market.
As G2 also identifies accounts that are viewing alternatives or running product comparisons, it assists with identifying competitive threats at current customers. Risk flags allow Account Executives and Customer Success Managers to reach out proactively to wobbly renewals and reduce churn risk.
Clearbit Audience and Capture combine first and second-party intelligence for building and activating campaigns across Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Google. Admins can also set up automated Slack alerts when intent scores are met, helping ensure that sales reps focus on target accounts while they are in-market.
“Our focus is on helping you put our Clearbit + G2 audiences to work across your existing stack and apps (with our flexible integrations & webhooks),” remarked Tate to GZ Consulting. “It’ll be interesting to see how these changes in the economy continue to affect how companies spend on MarTech – but we’re seeing more companies currently looking for flexible solutions to ‘upgrade the stack they already have’ vs. ‘rip-and-replace with a walled-garden suite.’”
Bombora is one of the leading sources of third-party intent data gathered from B2B Media sources, with over 5,000 media websites contributing to its Company Surge intelligence. It has chosen to remain independent and broadly partner with RevTech Companies, including six of the seven vendors that were listed in Gartner’s 2022 Magic Quadrant for ABM Platforms: 6sense, Demandbase, Terminus, Madison Logic, RollWorks, and Triblio (Foundry).
“Gartner weighs Intent data as its single-most critical capability for new account acquisition and a driving force in both customer retention and expansion,” blogged Bombora Senior Product Marketing Manager Ryan Moline. “This full-funnel visibility into what’s important to your prospects and customers empowers your go-to-market teams with the data needed to create hyper-personalized, omnichannel buying experiences that result in more meetings booked, accelerated deal cycles, and opportunities for long-term growth. This is just one reason why many of the companies recognized in this year’s Gartner Magic Quadrant partner with Bombora for their Intent data needs.”
Both ABX platforms and direct customers rely on Bombora to identify in-market demand, allowing them to reach out to accounts in their ICP when they are actively researching solutions. Company Surge data can also be deployed for identifying churn risk accounts and upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
“Bombora’s content consumption model has become the de facto standard in B2B marketing for third-party behavioral data to indicate intent,” stated Forrester.
This month, Bombora announced an integration with HubSpot and an enhanced integration with Salesforce.
“Bombora has prioritized direct integrations and partnerships in order to make it easier for sales and marketing teams to access our insights without changing their workflows,” said Bombora CEO Erik Matlick. “HubSpot is one of the most well-known marketing, sales, and service software companies in the world, and we’re thrilled for our app to be in the spotlight as they look to help B2B brands with their business challenges.”
Technology Intelligence vendor HG Insights acquired fellow data vendor Intricately. The acquisition provides HG Insights with global cloud product adoption, usage, and spend data, “adding to HG’s market-leading optimization of the world’s top technology brands’ Go-To-Market.”
The entire Intricately team has joined HG Insights, including CEO Michael Pollack and CTO Fima Leshinsky. Pollack assumed the role of EVP of Market Innovation, and Leshinsky was named an SVP of Product.
“We started Intricately to provide decision-makers with actionable data and insights they could use to plot a course through the ever-expanding Cloud universe. At the time, we saw a world with individuals relying on gut instincts, teams making ‘best guesses,’ and organizations making big bets on circumspect data. We started this business with the goal of making the unknown known. Our vision was, and has always been, to be the authoritative source of truth for digital product adoption, usage, and spend.”
Intricately Founders Fima Leshinsky and Michael Pollack
Intricately’s proprietary sensor network gathers cloud product adoption, usage, and spend data for seven million global businesses across 21,000 cloud offerings. Data are collected from over 150 global Internet points of presence, helping Intricately map digital infrastructure. Its insights are delivered via an API, integrations, data snapshots, and web applications.
“Intricately provides unique and actionable insights that enable cloud sellers to increase velocity by focusing on the highest potential opportunities,” said Pollack. “As the workforces of global companies become increasingly distributed, cloud spend and product adoption have become key indicators when assessing potential buyers’ likelihood of purchasing and deploying new products. Intricately’s intelligence, now part of HG Insights, is uniquely positioned to lead the market on this trend.”
Intricately’s customers include the top three cloud companies. In addition, the acquisition provides “real-time visibility into a company’s cloud footprint and application tech stack.”
“Now, with the addition of Intricately, we can provide real-time visibility into a company’s cloud footprint and application tech stack to provide richer insights for better decisions and faster results,” said HG Insights CEO Elizabeth Cholawsky. “Our customers have come to rely on HG Insights as an indispensable input into their most strategic decisions such as market sizing, whitespace analysis, and territory planning as well as for fundamental activities including opportunity prioritization and account-based marketing intelligence.”
HG Insights and Intricately offer complementary spend data. HG Insights focuses on projected spend for forecasting and go-to-market planning while Intricately measures actual spend for benchmarking and plan measurement. Combined, the companies offer “unmatched spend insights in the Cloud Market that support the full lifecycle of Plan, Optimize, and Execute to empower sales and marketing organizations.”
HG Insights listed a series of technical benefits:
Richer combined datasets to operationalize the planning, targeting, and messaging to prospects based on technology adoption and usage
Improved precision of workload volumes, estimated spends, and the related technologies running on cloud-based infrastructure
Expansion of insights into customer-built cloud and self-hosted applications
Detailed location insights providing a view into both the location of consumption and/or physical infrastructure to power hyper-focused Go-to-Market strategies
Real-time detection of changes to a company’s cloud application and technology strategy
“With this new intelligence in its offering, HG will provide game-changing insights that transform our customers’ Go-To-Market initiatives and accelerate growth,” HG Insights Product Marketing Director Darcy Moss told GZ Consulting. “Strategy, marketing, sales, and operations teams can leverage this insight to answer critical business decisions with greater confidence.”
“By adding Intricately’s market-leading workload and usage data, we’ll give our customers the most detailed, unique picture available of an account’s technology strategy; not just what they have, but why they have it, how they’re using it, and ultimately, what they’re likely to do next. It’s a competitive advantage unmatched in the market,” stated Moss.
Intricately was founded in 2014 and is based in San Francisco. LinkedIn states that it has 54 employees, having grown its headcount by 35% in the past year and 93% over the past two. However, its employment plateaued last November.
“At this time, we will be business as usual until the transition is completed,” stated Moss. “This includes retaining current office locations.”
HG Insights did not disclose any size or growth details. It also did not disclose the acquisition price. Intricately is HG Insights’ second acquisition. In 2018, the firm acquired Pivotal IQ, a curator of IT contract and spend intelligence.
ZoomInfo announced the immediate availability of its new MarketingOS ABM Platform. The service is part of a broader RevOS offering that supports marketing, sales, operations, and recruitment. MarketingOS consolidates ZoomInfo’s legacy marketing capabilities, bringing together two recent acquisitions, Insent and RingLead, with new programmatic and audience management functionality.
ZoomInfo also refined its positioning statement from Revenue Acceleration to Revenue Operating System. It stated that RevOS is “the World’s only revenue operating system of its kind.”
“Our comprehensive B2B database is the key differentiator that sets MarketingOS apart from other ABM solutions,” said ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck. “ZoomInfo’s unique data science algorithms allow marketers to connect with the right prospects at precisely the right time. No other solution on the market combines the power of data-driven insights and marketing-optimized workflows like ZoomInfo’s MarketingOS.”
“Marketers typically fail because the data in most ABM platforms is both inaccurate and incomplete. Current ABM solutions are designed to leverage companies’ own first-party data, which exists in their customer relationship management or marketing automation systems. Without quality data, marketers pour advertising dollars at the wrong prospects and companies, and, as a result, deliver fruitless leads to sales and waste time and resources. With ZoomInfo’s best-in-class data and intelligence at its foundation, MarketingOS enables marketers to effectively reach target accounts and drive qualified leads for sales.”
New functionality includes social and display advertising, abandoned from tracking, and audience targeting. Marketing can build audiences and track campaigns on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Marketing can also build campaigns and manage them programmatically through Clickagy DSP (ZoomInfo) or TradeDesk.
Marketing OS looks to address the “Funnel Famine” suffered by traditional marketing teams. Several issues cause Funnel Famine: crowded B2B advertising channels, dirty data, leaky black-box marketing campaigns, siloed data, and sales’ longtime distrust of Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs).
“Most marketing programs begin with data, whether it’s for tailoring your communications, whether it’s for sending an email, whether it’s for sending a direct mail. It’s all about those accounts that you’re targeting and the professionals at those accounts,” explained ZoomInfo SVP of Product Strategy and Product Marketing Justin Withers to GZ Consulting. “And the reality is that a lot of data, especially if it’s pulled from the CRM or other systems, is outdated. It’s inaccurate. It’s incomplete, and that can actually pollute or even inhibit the lead flow at the top of the funnel, and [it] ultimately leads to poor conversion. It leads to leaks in the funnel, and all this hard work that marketers put in at every stage of the funnel ultimately spills out before it can even reach sales.”
The reality is that the sales and marketing funnels operate in parallel, not sequentially, as represented in traditional funnel diagrams. MarketingOS lets marketers run account-based programs in parallel with sales running account-based sales programs “so that everyone’s aligned at every step of the funnel.”
Under current processes, sales and marketing operate in parallel to each other with little coordination and a single point of handoff for MQLs, a situation that “really doesn’t set marketing up for success…and it leaves sales in a bind,” continued Withers. Thus, marketing complains that sales teams ignore its leads, and sales reps complain about the quality and quantity of marketing-sourced leads. As a result, there is an “acute misalignment between sales and marketing.”
With MarketingOS, handoffs can occur at different points along the marketing funnel, based on the channel and prospect response.
Sales and Marketing are aligned around a set of target accounts both within and beyond the ICP. Thus, an ICP account with spiking intent will be passed to sales, even if marketing has had limited conversations. Furthermore, the rep will know that multiple individuals from the firm have visited the website or that individuals have clicked through on ads or email campaigns.
Likewise, chatbot conversations with target companies can immediately route a chat to the sales rep or schedule a call.
New functionality for managing abandoned forms can revive a prospect. ZoomInfo claims a 60% increase in lead flow with its abandoned form tracking.
MarketingOS functionality includes
Expanded targeting that leverages the full set of ZoomInfo’s first and third-party intelligence for building and activating audiences. ZoomInfo selects include firmographics, technographics, biographics (e.g., Title, 192 Job Functions, Job Levels), web forms, and uploaded lists (e.g., tradeshow lists). Other selects include business events (e.g., funding data, executive changes, projects) and over 300 company attributes (advanced data-mined firmographics such as fleet size and company benefits). Targeting also ingests account, contact, and lead attributes from Salesforce, HubSpot, and Marketo.
First and third-party intent data time outreach while buyers are in-market, helping to improve marketing and sales efficacy. Marketers can track up to 500 intent topics, with up to 50 available at a time. In addition, chat-based targeting is coming soon.
An “in-market predictive score” that identifies each prospect’s buying stage, “informing how and when marketers should engage with prospects based on their ranking and helping them to prioritize their outbound efforts on prospects who are most likely to convert.”
Campaign Management and Analytics. Marketers upload their creative, build an audience, set the budget, and select their channels.
Webforms, infused with automated enrichment, support shorter forms with reduced abandonment rates
Abandoned form tracking, with Workflows passing the lead to sales or additional nurture steps
ZoomInfo Chat (FKA Insent), a conversational marketing chatbot that leverages ZoomInfo data to score and route leads. Chat immediately passes high-scoring, live leads to sales reps. The chatbot also automates meeting scheduling.
Visitor Intelligence, with pages scored differently (e.g., Product Pages are scored higher than Career or Investor Pages)
Automated workflows triggered by intent, custom intent, WebSights visitor intelligence, Scoops (e.g., business events, projects), Funding, Technologies, and FormComplete. Workflows can also be built to expand reach across the potential buying committee by persona.
RingLead data orchestration to dedupe, cleanse, enrich, and route leads
ZoomInfo Enrich, a set of DaaS enterprise platform integrations for data enrichment and hygiene.
MarketingOS is powered by ZoomInfo’s database spanning 100 million companies, 150 million executives, technographics, intent and engagement data, and event data.
“Marketing and sales funnels work in parallel, so everyone is aligned at every step of the funnel,” explained Justin Withers, SVP of Product Strategy and Product Marketing. With MarketingOS, “sales and marketing are working in lockstep at every stage of the journey.”
Tying together intent and engagement data and processing them through ZoomInfo Workflows is the future of ABM. Intent data is employed at the top of the funnel when buyers are in the initial research phase. Once prospects have begun interacting with a vendor, most buyer behavior research falls under the engagement category (e.g., web forms, email responses, chatbots, conversational intelligence, etc.). Finally, intent data helps identify upsell and cross-sell opportunities at the tail end of the customer lifecycle.
Engagement and intent data are also valuable churn risk indicators, helping customer success and account managers detect potential cancelations or defections well before decisions have been made. In addition, intent data can show a spike in research related to product-associated topics and competitors. Engagement monitoring widens to include customer success interactions, training participation, platform usage, and general account health indicators.
“We can support your new customer acquisition with these signals,” stated Withers. “We can support your opportunity acceleration with these signals. We can also support your renewal, upsell, cross-sell motions based on different types of signals that are happening at those accounts. So, it really is a full customer lifecycle marketing solution.”
MarketingOS will be available as a pair of SKUs:
ABM Elite+: The full ABM Platform package, including RingLead Cleanse, Enrich, and Route
ABM Advanced+: Package includes everything except RingLead
“The purpose behind the two distinct offerings is to simplify our primary offering for those focused on ABM engagement and marketing programs, as opposed to the more operationally focused data orchestration capabilities,” explained ZoomInfo Analyst Relations Director Michael Basilio to GZ Consulting.
MarketingOS includes ten marketing seats and three administrative seats for RingLead routing and ZoomInfo Chat.
The broader RevOS branding consists of MarketingOS, SalesOS, OperationsOS, and RecruitingOS. ZoomInfo calls RevOS the “world’s first integrated go-to-market platform.” All four RevOS services are generally available.
ZoomInfo’s data cloud, orchestration tools (e.g., RingLead, B2B DaaS, Workflows), and engagement tools (advertising, sales engagement, web forms, chat, and conversational intelligence) are at the heart of RevOS.
“There’s nothing more important in business than successfully executing your go-to-market strategy,” states ZoomInfo in its product collateral. “Get it right, and your business flourishes. Get it wrong, and you’re toast. That’s why having one integrated go-to-market platform is so crucial. You can think of it as your revenue operating system.”
SalesOS bundles together a set of new and legacy sales tools:
Chorus, the conversational sales platform the firm acquired in July
Sales and Marketing Alignment has been a stated goal of the two functions for at least a decade, but they have operated with different datasets, metrics, objectives, and platforms. Thus, alignment was more vision than reality. By aligning ABM on a common platform and reference database, alignment is no longer impaired by an organization’s tech stack and data foundation.
“Crucially, MarketingOS lets marketing teams work from a common data foundation. Only 39% of sales and marketing teams share buyer signals, and half say it’s because their sales and marketing systems don’t integrate. The shared data foundation of SalesOS and MarketingOS tightens key handoffs and unlocks true marketing and sales alignment, eliminating conflicting records, wasted effort, and missed opportunities.”
ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck, “Introducing RevOS: The future of modern go-to-market software,” (Feb 8, 2022)
OperationsOS contains RingLead data orchestration (i.e., match, unify, dedupe, normalize, cleanse, enrich, score, and route data) and B2B DaaS services (e.g., APIs, webhooks, cloud data warehouse integrations).
Finally, RecruitingOS contains ZoomInfo Recruit, its recently launched prospecting and engagement service for HR departments and recruiters. RecruitingOS also includes a set of Applicant Tracking Service connectors.
“Recruiters can filter and reach more good-fit candidates, use pipeline management tools to collaborate and organize the hiring process, and automate the candidate outreach process,” explains Zoominfo. “This helps you source and connect with candidates faster, reducing the time to find and hire talent.”
Along with new product positioning, RevOS sports new logos, color palettes, styles, and a “unified in-app experience to create a singular, cohesive go-to-market solution that spans the entire suite of ZoomInfo products.” There are also redesigned data dashboards and reports that “offer a faster, more responsive experience that allows your sales, marketing, and recruitment teams to visually demonstrate ROI and how their work aligns with broader organizational objectives.”
In short, RevOS unifies sales, marketing, revenue operations, and recruitment on the same set of data, providing “the same source of truth” and “one integrated platform for every stage of the marketing and sales funnel.” “If data is the lifeblood of the modern sales organization, then go-to-market teams must have the technology to act upon that data. RevOS’ unified data tech stack gives sales, marketing, operations, and recruiting teams a single source of truth from which to launch their campaigns and go-to-market motions, simplifying internal workflows, reducing costs, and maximizing interoperability between teams,” blogged Schuck. “RevOS is the next chapter in ZoomInfo’s journey as the world’s leading go-to-market platform.”
Technology Market Intelligence vendor HG Insights announced the global availability of Contextual Intent, a “solution designed for companies seeking to leverage the power of customer buying patterns.” Contextual Intent is available through HG Universe data subscriptions and the Snowflake Data Marketplace. It is currently in “late-stage” beta on the HG Insights Platform, with a scheduled December launch.
Contextual Intent combines firmographics, technographics, contract intelligence (via their 2018 Pivotal IQ acquisition), and bidstream data to deliver “buyer intent data, without all the noise.” It employs web users’ behavior and content consumption to determine which firms are researching, evaluating, or buying technology products or services. In addition, Contextual Intent identifies in-market companies for new technology and potential churn candidates, helping prioritize outreach.
HG Insights ingests two billion intent records each week and matches them against 120 million verified technology installations for 14,000 products, solutions, and services. The HG Insights scoring model measures the frequency of defined topics mined from locations, with observed activity tracked for nine million companies.
“Contextual Intent is the first intent solution to contextualize data with a company’s technographic profile. Our proven, data-driven methodologies now include the use of intent data—providing our customers with what they need to accelerate growth and gain a competitive edge through contextualized buying signals. Our new solution is designed specifically for Go-To-Market teams to remove the noise from intent data and make it actionable. Context matters, and we are able to provide insights that support hyper-targeting for growth and competitive advantage.”
HG Insights CTO Rob Fox
HG Insights cited January 2021 research from Ascend2 that asked sales and marketing professionals about intent data obstacles. Half said that data quality was an issue, and 40% stated that it was challenging to make intent data actionable.
Revenue teams can select twenty to over 100 intent topics from HG Insights’ taxonomy which spans over 4,000 technology-based topics.
HG Insights employs a scoring model based on the frequency of defined topics being researched across the web for each company. It factors in the number of locations demonstrating the activity and baselines intent over time to determine the “increases and trajectories” of research.
Like intent models from other vendors, the Intent Score is measured as the deviation from a company’s baseline and normalized from 1-100. It is updated weekly and incorporates past and present activity. However, interpretation of the scores differs between vendors. Concerning HG Insights, the signal strength is deemed high when the topical intent score exceeds 84 and medium when it falls between 60 and 84.
HG Insights provides intent location, a feature that is available from only a few vendors. Knowing the research location helps identify the potential nexus of the demand unit (or at least the individuals performing initial research).
Contextual Intent supports multiple use cases, including whitespace scenarios (researching a new category of technology for the firm), expansion (current customer is researching additional products), displacement (potential customer take away), and churn. Contextual Insights is tagging Whitespace, Expansion, and Displacement scenarios in its data feed, with Vendor Threat, Upgrade, and Migration tags in development.
“We provide insights surrounding the buyer’s journey about when the buyer is more likely to make a purchase decision. We can provide the context of when a customer indicates moving to an evaluating phase, further into a late stage buying cycle. We provide this context as researching or evaluating. We use NLP to determine when enough activity is detected that indicates a potential buying motion, where specific vendors or products are being considered.
Darcy Moss, HG Insights Product Marketing Director
The current offering employs bidstream data, which is potentially problematic as a long-term source of data gathering. Congress has raised questions about the practice and tying online activity to individuals without consent is a violation of GDPR (Contextual Intent is tied to locations and accounts, not individuals).
“We are always evaluating additive intent supply to diversify our signals,” explained HG Insights Product Marketing Director Darcy Moss to GZ Consulting. “We are sourcing from bid-stream as we develop and refine other techniques and methods. Should any regulatory matters influence existing processes for us and the industry overall, we are confident that we will have a compliant and high-quality source and methodology to continue to provide Contextual Intent to our customers.”
For the direct data subscription product, customers have access to all topics regardless of their signal strength score. Pricing for the data subscription is additive for the Contextual Intent offering.
According to LinkedIn, “The Great Reshuffle” has increased turnover amongst buyers and sellers, leading to greater deal risk. Over the past three months, executive departures (Director and above) have increased by 31% globally. Among sales reps, the rate is up 39%. Thus, the likelihood of a deal being delayed due to a key member of the demand unit or sales team leaving has grown sharply.
Before the pandemic, the standard decay rate of contact records was between 25 and 30%. If the rate has jumped by one-third, then the likelihood of a specific member of the buying committee departing over a three-month sales cycle is approaching ten percent. Thus, a demand unit with six members will likely have one departure every three months, increasing the need for executive change alerts, multithreading of deals, and a deeper understanding of the demand unit.
If the deal is more complex, the odds of delays and stalled deals due to executive changes increase rapidly. A six-month deal cycle with a dozen members of the demand unit (financial, technical, and functional decision-makers, purchasers, influencers, lawyers, compliance, etc.) could lose two or three members. And that doesn’t even factor in the risk of churn on the vendor side. What’s worse, single-threaded sales reps have close to a 20% risk that their champion leaves the company or assumes a different role over the deal lifecycle.
The renewal math becomes scary as well. If the customer success team regularly interfaces with four individuals on the customer side, one or two of them may depart over the year, increasing churn risk. Furthermore, a higher churn rate among customers necessitates greater administrative and training tasks.
It shouldn’t be a surprise that 80% of sales reps have had a deal delayed or lost due to departures.
LinkedIn Senior Director of Global Sales James Burnette argued that multithreading is key to managing deal risk. “Multithreading – i.e., forming relationships with multiple people on the buying committee at an account – is always a best practice.” Burnette noted that sellers with at least four connections at an account are “16% more likely to close a deal with that company, compared to sellers who have less than four connections.”
“The most beneficial thing you can do right now is to learn how to master multithreading,” JB Sales Training Director Morgan Ingram said. “Gathering champions, influencers, and talking directly to the decision-makers is the key to success when it comes to closing deals faster in a difficult environment.”
Conversely, departures can foster relationships at new accounts, so knowing that a key demand unit member has departed is important for both risk mitigation at current opportunities and accounts and building relationships at new organizations. LinkedIn can both flag executive departures and maintain an open line of communications with a champion after he or she has settled into a new position.
“Resources are scant with so many people exiting key roles, so there are opportunities where they might not have been opportunities in the past,” Assist You CEO Robert Knop said. “Look through your connections – there are uncovered sales there.”
Lori Wizdo, Principal Analyst at Forrester, predicts that the Great Resignation will also impact marketing teams, with CMOs assembling more virtual teams consisting of freelance talent, fractional executives, and agency partners.
“We’re seeing clients in places like the Midwest having trouble keeping the talent they’ve built because their team members can get 25% more by working remotely for a New York agency. The distance and untethering from our geographies give people a lot more options, and they will minimize their pain and maximize their gain. So, there will be some stress on those internal competencies.”
Job turnover is likely to continue in the near term. The labor market remains out of balance with 100 open jobs for every 75 unemployed professionals, driving the quit rate to 4.4 million in September, a record high.
“You’re essentially seeing demand continuing to increase without an offsetting increase in talent,” Ryan Sutton, a district director at staffing company Robert Half International. “Until some new talent comes in, until we get employees who are on the sidelines back into the market, it’s very likely this is going to continue.”
RBC calculated sales efficiency for 72 public SaaS companies and found the average sales efficiency at .8X, meaning that public SaaS companies returned 80 cents for every dollar spent on sales and marketing in the previous year.
Sales Efficiency is defined as the revenue growth rate over a period divided by sales and marketing expense margin in the previous period:
According to OpenView Partners SaaS benchmarking report, “Sales and marketing spend peaks at 50% of ARR at the expansion stage. Too many companies underinvest in sales productivity, saddling them with huge costs without the ROI…You should be carefully monitoring your sales efficiency and looking for ways to improve or maintain it year-over-year. Look out for the ‘leaky bucket’ problem, where you spend significant sums to acquire new customers, but then they churn shortly thereafter (churn bait).“
As a general rule, firms with a sales efficiency less than 0.5 do not have a “sustainable investable growth model,” wrote startup advisor Anna Talerico in SaaSX. A ratio between 0.5 and 1.0 is “much better;” however, “while this isn’t necessarily capital efficient (which would make it a hard ratio for a bootstrapped company to maintain for any length of time), it does indicate sales & marketing efficiency and many investors view this as acceptable.” Better yet, firms with a ratio above one have a “strong sales efficiency and a capital-efficient growth model.” However, when the ratio is significantly above one, the firm may be underinvesting in sales and marketing and “leaving growth on the table.”