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provider test, the match rate doubled to 98% due to three factors: M/L-powered matching, historical matching against outdated records, and record completeness.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Maintaining a historical file of inactive and out of date records provides significant value when batch processing enterprise records sitting in CRMs and MAPs.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.

D&B Connect Data Management Platform

Dun & Bradstreet launched D&B Connect, a self-service data management platform that “intuitively connects, manages and visualizes critical data across an organization using the Dun & Bradstreet Data Cloud.”  D&B Connect helps users benchmark, access, clean, enrich, and monitor their customer and contact data.

D&B Connect provides an “easy-to-use portal for managing sales and marketing data.”  The service enriches and unifies data for a “complete view of the customer.”  Along with Dun & Bradstreet firmographics, linkages, and contacts, D&B Connect enriches customer files with over 2,500 insights and supports custom data layouts.

D&B Connect builds on Dun & Bradstreet’s data management solutions for sales and marketing platforms and leverages Dun & Bradstreet’s global WorldBase file, D-U-N-S Numbers, and DUNSMatch capabilities.  These assets support identity resolution, including corporate linkages, to tie together account hierarchies, providing a unified customer view that spans regions, product lines, multiple company names, and enterprise software platforms.

D&B Connect acts as a centralized hub to manage and report on data quality in enterprise platforms, including CRMs, MAPs, ERPs, data lakes, and CDPs.  A machine learning engine normalizes input records, removing manual file preparation steps.

Users can set match quality rules and thresholds based on D&B Confidence Code, Match Grade String, and the number of match candidates to be returned.

Other features include embedded intelligence, “simplified workflows,” and “team-based controls and dashboards to improve collaboration across departments.”

D&B Connect can process millions of records “in a SOC 2 certified, CCPA, and GDPR-ready environment.”

“With D&B Connect, we put the power to manage data quality in the user’s hands, enabling our clients to reduce time spent on data management from weeks to hours,” said Michael Bird, President of Sales and Marketing Solutions at Dun & Bradstreet.  “We will continue to innovate across our sales and marketing portfolio to reduce MarTech complexity by integrating directly into the workflows of our clients so they can focus on growing their businesses.”

D&B Connect is supported by a team of 28 data advisors, each with at least ten years of experience.

In 2021, D&B Connect will be extended into finance and risk use cases.

Dun & Bradstreet has had a strong 2020 that included an IPO, the acquisitions of European partner Bisnode and firmographics vendor Orb Intelligence, and the launch of several products and services (COVID-19 Risk Data, Pipeline Risk Analysis, D&B ABM Platform, and D&B Analytics Studio).

Validity Launches Everest Email Deliverability Platform

Email deliverability vendor Validity announced the global availability of Everest, a new platform for email optimization, analytics, and delivery.  The platform combines the capabilities of 250ok, Return Path, and BriteVerify, businesses that they acquired over the past two years.

“Validity built Everest to give marketers everything they need to ensure email success,” promised the firm.  “Everest is a complete email analytics platform powered by Validity’s exclusive data feeds, the largest data network in the industry, and widespread integration and support within the email ecosystem.  It offers marketers a complete set of tools to prepare, test, optimize, and measure their email campaigns.  With fully configurable dashboards, a highly intuitive user interface, and seamless integration with many of the leading email service providers, Everest makes it fast and easy to optimize campaigns.

Other features include performance tracking reports, customizable alerts, list hygiene, and campaign benchmarking versus competitors and global senders.  Unique features include email certification for avoiding spam filters, View Time Optimization (VTO) for Verizon Media mailboxes, and enterprise-grade managed services.

Everest pre-send optimization features include form validation, bulk upload verification, and design and content tools.  Emails are checked against over seventy device-mail clients.  Email links and images are tested, and A/B testing is supported.

Competitive intelligence features include message samples, subject lines, sending volume, message patterns, and performance metrics.  Everest also flags competitor list hygiene issues, authentication gaps, and blocklist history.  “Beyond that, you’ll be able to compare brands side-by-side to identify low-hanging fruit and quick wins around sending volumes, accessibility, mobile compatibility, image animation, localization, and sending best practices.”

Verizon VTO delivers emails at the top of the inbox when the addressee is in her email client, quadrupling open rates and doubling click through rates for Yahoo, AOL, Verizon.net, and ATT.net mailboxes.

Everest “is, by a wide margin, the most comprehensive, insightful, value-add email platform ever offered in our industry,” said Validity CEO Mark Briggs.  “Any business that relies on digital marketing should consider Everest as the key to delivering email success.”

ClickDimensions Partners with InsideView

Sales and marketing intelligence vendor InsideView partnered with ClickDimensions to improve customer pipelines and content delivery within Microsoft Dynamics.  The partnership will support enhanced Dynamics data cleansing and enrichment tools for Account, Contact, and Lead records.

ClickDimensions is creating a Data Management services offering and will resell InsideView products and DaaS solutions for Dynamics.  ClickDimensions plans to exclusively sell these services as an add-on to their current product line and as part of a premium offering.  ClickDimensions will also provide data advisory services.

ClickDimensions will be rolling out a product suite of native MS Dynamics hygiene and prospecting tools in the coming months.  The new suite will be built upon InsideView data management capabilities, including lead enrichment, data cleansing, email validation, lead-to-account mapping, family tree, and account assignment.  The suite will also support analytics and visualization tools for monitoring data health.

Admins can set the timing, frequency, and scope (i.e. fields and records) of updates.  Both batch and real-time hygiene will be supported.  There will also be a one-time enrichment as part of the ClickDimensions offering. 

The new service will deliver “the insights they need to find and engage prospects more effectively, the tools they need for targeting intelligently, and the ability to automatically clean, enrich, and manage Microsoft Dynamics 365 company and contact data.”

ClickDimensions will be deploying a private preview in August for the InsideView’s Diagnose, Data Integrity, and Target offerings.  A September GA is scheduled for these services.

“Given the state of the world today, finding new customers is now more than just a growth driver, it is a matter of survival as businesses seek to replace revenue from customers that have pulled back or gone out of business,” explained ClickDimensions CEO Mike Dickerson.  “In addition to finding new prospects, businesses need to be even more relevant.  Buyers expect the same level of personalization and relevance from B2B interactions as B2C, and that requires complete and accurate data.  Our partnership with InsideView will enable our customers to ensure their data is always fresh and always current.”

“The velocity of change in customer data is unprecedented in today’s business environment, and many companies can’t keep up.  InsideView helps companies keep data accurate, refreshed, and actionable so they can focus on customers and revenue.  Combined with their marketing automation solutions, ClickDimensions customers will have the tools and intelligence they need to manage their customer data and target and engage the right buyers.  The partnership is a great match for B2B companies using Microsoft Dynamics.”

InsideView CEO Umberto Milletti

ClickDimensions describes itself as “The Marketing Cloud for Microsoft Dynamics.”  ClickDimensions embeds multi-channel marketing automation and analytics natively within MS Dynamics, supporting full customer journey engagement.  Marketing automation services include web forms, landing pages, visitor intelligence, lead scoring, social marketing, event management, surveys, SMS messaging, email marketing, and campaign automation.  The firm also provides marketing consulting services, including campaign execution, marketing advisory, and user training.  

Because ClickDimensions is native to Dynamics, there are no integration costs or data synchronization issues.  

ClickDimensions is based in Atlanta and has 3,700 customers.  Regional offices are located in the Netherlands, Ireland, Israel, and Australia.

InsideView: Enhanced Corporate Family Tree Display

InsideView enhanced its corporate family tree UX.  Along with an improved display, users may search and filter the tree, allowing them to home in on key subsidiaries for sales targeting.  

Search and filtering help reps identify best prospect locations for establishing a beachhead, expand to similar locations, extend into new markets, or leverage an MSA to identify locations within a sales territory.

The tree is now keyword searchable and filterable by location, size (both employees and revenue), industry, site status (e.g. operating, inactive/closed), and site type (e.g. Retail, Manufacturing, Distribution Center, etc.).  Filtering allows reps to focus on locations in their territory or locations in targeted verticals.  If a parent node is de-selected by a filter, but a subsidiary is selected, the parent location is grayed out but still displayed, providing operational context to the sales rep.

Users may also expand or collapse tree nodes and individually select locations of interest.  Branch locations may be added to the tree via a “site locations data available” slider.

The number of locations is displayed in the company overview.

Sales and marketing professionals can also download the tree for campaigns and analysis.  Filtered trees may be downloaded in Excel or CSV formats.  A map feature displays location density for the United States by state, for Canada by province, or globally by country.

The new family tree view is available in both the CRM and web views.  1.2 million locations are flagged as subsidiaries or acquired firms.

InsideView also recently released a set of small enhancements to InsideView Sales.  Admins can now sync a broader set of Account, Contact, and Lead fields with Salesforce.  New Account fields include Twitter handle, Facebook page, and blog page.  New Contact and Lead fields include city, state, country, job level, and job function.

Other Upgrades

InsideView released a number of additional enhancements to its product lines.  

InsideView for Sales users can unlink and rematch improperly linked Account and Contact records.

InsideView Refresh for Salesforce now offers real-time email verification for unmatched records.  Admins can also manage Salesforce contacts, enrich fields, and flag duplicates.

New InsideView Data Integrity dashboards display how many Account, Contact, or Lead records are updated over time.  The dashboards indicate the number of records processed, new records processed, duplicate records, match data, field fill rates, and segments.

InsideView Target added a filter for contacts with direct dial phones.

InsideView also added cross-product navigation.

The InsideView universe has grown to 15 million companies and 44 million contacts.

Sales Navigator Q1 Release: Contact Creation

LinkedIn rolled out its Q1 2020 Sales Navigator release, the first quarterly release under their new product chief Lyndsey Edwards.  Expanded features include contact creation, a redesigned PointDrive service (now called Smart Links), search enhancements, job posting growth alerts, and enhancements to the home page and mobile app.

Contact Creation is the biggest enhancement in the release.  Like the Data Validation flag last quarter, Contact Creation is a limited data sync solution that is bounded by their member data privacy agreements.  Contact Creation allows reps to create CRM contact records from within Sales Navigator.  While other Sales Intelligence vendors provide full contact records including email, direct dial, job function, job level, and social links, Sales Navigator only supports the following fields (of which only four are pre-populated):

  • Account
  • Opportunity
  • Opportunity Role
  • First Name (Pre-populated from Sales Navigator)
  • Last Name (Pre-populated from Sales Navigator)
  • Job Title (Pre-populated from Sales Navigator)
  • Country (Pre-populated from Sales Navigator)
  • Email
  • Phone Number
  • Lead Source

Edwards noted that the average CRM instance has roughly half of its records out of date.  Reducing record creation and update workflows help address this problem.  LinkedIn can be particularly helpful in identifying executive departures and title changes, hence last quarter’s data validation flag.  However, Contact Creation only pre-populates four fields.  Thus, sales reps either need to have the other details available when creating the contact record or upload a stump record, which is later populated by a different vendor (e.g. Lightning Data partners on the AppExchange).  While other vendors allows lists of Account, Contact, or Lead records to be uploaded, only a single contact record may be created at a time from Sales Navigator.

“We’re really leaning into our relationships with CRM vendors over the past couple of quarters,” said Edwards.  “It’s an age-old problem that isn’t getting better.  We think we can help in a pretty meaningful way.  When people change jobs, they update their LinkedIn profiles first.”

Record matching and duplicate checking are performed.

Contact Creation is available for Enterprise clients only.  Admins must turn on CRM Sync for Salesforce.  Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales contact creation is in beta.


Part II of my release coverage discusses Smart Links, their next-generation PointDrive service.

Zoominfo Data Quality

When Zoominfo launched its new platform in September, they focused on functionality, packaging, and new capabilities, but did not discuss how their databases were combined.  As the data collection methodologies of the two firms differed significantly, it was unclear how they unified the datasets.  Prior to the acquisition, DiscoverOrg created a second tranche of company and contact data that was labeled “technology-generated”  This data was not subject to their traditional human-verification methods and was segregated from human-verified data during prospecting under a secondary results tab.

When the databases were combined for the new platform, Zoominfo added data quality scores for each contact record.  Contacts are scored based on their predicted accuracy.  Thus, a contact record with a score of 95 has a 95% likelihood that the contact was at the company, and the email was valid.  Records were also assigned an alphabetical score: A+ records have a score of 95 or above, A records have scores between 85 and 94, and B records are scored between 75 and 84.  Contact records now display the numeric and alphabetical scores.  Quality scores are also included in file downloads and synced with enterprise software applications.

While the scores do not factor in direct dial accuracy, Derek Smith, SVP of Data and Research, indicated that direct dial accuracy generally lags the contact quality score by five points.

Data quality score thresholds can be adjusted based upon the user’s objectives.  When pulling contacts for an email campaign or starting a cadence through a sales engagement partner (Outreach or SalesLoft), setting a high-quality score ensures that the bounce rates are low.  This helps protect the firm’s sender score and prevents emails from being delayed or caught in a SPAM filter.  When setting up a dialing campaign, the quality score can be lower as there are fewer risks associated with bad phone calls (you might even get the contact’s replacement).  One can also selectively upload lower-quality contacts when there are only lower quality contacts that match a target persona at an ABM account.

Zoominfo data spans 100 million active global contacts across 20 million companies.  Of these, 73 million have emails, and 43 million have direct dials.  Zoominfo offers over a million contacts for seven countries:

  • The United States (64M)
  • Canada (6.1M)
  • Australia (4.2M)
  • India (3.7M)
  • The United Kingdom (2.0M)
  • South Africa (1.3M)
  • Brazil (1.1M)

Zoominfo employs several methods for contact verification.  NeverBounce, which they acquired last March, performs regular email verification tests.  They also send a set of email campaign tests to partners for monthly third-party testing.  Likewise, they send a test phone file to the Philippines for middle of the night phone testing.  These tests, along with regular data verification conducted by their human editors, help refine their data quality scoring model.

Data updates are driven by client feedback, editorial research, natural language processing of the open web, NeverBounce testing, and signature block analysis of emails from community members.

Zoominfo now provides mobile numbers alongside company and direct-dial phones.  Mobile numbers have been available from DiscoverOrg for several years, but Zoominfo did not collect them.  Zoominfo is now collecting them for all contacts.  Mobile numbers are not downloadable for most clients, but exceptions are made if there is a valid use case for mobile dialing.  For example, recruiters prefer to call mobile numbers versus direct dials, as mobile calling helps protect the privacy of the individuals being contacted.

Vainu for CRM

Finnish sales intelligence vendor Vainu announced the immediate availability of their new Vainu for CRM connectors.  The new service supports data viewing, synchronization, prospecting, and triggered alerting in Salesforce, MS Dynamics 365, HubSpot, and Pipedrive.  Additional CRM integrations are planned.

Vainu launched its original prospecting service in 2014 but is looking to make its data more consumable by embedding it into user workflows. According to Vainu Head of Marketing Mikko Luhtava, Vainu’s retention rate is much higher when there is a clear user workflow.  Thus, the goal was to make the sales rep’s experience as “frictionless as possible.”

“Since we founded Vainu, we’ve known that in addition to the who, when, what, and why of sales, the other challenge is to get people to actually use that information.  We realized that the key to success there is removing friction; making data as easy as possible to consume.  With Vainu for CRM, we’ve done exactly that—embedded into everything you do in the CRM, real-time company data will be hard to avoid.”

CEO Mikko Honkanen

The sync initially updates account and opportunity records, but additional record types will be supported in the future.  Custom field mapping and update / overlay rules are also planned.

Data syncing is asynchronous and bi-directional.  “Any time you add a record to the CRM, it will search Vainu to fill in data, and any time Vainu receives an update on a company, it will push the update to CRMs with that entity in the database in a matter of minutes,” said Luhtava.

Multi-variable fuzzy matching logic is employed with match confidence scores.  Vainu also supports auto-match functionality for new records and Send to CRM from the Vainu browser service.  Additional features include duplicate record checking and “stare and compare” updates by sales reps.

“Syncing up with a CRM requires an excellent matching tool, and ours is world-class,” said CTO Tuomas Rasila.  “Instead of merely matching based on global unique identifiers, it compares the full extent of a company record to our database to increase our confidence rating in the match.  Once connected, our platform learns from everything salespeople are doing in the CRM to deliver information that’s as relevant as possible.  And since everything is automated, the data-driven experience won’t require endless effort on our customers’ end.”

Vainu for CRM includes two advanced features: CRM-Vainu joint-variable prospecting and triggered workflows.  Joint-variable prospecting allows sales or marketing to build lists using both CRM and Vainu variables.  For example, a targeted prospecting list can be built for a territory which excludes current accounts or for which there was no recent activity. Over 100 joint selects are available. The only other vendor that provides such a feature is D&B Hoovers.

Workflows can be triggered by any of Vainu’s event triggers, which are derived from news, filings, and data changes.  Vainu supports 55 triggers which can be combined with keywords.  Both general company-level events (e.g. mergers, acquisitions, expansions, funding) and “very detailed, database-specific” triggers such as new vehicles, new website registrations, and new technology deployments are available.

“With the trigger-based approach, the likelihood of bringing in a new customer is more than two-times higher if there is an event within a prospect that triggers you to reach out to them.”

Vainu

Triggered events are displayed within the CRM and Slack.  They can also be sent as email alerts and through Zapier connectors.  Workflows are currently available for Nordic companies and the Netherlands.

Vainu includes connectors as part of their standard subscription.  Pricing begins at €6,600 per year for one country and five seats.

Helsinki-based Vainu has grown revenue to €15 million in five years.  The firm supports over 2,000 customers, including EY, Santander, Bridgestone, SAP, and Telia.  

The Vainu database covers Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, and the Netherlands with registry data matched against web mined intelligence and 55 business signals.  France, Britain, and the United States are currently in beta.

US data is gathered from state Attorneys General filings supplemented with crawled intelligence.  At the moment, the US database is mostly being sold for data projects.

Vainu sells databases by country with both local language and English user interfaces.


See Previous Post: Vainu Rebrands (24-09-2019)

Vainu Control analyzes the “revenue impact of your data usage.”

Quora: How Accurate are Zoominfo Direct Dials?

My answer to the question: How Accurate are Zoominfo Direct Dials?

This post has been updated and can be found here. I removed the outdated content from this post.

Zoominfo provides a deep set of sales and marketing tools including ICP/TAM, visitor intelligence, intent-based alerts, enterprise software connectors, and trigger-based workflows.

I have not conducted a recent study of Tier 2 data vs. other contact data sources, so cannot speak to its quality.

Two other vendors directly collect and verify contact direct phones and emails. If direct-dial accuracy is a key concern, also evaluate DealSignal and SalesIntel.io. DealSignal performs overnight reverification so is better for marketing than sales. SalesIntel performs 90-day reverification cycles and claims to be significantly less expensive than Zoominfo. Both companies offer contact enrichment, contact prospecting, and enterprise software connectors (CRM, MAP, Sales Engagement, Chrome).


Continue to updated post.

ReachOut 2.0 identifies LinkedIn pages and URLs and maps them to ZoomInfo Intelligence. Profiles, which include firmographics, emails, and direct dials, may then be quickly uploaded to CRMs or sales engagement platforms..
ReachOut 2.0 identifies LinkedIn pages and URLs and maps them to ZoomInfo Intelligence. Profiles, which include firmographics, emails, and direct dials, may then be quickly uploaded to CRMs or sales engagement platforms.

SalesIntel at 18 Months

Sales Intelligence vendor SalesIntel closed out a successful second year on the market with growth in content, staff, and functionality.  In Q1, SalesIntel will be formally rolling out a new data enrichment service along with Salesforce and Marketo connectors. The firm added over 150 new clients in 2019.

In 2019, SalesIntel increased its verified contact data by 80% to 4.5 million contacts.  Data is hand-verified by a team of over 200 full-time and 1,200 on-demand SalesIntel-trained researchers.  Due to human verification, the company claims a 95% accuracy level for its contacts and is now able to identify the exact locations of executives.

“For a company just 18 months old, 2019 was in many ways, a test of our grit, competence, and above all, the value we create for our clients. I can say with 100% confidence that we have passed with flying colors.  We plan to continue making significant investments across the board, the fruition of which you’ll see in the next year.”

SalesIntel CEO Manoj Ramnani

In 2020, SalesIntel intends to grow its coverage by millions of contacts and expand coverage internationally.  The firm also plans to extend its technographic coverage by “tens of millions” of values.  The roadmap includes integrations with Marketo and Bullhorn.

“As we continue to expand our data coverage, strengthen our platform and sign more clients, we’ll also continue to scale our team with more client success, data engineers, and researchers to maintain the highest standard of concierge data services that our clients appreciate and love,” said CEO Manoj Ramnani.

SalesIntel also began offering Account, Contact, and Lead record enrichment.  Technographic data, which is available in the prospecting service from HG Insights, is not included in the match and append service; however, SalesIntel noted that joint clients can obtain technographic data enrichment directly from HG Insights.  

The enrichment report details match rates, updated and enriched record counts, and the number of records that were appended (see Figure 1).

SalesIntel is selling enrichment processing as an add-on to the existing prospecting service.  Pricing starts at $5,000 per annum and is volume-based.

Enrichment is currently available via the SalesIntel portal and will be available as a Salesforce integration later this month.  A Marketo integration is scheduled for later in the quarter.

SalesIntel recently rebranded its Chrome plug-in as RevDriver.  Subscribers can export to CRM, MAP, SalesLoft, or Outreach.  A RevDriver Marketo connector will be available later this month.

SalesIntel’s New Data Enrichment Report