The name of the game in Revenue Acceleration is Digital Engagement. There are many forms of engagement that are now being captured (emails, chat, meetings, webinars, etc.), but offline events seemed to be beyond the scope of capture; however, Chili Piper, the calendaring company, has designed tools for scheduling meetings at trade shows and from trade show floors.
The new Chili Events service offers an “all-in-one Event Meetings Management solution for generating more meetings and maximizing ROI from in-person conferences and trade shows.” In short, Chili is looking to facilitate meetings and gather engagement data from in-person events.
As in-person events return, it is vital to gather registration data as event attendees are likely to be part of the demand unit. According to Chili Piper, “81% of conference and trade show attendees have buying authority.”
“In-person events are hugely important for B2B revenue teams,” said Chili Piper CEO Nicolas Vandenberghe. “With Chili Events, we’re making it possible for marketing and sales to not just automate booking conference and trade show meetings with key prospects and customers, but to treat those meetings like any other digital touchpoint in the customer journey, with quantifiable results and data.”
Chili Events features include URLs to pre-book meetings, meeting space availability, unified meeting calendars, automated reminders and rescheduling via email and SMS, and an event management dashboard. Chili Events are integrated with GSuite and Outlook365. Additionally, check-ins and no-shows are synced to Salesforce Campaigns.
Chili Events also supports meeting scheduling from trade booth floors via QR codes for mobile phones, computers at the booth, or register on the prospect’s behalf via Chili’s Instant Booker Scheduler.
Engagement intelligence supports multiple revenue acceleration features including engagement scoring, deal health signals, and deal risk alerts. It can also be used to identify and upload missing contacts in the CRM and build out the buying committee.
Revenue Acceleration vendor Drift rolled out a pair of sales enablement tools to facilitate rapid qualification and lead routing: Fastlane lead forms and Sales Seat intent and engagement alerts.
Fastlane combines traditional lead forms with chatbots to create “conversational forms.” Prospects fill out a lead form with contact information enriched, scored, and routed to the Drift chatbot for high-scoring leads. Thus, high-scoring prospects immediately move to sales rep conversations from the website.
Low scoring leads are passed to nurture or “other automated activations.”
“As a result, sellers can focus on high-converting buyers while routing lower-priority leads to nurture campaigns or other automated activations,” wrote Drift. “The net outcome results in more qualified sales pipeline, an efficient workflow for sales reps, and overall revenue acceleration for the organization.”
If the buyers are too busy to speak immediately, they can schedule a meeting through the chatbot. Likewise, if the rep isn’t available for chat, the bot can schedule a meeting after collecting additional prospect intelligence.
It may seem odd that a firm that is a #noforms proponent would choose to begin offering forms, but not all marketers are ready to eliminate forms.
“For most marketers, it’s the number one source of leads that they drive for their sales team. And if they didn’t have that, sales teams would be on the hook to create nearly all of their own pipeline – which is very inefficient. So we realized we had to do more. We have to support our customers in every way that they work. From the inbound motion that relies on forms to the outbound motion for customers who can’t rely on marketing alone to hit their numbers.”
CEO David Cancel
There are also scenarios where a form makes more sense than a bot. Registering for a webinar works better as a form than a bot as it is transparent about the requisite data entry. Likewise, enabling forms with optional bots increases their flexibility and value.
Continue to Part II which discusses Sales Seat and the importance of rapid sales responses for inbound leads.
For over a decade, Sales Intelligence vendors such as Dun & Bradstreet, InsideView, Artesian Solutions, and ZoomInfo have offered sales triggers based upon executive changes, funding events, M&A, etc.. D&B Hoovers, along with many European vendors that process registered filings data, includes data change alerts (e.g., credit score change, revenue growth) and registered filings. As vendors are now adding in visitor intelligence and intent signals, there is the risk of quickly overwhelming sales reps with alerts. And since most vendors do not yet offer workflow solutions for filtering and automating sales activities, there is a strong likelihood that reps begin to view these alerts as noise instead of actionable signals. The more generalized the signal (e.g., website visits), the greater the possibility of signals being considered spam.
To further confuse things, Sales Engagement Platforms (SEPs) have emerged as sales automation platforms, but they are only loosely tied to a few of the sales intelligence vendors. In many cases, the functionality is simply Send to SEP functionality.
ZoomInfo and Vainu (see 3/21 issue) now tie together triggers and actions subject to filters. While there is still a risk that reps are overwhelmed (e.g., too many automated cadences being sent to SEPs), the filters help mitigate the risk and ensure that activity is focused on an organization’s best prospects and tied to event-specific messaging.
For technology sales, ZoomInfo offers technographic changes and Scoops. The Scoops dataset is gathered from official data (e.g., public filings, PPP loans), surveys, and in-house research teams. Daily, ZoomInfo reaches out to contacts in its database to gather market intelligence about projects and the challenges they face in their department. As an incentive, ZoomInfo offers an Amazon gift card or charitable donation to each respondent. The responses are the basis of many of their Scoops.
“We are constantly evaluating new sources and pieces of information that can provide value to our customers in the form of Scoops. Last year, our Scoop number increased greatly because of new processes and expanded information coverage, including the addition of Scoops directly related to PPP loan recipients. Through continued innovation and expansion, we anticipate that our Scoops volume will continue to increase over time. We have several in-house research teams dedicated to various types of Scoop coverage, and we utilize many of the same sources to gather Scoops that are laid out on our B2B Data Sources webpage, including updates from leadership webpages, news monitoring, public filings, and company-issued announcements.”
ZoomInfo Communications Director Steve Vittorioso
The Scoop volume doubled to 917,000 events in 2020.
While the primary Workflows use cases are focused on revenue acceleration, Workflows may also be used for executive recruitment.
Admins can edit, clone, run, or delete Workflows. They can also create workflows for non-admins or permit non-admins to create workflows subject to admin approval.
Non-admins have access to fewer integrations, cannot assign workflows to peers, and are subject to lower export limits.
Workflows do not support FormComplete, ZoomInfo’s webform, but the functionality is on the product roadmap.
Revenue Acceleration platform vendor Drift launched Drift for Salesforce, a new integration that creates and updates Salesforce Leads and Contacts then syncs chat conversations. Drift also offers the option to pass leads into Marketo, Pardot, Eloqua, or HubSpot.
Drift employs Contract Attribute mapping that derives contact attributes from chats, with both standard and custom attribute variables supported. Drift Admins map the variables between the two platforms and set overwrite rules at the field level.
When leads book sales meetings through Drift, the sales rep is assigned as the lead owner in Salesforce, a Salesforce event is created, and the chat transcript is stored as a live chat record once the chat has closed.
Drift also syncs with opportunity records, helping operations teams understand which Drift conversations impacted opportunities, the dollar value of the interactions, and which conversations influenced the deal. Thus, revenue operations teams can understand which conversations affected the bottom line, wherever they occurred across the buyers’ journey. Drift reports and dashboards assist with attribution.
“Drift’s pre-built reports and custom dashboards give you an at-a-glance view of your performance so you always have the information you and your stakeholders need – right at your fingertips. You can also use the app to analyze your performance across the business, by specific metric, or by teammate, so you can easily identify specific areas where you should double-down.”
Drift can also display customized welcome messages for target accounts and immediately route important contacts to sales reps.
Drift looks at the email and domain to map records. If a domain is new, then a new lead is created, but if the domain already exists, either a new contact record is created or the email is used to match the conversation to a current contact.
Drift for Salesforce is available for Enterprise, Unlimited, Developer, and Performance plans.
In other news, Drift ranked #6 on the Deloitte Fast 500 North American list, with 35,474% revenue growth between 2016 and 2019.
“We founded Drift because we recognized that we were going through a paradigm shift,” commented CEO David Cancel. “We were moving from a world where the company controlled the buying process — to one in which the buyer was in control. This is even more true now — and we’re just getting started. Our mission is to change the way businesses buy from businesses, and we’re thrilled that our customers have chosen us to create frictionless, more human experiences.”
Drift announced its new Revenue Acceleration Platform, which it described as a new category that expands its original positioning of Conversational Marketing to a broader company vision.
Revenue Acceleration “combines conversation, marketing, and conversational sales to help companies grow revenue and increase customer lifetime value,” said Drift CEO David Cancel.
Drift still backs Conversational Marketing and Sales “100%,” but is expanding its vision of marketing to impacting the entire customer lifecycle “from acquisition to renewal to expansion.”
“We weren’t thinking big enough,” posted Cancel.
Cancel described marketing as evolving across a series of eras. In the 20th century, “the madmen era,” marketing focused on the brand and didn’t have a seat in the C-Suite. Marketing was “in service to the CEO.” The Internet brought us the second era, “the demand generation era,” when “we became reliant on do-it-yourself in human ops,” and the CMO role was created. Marketing focused on lead creation and was “in service to the CRO.”
However, the world of marketing is continuing to evolve. Demand generation is “not enough anymore.” We are now entering the third era, “the revenue era,” which is broader than Drift’s original vision of Conversation Intelligence.
“We had a vision of the world where people are free to have a conversation with any business, at any time, on their terms. We thought what we were doing was helping marketers drive more leads. But what we found is that when companies adopted Conversational Marketing, it wasn’t just about marketing. In fact, what we were doing was unifying sales and marketing and directly impacting revenue. And not just revenue from new business, but revenue across the entire customer lifecycle. We have already seen this transition with some companies.”
Drift CEO David Cancel
COVID-19 has accelerated the transition to this new era where the buyer is in control, “digital is everywhere, and the best experience, story, and service wins.” The new Revenue Acceleration Platform brings together Drift Chat, AI [chatbot] Automation, email, video, and a new Drift Prospector service.
ZoomInfo unveiled the 2.0 version of its Growth Acceleration Platform to customers at its Growth Acceleration Summit in Boston this month. Amongst the new features are a refreshed user interface, email tools, and expanded prospecting variables including Product / Vendor technographic selects. The upgraded platform is currently in beta with general availability in Q4.
According to the firm, “ZoomInfo’s Growth Acceleration platform combines the most comprehensive and actionable B2B market intelligence with tools that help optimize sales and marketing effectiveness, jumpstart growth, and maximize proﬁtability.”
The new user interface is cleaner and supports dynamic display which adjusts by form factor. All of the pages, including company and contact profiles, employ a common look and feel. Prospecting was simplified with complex stacked queries being less prominent. However, they are still available to ZoomInfo’s data services team and power users.
Prospecting added product / vendor selects licensed from HG Data. Multiple products may be entered for screening with the system defaulting to a Boolean OR (AND is supported, but the user needs to enter a multi-product Boolean string with AND logic).
Prospect lists may be maintained as dynamic lists (saved searches) or as fixed saved lists. The system displays updated counts as each variable is selected. Zoominfo also allows users to suppress contacts purchased in lists in the past six months from search results and when building other lists.
Records may be uploaded from Outlook, Office 365, and Salesforce for enhancement and targeting. Enhanced list analytics include pre and post data quality scores along with segmentation analysis. The Enhance Preview provides an analysis of the input data quality file, as well as a detailed report on what information was added, corrected, or confirmed using ZoomInfo’s data. The Data Profile tool shows users a breakdown of information about the user’s list, including top industries, job titles, revenues, and employee count.
Users can also upload an ABM account list for key contact targeting.
Company profiles include an expanded set of social media links (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube), related companies (licensed from Owler), and technology data. Tech data is displayed as summary product counts by category. The rep clicks on the product category to expand it by product. Unfortunately, the service does not support customized filtering of products or categories by key competitors or complementary platforms. As HG Data supports thousands of products, it would be a nice enhancement to support pre-configured product categories and products. Otherwise, valuable account planning insights may be obscured.
Contact profiles now display more information about the company associated with the profile without the need to navigate to a separate profile.
The ReachOut Chrome connector, which provides on-demand company and executive intelligence from websites and LinkedIn, exports to Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, Outreach, and SalesLoft. Users can also send emails from within LinkedIn.
A new Outlook connector provides contact profiles from within Outlook along with one-click add to Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, Outreach, and SalesLoft. Salesforce duplicate checking is employed if it is turned on. Users can upload records from Zoominfo’s ReachOut Chrome connector or Outlook as either Leads or Contacts / Accounts (previously this was only available from the Growth Acceleration Platform). ZoomInfo will create Account records for Contacts if one does not exist in SFDC.
This feature helps with researching buying committee members and influencers.
While ZoomInfo partners with Account Based Sales Development (ABSD) vendors Outreach and SalesLoft, ZoomInfo has added light ABSD email features such as email templates and live email tracking. Templates include dynamic tags for information such as contact name and company name which fill in automatically with ZoomInfo data. Emails are sent from the user’s default email program.
The ZoomInfo global database has grown to 220 million professional profiles (both active and inactive) and 13 million companies. The dataset is updated continuously based upon web crawlers and a 300,000 user community that shares email signature data. Zoominfo offers one of the deepest sets of contacts with emails and direct dial numbers.