All posts by Moon Rattanakone

InsightNow – “Customer Experience And Identifying Opportunities”

InsightNow was founded in 2007 with the purpose of collecting the voices of  customer and employees and using this insight to develop easy customer journeys for their customer’s customers.

As digital channels develop both the amount of feedback available and the richness has increased. Whilst their purpose remains the same our emphasis has moved from gathering structured feedback to a much greater reliance on understanding what customers are saying and feeling in their free text comments. They are able to unpack and classify comments into actionable themes with  associated positive and negative sentiments to create a much more accessible and engaging means of understanding customer feedback that connects and resonates through all parts of of their clients organisation.

This enables them to  provide  direct line of sight between strategic intent and the actual customer experience and identify opportunities for real-time service recovery through to  elimination of glitches and their root causes that prevent the intentional experiences being delivered.

http://www.insightnow.co.uk/

SaaS Trends: Explaining The 15x Growth In Inside Sales Model

 

According to research from Vorsight and Insidesales.com, jobs for inside sales rep’s are growing 15x times faster and than traditional field sales; VentureBeat’s Inside Sales Landscape shows there are 669 sales-related technology start-ups in 2017; and the category of sales acceleration technologies has already pulled in more than $1.2 Billion in VC investments.

Sales methodologies have changed, and ‘Inside Sales’ is trending faster than fidget spinners and the latest Minecraft meme. The trend bodes particularly well for companies looking to expand into international markets, as it lowers up-front risks and costs.

Especially in the technology sector—and even more acutely in sales of SaaS services—the time-honored approach to prospecting, qualifying, and closing sales revenues is morphing radically in response to new workforce demographics, new sales technologies, and new customer expectations.

“Source: VB | Profiles”

What does the inside sales trend mean for CEOs and CROs, and what should your sales organization be doing about it? Here are 4 drivers that explain the inside sales trend, and that your sales management exec’s need to understand right now.

1) Sales closing cycles are accelerating: While large enterprise deals in the past might have required 6-12 months from to courting-and-close, a well-oiled inside sales team might do the same in 30-90 days. How?

– Forget getting on an airplane and instead use inside sales to increase the velocity of sales processes. Especially with SaaS products, it’s not about getting 10 meetings per week anymore. It’s about giving prospects the tools and information to qualify themselves at your website, and then answering whatever questions remain so that they feel comfortable moving forward with a free trial or paid pilot.

– Inside sales processes better optimize the handoff from marketing to sales. According to research from HubSpot, at least 44% of inside sales’ pipeline typically comes from marketing, and marketing automation tools allow those better quality leads by analyzing and fine-tuning a larger volume of prospects at the top of the funnel.

– Try rapid iterations in your high-velocity sales approach, and double-down on channels and techniques that are gaining the traction. Start by creating buyer ‘personas’ of your ideal customer and then gather whatever data you can to analyze the buyer journey and decision psychology. Using a more data-driven approach, instead of relying on the ‘gut’ of your best sales reps can increase sales volume and lower your sales costs.

– And finally, make it painless (or automatic) to schedule a meeting or demo by using free online tools like Calendly or Doodle. Remember also to make it easy to sign the contract! HelloSign and Docusign can help there.

2) Workplaces are now global: Companies operate in a global context and target prospects can procure from anywhere. Inside sales teams can be located in any country.

– Connected technologies have created a global marketplace and workplaces where colleagues can be sitting in different parts of the world yet still collaborate effectively. Video messaging apps let people have a face-to-face experience with anyone, without leaving the office.

– Likewise, sales people can be hired anywhere in the world—to localize inside sales processes to suit local cultures, and to call on prospects in their time zones to provide support and that final push.

3) SaaS and Services are proliferating: Mega-$$$ enterprise software deployments are fewer and fewer, replaced by SaaS services and monthly subscriptions. Front-loaded field sales processes are too expensive and risky for these types of deals.

– Subscriptions services can be found everywhere now, from your dinner meal delivered at home to your e-mail host at work. The proliferation of SaaS technologies has matured beyond hosting and storage and security, and is now driving the rise of inside sales as the SaaS mentality and technology is finding its way into marketing and sales processes.

– Along with inside sales processes, sales compensation models for SaaS products should be calculated based on lifetime value of the deal (expressed as MRR or ARR or TCV) versus price.

– This influx of SaaS technologies and on-demand services is driving the trend to measure and optimize everything, including sales processes.

4) Workforce demographics are changing: Your target buyer is likely a Millennial who is not interested in having lunch and more likely to respond to inside sales’ self-help product materials and marketing’s digital funnel campaigns.

– A sea change is happening in the demographic of tech buyers and tech salespersons. Millennials already dominate the workforces in the majority of technology companies, and GenZ is entering now. These new workers have already impacted everything from HR policies to office food choices, and they are a major force behind the inside sales trend as well.

By using modern inside sales methodologies, companies can capitalize on these trends and lower their overall cost of sales. In particular, companies can reduce the risks and costs of sales expansion into new markets and geographies like Europe.

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SFE is a pioneer of the Sales-as-a-Service model, starting in 2003. More than 200 enterprises have trusted SFE to expand their sales into Europe and other international regions using our acclaimed Accelerated Sales Platform. Our Platform includes Accelerated Market Analysis, Accelerated Lead-Gen, and Accelerated Sales modules, which can be delivered as an integrated service or as stand-alone modules.

If your company is looking for the latest sales methodologies to reach enterprises and channels throughout Europe, SFE can help you. Let’s talk. –Rick

Contact Us Today!

Xeerpa – “Big Data Marketing Solution”

Xeerpa is a Big Data marketing solution that allows brands to explore the social world of each of their customers, fans and followers, by analyzing the information they share across popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, among others.

Unlike other solutions, Xeerpa creates unique profiles for each user, storing them in a database specifically designed to help you personalize your marketing campaigns, increasing ROI and improving customer experience.

https://xeerpa.com/home/

DB Pro – “Forerunner In Microsoft SQL Server Cost Optimization”

DB Pro Oy is a forerunner in Microsoft SQL Server cost optimization. They also specialize in SQL Server platform planning and implementation projects and comprehensive performance optimization. In addition to solid expertise and experience, their strengths include flexibility and speed.

DB Pro Oy takes special pride in Governor® software – a unique product we have developed for the optimization of the capacity of SQL Server platforms. Governor® combines ease of use with efficiency and scalability – from small one-server systems to the largest platforms, with thousands of servers.

Their customer base consists of large and medium-sized companies representing a broad range of industries, such as logistics and trade, manufacturing-based industries, and SaaS software production. Over the years, their satisfied customers have praised DB Pro’s ability to solve their problems and improve the efficiency of their operations.

https://www.sqlgovernor.com/en/

Sales Force Europe – “Becomes International Sales Partner for HubSpot”

March 2017

SFE has joined the HubSpot Sales Partner Program to bring the HubSpot software to clients and enterprises throughout Europe.

The HubSpot Sales Partner Program empowers CRM implementation companies and sales consultants to teach a modern inbound sales methodology to match the way modern buyers make purchasing decisions. As a HubSpot Sales Partner, SFE works with a dedicated HubSpot growth coach to automate and improve sales processes for its clients and prospects by leveraging HubSpot CRM and HubSpot Sales.

About HubSpot

Since 2006, HubSpot ($HUBS) has been on a mission to make the world more inbound. Today, over 23,000 customers in more than 90 countries use HubSpot’s award-winning software, services, and support to transform the way they attract, engage, and delight customers.

HubSpot Sales enables sales and service teams to have more effective conversations with leads, prospects, and customers. HubSpot CRM helps sales teams organize, track, and grow their pipeline. All platforms integrate right out of the box and are available for free to start.

https://www.hubspot.com/

How to Sell Trust

March 1, 2017

TRUSTe offers a broad range of solutions to help businesses manage all aspects of data privacy management. From consulting to help define a company’s privacy strategy, to privacy assessments and certifications, to their SaaS platform with modules to address a range of compliance needs.

Selling TRUSTe solutions to these companies—ranging from fast-growth start-ups to worldwide brands like Apple, eBay, GAP and Oracle—requires a deep knowledge of how to sell SaaS solutions cost effectively. And that is why they hired SFE.

The TRUSTe DPM Platform was purpose built to address complex privacy compliance and risk management challenges. The award winning SaaS solution was initially launched in 2011 and continuously expanded to address compliance reviews, cookie consent management, website tracker scanning, advertising compliance, data mapping, and much more. The SaaS technology solution is available via both self-service and managed service delivery options.

About TRUSTe

TRUSTe powers privacy compliance and risk management with comprehensive technology, consulting and certification solutions.

Based in San Francisco, we have two decades experience across all industries and a team of more than 150 professionals developing innovative solutions to address global regulatory and data protection requirements that govern the use of customer and employee information.

Our award winning Data Privacy Management Platform addresses all phases of privacy management including program development, data inventory, risk assessments, monitoring, and compliance reporting.

https://www.truste.com/

The Alexander Group – “Sales Management Consulting Services”

The Alexander Group provides sales management consulting services to the world’s leading sales organizations. When clients need to drive sales ROI and improve revenue, they look to the Alexander Group for data-driven insights, actionable recommendations, and most importantly, results.

The sales experts

Founded in 1985, they have served more than 1000 companies around the world and across all industries. This experience gives us not only a highly sophisticated set of best practices to grow sales — they also have a rich repository of industry data that informs all their recommendations.

https://www.alexandergroup.com/

MEMBER NEWS: 3 REASONS EUROPEAN TECH IS SET TO EXPLODE IN 2017

‘This article originally featured on Telecom Council”

European tech is awash in cash

There was $88 billion in M&A activity in deep tech[1] in 2016 (following three brisk years — roughly one deal per month since 2014).[2] Further, Brexit impact will be negligible – only 2% of respondents to an Atomico survey cited Brexit as a big issue. Most founders’ concerns remained (predictably) on key business issues, such as finding sources of funding, regional professional support (such as legal and accounting help), prevalence of engineering talent, and general risk aversion from banks and investors. In the past year, the first European technology companies valued at or over $10 billion, such as Supercell, emerged. Can the first $25 billion or $50 billion valuation be far behind?

European tech will become better distributed in 2017

In part due to Brexit, but also because of the standard network effects of big business (education expanding, governments raising technology funds, etc.), European centers of excellence will not remain so focused on the UK. London will cede some talent and capital to Paris, Berlin, Stockholm and Helsinki, and there are already secondary upstarts, including Munich, Zurich, Copenhagen and Lisbon. Interestingly, talent is the leading reason founders locate to a city, beating access to money by 27%.[3]

Further, there is a lot of dry powder being stacked up on the other side of the pond. U.S. Venture Capital Firms are investing more in Europe (average increase of 88% every year since 2011), and I believe we should expect an 80% increase again in 2017. Where this capital goes will depend on where the talent is, and that talent, perhaps tempted to remain in place (rather than migrate to the UK, which has been common for much of the past two decades), will build local engines of innovation all across the Continent.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Will Dominate Investment in Europe

Close to 1,000 deep tech startups, which include AI-based software, have been founded in Europe since 2014 with many more to come in 2017. $2.3 billion has been invested in deep tech in Europe since 2015, steadily increasing year over year – 4x the investment was made in 2016 versus 2011.[4]

Further, Europe has a recognized prominence in these fields, and top talent and entrepreneurship will become more regionally diverse. For example, there are already deep tech engineering centers of large U.S. tech companies (Amazon, Apple, Google, Microsoft) in Germany, the UK and Switzerland. But, just as interesting, new graduates specializing in AI are most abundant in London, Paris and, yes, Madrid and Barcelona, which means that Southern Europe, often an also-ran in technology-related fields, is getting in on the action.

Europe is coming into its own

Technology as a business is strong globally. The U.S. is frequently the fastest-moving engine of innovation, financing and leadership, but Europe has been showing signs that it is ready to assume the role of #2 – with the world’s second-largest GDP, a massive population of over 500 million, and a renewed – and healthy – distribution of talent, it is set to break new boundaries in 2017.

[1]  Deep Tech = AI (machine learning, speech recognition, NLP, etc…), VR&AR, IoT and Hardware (drones robotics); VR/AR = Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality and IoT = Internet of Things

[2]  Atomico | Slush, The State of European Tech; http://atomico.com/news/the-state-of-european-tech-2016

[3]  Atomico | Slush, The State of European Tech; http://atomico.com/news/the-state-of-european-tech-2016

[4]  Atomico | Slush, The State of European Tech; http://atomico.com/news/the-state-of-european-tech-2016

WebyClip – “Secure Networks Across Europe”

If you have shopped on eBay or Best Buy online and watched a video that matched your product search, you have touched WebyClip’s technology. The company develops an enterprise-grade platform that used artificial intelligence (AI) to automatically curate videos for visitors to online retailers and hospitality websites. WebyClip calls it ‘visual marketing.’

To better market and sell its game-changing technology, the Israel-based company hired SFE to position and sell its solution into retailers and hotel companies throughout Europe. Get ready for the ‘videoization’ of the Web!

About WebyClip
WebyClip pioneered automated video curation with an enterprise-grade, scalable video platform for online retailers and hospitality websites. Since 2013, WebyClip has been helping e-commerce marketers to automatically source the most relevant product videos from across the Internet, bolstering conversion rates and enhancing customer satisfaction.

Backed by the investments from Vertex, Magma, Maverick and iAngels, Webyclip is rapidly becoming a market leader for intelligent visual commerce, delivering digital shopping experience that are more inspirational, more entertaining, more educational and better converting.

http://webyclip.com/

Booking.com – “Reserves SFE for Global Sales Support”

January 1, 2017

When one of the best-known brands in the online reservations industry needs to expand their professional sales globally, whom do they turn to? To Sales Force Europe!

Although already a household name among consumers, Booking.com needs to sell hotel operators, bed-and-breakfasts and small businesses in the hospitality space.  That requires a lot of high touch, personalized contact via a team of sales professionals who know how to sell the SaaS business model (which, as we have blogged about, requires a very different sales strategy).

Booking.com came to SFE for our expertise in recruiting experienced and regional sales professionals.

About Booking.com

Booking.com B.V., part of the Priceline Group (Nasdaq: PCLN), owns and operates Booking.com™, the world leader in booking accommodations online. Each day, over 1,200,000 room nights are reserved on Booking.com. The Booking.com website and apps attract visitors from both the leisure and business sectors worldwide.

Established in 1996, Booking.com B.V. guarantees the best prices for every type of property, from small, family-run bed and breakfasts to executive apartments and five-star luxury suites. Truly international, Booking.com is available in more than 40 languages, and offers 1,220,754 active properties in 227 countries and territories.

https://www.booking.com/