SalesLoft is quite pleased with its previously announced LinkedIn Sales Navigator partnership. SalesLoft VP of Product Strategy Sean Kester noted that SalesLoft “worked extremely closely with their team” and that SalesLoft has the highest widget use amongst all of LinkedIn’s SNAP partners. The Sales Navigator app supports real-time news, account information, introductions, ice breakers, connections, and recommended leads. LinkedIn intelligence is delivered within SalesLoft’s Persona and Company Smart Panels.
“Our organization and thousands of others like us depend on LinkedIn daily for prospecting, insights, social selling, and the tools to build real, authentic relationships with your prospects and customers,” said SalesLoft CEO Kyle Porter. “In many ways, SalesLoft’s technology has been built to be extremely complementary with that of LinkedIn.”
SalesLoft recently launched a meeting tool which integrates with Outlook and Gmail. The new service provides calendar links to customers and prospects so they can quickly book time on the rep’s calendar. Booked meetings are visible within both SalesLoft and Salesforce. A booked meeting can trigger automation rules such as changing a cadence stage, marking as success, or moving to a cadence such as setting follow up meetings or kicking off a meeting prep cadence.
Calendar settings include default meeting length, daily meeting windows, time zone, and standard message. Users may continue to use Calendly and Chili Piper for setting meetings.
Another new feature is live website tracking which captures who visited a corporate website and which pages were visited. Initially, the functionality is cookie based, but SalesLoft will support IP tracking in the future. Sales reps can use the tracking to leverage past activity (e.g. suggesting additional resources related to past research history) or calling prospects while they are live on a corporate site.
“Live Website Tracking brings a brand new prospect readiness cue to the surface by exposing live and historical website activity to SalesLoft. When you combine the unspoken signal of website activity with the more explicit signal of email interaction and direct response, you move closer than ever to understanding what the prospect needs and where they are in their buying journey.”
Sales enablement service Outreach now offers a meeting scheduler for Outlook and Exchange. The service, currently in beta, is scheduled for general availability in early April. Features include integrated calendaring, reusable meeting templates, Salesforce synchronization, and available meeting insertion into emails. A Google scheduler was previously launched.
Templates provide sales reps with reusable meeting setups and confirmations. Thus, information such as conference call details can be automatically included in confirmation messages.
By including public calendar links in emails, “prospects can easily find a time that works for them or reschedule meetings without additional back and forth,” blogged Chelsey Feldman, Outreach Product Storyteller. “You can even manage multiple schedules with the ability to book meetings on behalf of someone else, and reassign meeting owners without creating a new invitation.”
Calendaring can be a huge waste of time for sales reps. By integrating calendar functionality into Outreach and Google, sales reps have time freed up for more valuable account planning and sales activities. “Outreach Meetings enables salespeople to focus on closing deals rather than wasting valuable time managing the logistics of scheduling – and rescheduling – countless calls and meetings,” said Outreach CEO Manny Medina. “Now that Outreach Meetings is integrated with both Google and Microsoft platforms, salespeople can instantly schedule appointments – and get back to the business of selling.”
Outreach claims that the Customer Success Team at Jitterbit, where reps schedule around 45 meetings per quarter, saves an hour or more per user each week due to the scheduling functionality.
Additional time savings will be achieved as Outreach builds follow-on capabilities into their meeting scheduler. Feldman listed the following roadmap features:
Intelligent automation for perfectly-timed reminders and no-show follow up
Features enabling you to follow up on meetings in a timely and actionable way
An integrated note taking solution so you can run your meeting with fewer extra tools
Analytics and insights on: the meetings you’re booking, holding, and rescheduling; upcoming meetings; and which emails are most successful at helping you book meetings
One feature, not mentioned, is round-robin scheduling.
Outreach noted that 20% of meetings fail because the prospect cancels or does not show up. Thus, managing this scenario in a future release will improve sales rep efficiency and reduce the number of lost or delayed opportunities.
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.
Continuing on my discussion of Sales Intelligence enhancements in 2016, my next area of coverage is connectors which extend functionality into CRMs, MAPs, Google Chrome, etc.
Almost all Sales Intelligence vendors offer Salesforce.com connectivity as a baseline offering. Some have limited functionality while others provide a fully integrated offering encompassing virtually all of their website features along with update features (e.g. Batch, continuous, “stare and compare”).
The following vendors launched or enhanced their CRM connectors:
Zoominfo released a new version of Zoominfo for Salesforce in February 2016. Features include on-demand updating, new contact matching, segmentation analysis, and new targeted contacts. Zoominfo stresses that all enrichment, analysis, and targeting are done via “one easy-to-use interface” without the need to export files to Excel. Zoominfo for Salesforce also added integrated prospecting. Data may be shared bi-directionally between the services so users can check for duplicates before uploading prospects to SFDC. Zoominfo also added custom mappings for all fields into its Salesforce connector and improved the company and contact lookup workflows.
Avention released OneSource for MS Dynamics and OneSource for Oracle Sales Cloud connectors which integrate Avention functionality into the Microsoft and Oracle CRMs. Features include I-frame display, “stare and compare” updates, custom variables, prospecting, and the Avention Journal. Avention also rolled a series of enhancements into its CRM connectors. These include:
The automatic population of matched records, bypassing the “stare and compare” step for new accounts
Avention Journal filtering
Avention Journal list views (the default view is calendared)
Modify the Avention Journal viewing period
Contact filtering by job function, level, title, keyword, etc.
DataVision tab (if licensed)
Salesforce Lightning support providing improved tablet usability and dynamic resizing.
Batch duplicate management on bulk uploads (ignore, create, update)
Data.com added a Prospect Insights view which can be accessed from Opportunity and Account Detail pages. A “See More Insights” button takes the user to additional business and financial details from Dun & Bradstreet. Company intelligence includes D&B WorldBase firmographics and linkage, Hoover’s top company descriptions and competitors, and First Research industry overviews including call prep questions and industry summaries. Data.com also upgraded the Dun & Bradstreet company family view to the Lightning platform.
DiscoverOrg released CRM connectors for Talent Rover, Zoho, and Bullhorn. They also enhanced their Salesforce connector.
To improve the Salesforce experience, LinkedIn Sales Navigator is no longer requiring sales reps to manually identify which contacts should be downloaded from SFDC to Sales Navigator. Synchronization can be managed at the administrator level. While SFDC describes this as improved synchronization, it basically downloads leads and accounts to Sales Navigator. No LinkedIn member account or lead intelligence is uploaded or available for updating SFDC records. However, the system does flag which records are in SFDC so that reps can manually key information from LinkedIn to SFDC. For example, sales reps may add tags (e.g. Qualified) and notes to leads and accounts with this information then synched with Salesforce.
One of the major trends in 2016 was the continued expansion of sales intelligence vendors into the marketing department. Most commonly, this involved Marketing Automation Platform (MAP) connectors with Marketo and Eloqua (Oracle Marketing Cloud), though some vendors support other MAPs as well.
InsideView released an ABM solution in partnership with Marketo. The ABM solution is a bundle that includes products and data services to enable targeted account and contact selection, campaign execution, and measurement.
RainKing released connectors for Pardot and NetSuite
Avention released connectors for Oracle Marketing (Eloqua) and Marketo which support data enrichment, account insights, and predictive analytics. The new MAP connectors support three marketing use cases: web form enrichment, uploaded list matching via the OneSource platform, and prospect list building within OneSource. Lists built and enriched within OneSource are then fed to Eloqua or Marketo.
Several vendors built Chrome connectors in late 2015 or early 2016. Chrome connectors build additional feature functionality into the Chrome browser, usually centering around the contextual display of company and contact information related to corporate websites and LinkedIn profiles. Firms with Chrome Connectors include DataFox, Mattermark, Zoominfo, DiscoverOrg, and HG Data.
To assist with messaging, LinkedIn now offers a Chrome extension for Gmail. The extension provides integrated access to public LinkedIn profiles and social contact information as a right-handed information bar. If a contact is not in Sales Navigator, users can quickly add him or her as a lead without exiting the Inbox. Icebreakers such as shared connections, experiences, and interests help shape account or prospect messaging. TeamLink colleague connections are also displayed.
Finally, several Sales Intelligence vendors began supporting Account Based Sales Development (ABSD) vendors (there are also non-SI vendors participating in ABSD ecosystems providing coaching, transcription, analytics, and other services):
LinkedIn rolled out a trio of enhancements to its Sales Navigator offering to assist with Salesforce synchronization, Gmail integration, and mobile app discovery.
To improve the Salesforce experience, Navigator is no longer requiring sales reps to manually identify which contacts should be downloaded from SFDC to Sales Navigator. While SFDC describes this as improved synchronization, it basically downloads leads and accounts to Sales Navigator. Unlike sales intelligence services which support bisynchronous data sharing, no LinkedIn account or lead intelligence is uploaded or available for updating SFDC records. The system does flag which records are in SFDC so that reps can manually key information from LinkedIn to SFDC.
To assist with messaging, LinkedIn now offers a Chrome extension for Gmail. The extension provides integrated access to public LinkedIn profiles and social contact information as a right-handed information bar. If a contact is not in Navigator, users can quickly add him or her as a lead without exiting the Inbox. Icebreakers such as shared connections, experiences, and interests help shape account or prospect messaging. TeamLink information is also displayed.
The final enhancement is to the Sales Navigator Android and iOS apps which will now display up to ten daily account or lead recommendations based upon user preferences. Recommendations will expire after 24 hours and be replaced with fresh recommendations.
LinkedIn noted that over 25% of Sales Navigator users “solely” use the Navigator app for account intelligence.
“Our goal for Sales Navigator is to be an important part of the daily lives of sales professionals, and we believe these enhancements will get us that much closer,” said Senior Product Manager Tom Lee. “Ultimately, we want to help sales professionals build deeper relationships by working smarter, not harder, and this reinforces our commitment to make them more efficient and effective every day.