ZoomInfo’s Philosophy on RevTech

Reading Time: 12 minutes

Overview: On January 27, 2021, ChatFunnels hosted the RevTech Summit, an online summit for marketing and sales professionals who want to set themselves up for success in 2021. Scott Sutton at ZoomInfo shares amazing insights about conversational intelligence, content distribution, and tracking. He talks about how ZoomInfo quickly captures leads and uses their data set to enrich the contact information. Billy and Scott also discuss chatbots and conversational AI, and how the adoption of that industry.

Guest: Scott Sutton is the VP of Revenue Operations at ZoomInfo. He specializes in Salesforce, data analytics, data science, and working with marketing to help navigate and optimize their tech stack systems.

 

 

Transcript

Billy: All right, everyone. Welcome to the RevTech Summit. Have you been watching the sessions throughout the day? I am Billy Bateman co-founder of ChatFunnels. And I have the pleasure of being joined by the Great Scott Sutton, VP of Revenue Ops at ZoomInfo. Scott, how are you doing today?

Scott: Great, Billy, thanks for having me. Really happy to be here at RevTech Summit. And I get to chat with you.

Billy: I’m excited as well. We’ve got some interesting things to talk about. Before we get into it, just tell everyone a little bit about yourself and what you do with ZoomInfo.

Scott: Awesome. Yeah, I’ve been at ZoomInfo a little over two years. Since I joined, it’s been some explosive growth, the IPO. A couple acquisitions along the way. So it’s been a really exciting time. It’s been navigating some interesting situations outside of the house. But yeah, it’s been a unique challenge. I lead Rev Ops here. And so it’s kind of everything Salesforce, data analytics, data science, working across the aisle with, with marketing to help us navigate and optimize our processes, tech stack systems. So a lot going on. But, uh, yeah, looking forward to some of the other talks. And I learned a few things along the way, too.

Billy: Yeah. So before we hop into like, what ZoomInfo is doing, I wanted to just ask you a little bit on your opinion with, your title is Revenue Ops. Do you report into sales? Do you report into marketing? Or is it a combination of both?

Scott: I roll up into the CRM org. And that encompasses now both sales and marketing. And so we, we work really well together and how we optimize both the sales process, we’re looking at how we optimize our marketing channels coming in. A lot of push toward understanding our attribution and our channel effectiveness. And then one of the unique things about revenue operations is rather than being focused completely on the dollar, and then the sales outcome, or being completely focused on the MQL and kind of a marketing-based outcome, we’re really able to blend better the overall process to maximize the company outcome and better align resources.

So I actually have had for a long time a marketing team in my own Rev Ops org, that’s doing tactical plays, using sales engagement tools. So it’s a really good hybrid and blend. And I think it’s part of the secret sauce of our success is having that fully threaded, operational, and kind of dialogue amongst organization.

Billy: Awesome, awesome. I think that’s a trend like just not ZoomInfo. But as we talked to our customers, like more and more of them are like, everybody’s kind of coming together and just being under like a growth or revenue department more than sales and marketing. So, you own the tech stack, largely over there at ZoomInfo. So I’m sure everyone wants to know, like, what does your tech stack look like at ZoomInfo.

Scott: We’ve evolved the tech stack. So I think a lot of our motion or it does revolve around Salesforce, we’re a Salesforce shop. And we’ve invested very heavily in that platform. And but one thing we’ve also been at the forefront of is all the different platforms to help enable digital selling. So we’re using zoom info for data. We’re using tools like gong to help understand , our intelligence around call recording and coaching of our reps, using tools like video card to send out data, sales, engagement, platform, outreach, as long as well as our tools engage.

One of the things that I do think differentiates us is, we’re now leaning really heavily in on tools like snowflake and using data analytics tools embedded in throughout our process, and being able to better curate our data and paint a holistic 360 of our customers and our prospects to better attack new business and the customer business. But a lot going on in the data front. That’s kind of our gig. But yeah, there’s a lot centering around Salesforce and snowflake.

Billy: Awesome. Awesome. So what’s your focus for 2021? And where are you guys looking to improve?

Scott: Yeah, I think if you’ve been following us in kind of what we’ve talked about in a lot of earnings calls and our progression or looking at international expansion in 2021, putting more concerted effort. They’re continuing to grow out our business. And we’ve been growing and growing. I think solidifying is an enterprise organization better serving our largest clients is an area of growth and continuing to expand our products we think expanding beyond the core of what our product is a lot of people think of us as a data provider solely and maybe doesn’t know all of the other things in the sales intelligence tools. We have some of the acquisitions we’ve made. So rounding out that as a big focus for me and the team here.

Billy: So are you guys integrating? You guys, as you mentioned, you’ve made some acquisitions, in the intelligence space and helping people. Your products are amazing. You do a lot more like, I used to just think of ZoomInfo is like, Okay, let’s go get a list. And we give it to the sales team. And they start dialing and emailing. So much more now, especially around intent. But are you working on deeper integrations with those tools? How are you evolving your own tech stack?

Scott: I think there’s a couple different ways. So there are a couple of the acquisitions from last year, with clickagy and ever string. On the clickagy front, it was really about bolstering the intent offering that we have, and even going into real time intent where you can actually see the moment that people are searching for your particular keyword search for your application and, and targeting in and then offering custom intent. I think people who have looked at the intent space, they’re always kind of pigeon holed into certain keywords, we’re going to be able to offer really bespoke custom audiences.

So for ChatFunnels, if you had a very particular niche that you wanted to go after, we could curate that for you, and help deliver it. And that’s, that’s really unique. It’s interesting, and it’s something that that I find value. Then ever string is really about continuing to bolster our database and the breadth and coverage. We are looking to expand our engaged product and, and offer more of a holistic offering for those who want to kind of go to market out of our application. So doing basic dialing and emailing directly from the platform.

Billy: Okay, yep. Awesome. So one of the things we talked a little bit about before recording this, it’s always so much to learn from, like your failures. So looking back on 2020, I’m sure you guys tried new things. What didn’t work in 2020?

Scott: Yeah, I think when I reflect on 2020, all of us were trying to understand what was going on. And I think the early story of 2020, for me was about shoring up all of our data, our tracking, our monitoring, and I don’t think it was it was as tight as I would have wanted it to be going into work from home, coming into the pandemic. Work from home really exposed the gaps that we had.

When you don’t have the feel of the floor, you can’t watch and see if someone’s showing up and putting 100% effort. And it required me to be creative. So I think it exposed for me a weakness that we had had, which was not necessarily buttoning up certain things to 100%, leaving it 90% 95% covered. Then those little gaps exposed themselves. And so that was a big opportunity for us to tighten up the data game, tighten up our holistic digital go to market, and tracking and monitoring. So it forced us into a lot of good, necessary change.

Billy: Yeah, I think it forced all of us. Talking about getting things like 90% done, we’re a small organization compared to ZoomInfo. And we went remote for a while we’re back in the office, mostly now. But, man, there were some things were like, wow, when you’re just like sitting next to somebody, you can do this. But when everyone’s in their home, like that process doesn’t work anymore. And you’ve got to automate it and, and make sure like, okay, we have your checks, everything’s working. So what is your go to market process right now? And how does the tech stack fit into it?

Scott: Yeah, we, in our in our go to market. So one thing we pride ourselves, and we talk a lot about is our responsiveness. And if you’ve heard our CEO, Henry talk, or Chris Hayes, our CRO, we’re very adamant about a 90 second turn on inbound. And so when, when a lead comes in, we’re really optimized to have speed and intelligence kind of throughout that whole process in a very short period of time.

So a lead comes in, we’re actually enriching data into that the moment the form is filled by machine learning models that are pulling in fit scores we’re bouncing off to determine if it’s customers or not. And then we have a very dynamic routing system that’s kind of optimizing and then as we go, and we, we route the demos, one of the things we did in 2020, was to build out a custom application. for ourselves to best kind of stratify our reps, rate meetings for quality toward a CV towards propensity to win and, and match these really tightly and create balance amongst our reps.

And while I think definitely routing is a very fine art, and there’s a lot behind it, I think one of the things I’m proudest of is how we leveraged our tech stack and some of our tools, we’re using distribution engine to, to route leads on the inbound, we’re using chili Piper and some of the functionality to have reminders on meeting notifications to help improve show rate. We’re leveraging the Google API to understand who’s available and not at given times. All of that kind of brought together into a more unified strategy.

And so were there some pieces were more buttoned up than others? I think, in 2020, we, we really brought it all together in a way that I’m proud of. And I think we have some interesting ideas for 2021, about how he can continue to lean into that and further optimize as we grow.

Billy: Awesome. So I mean, if you don’t mind sharing, what are some of those ideas for 2021?

Scott: Yeah, I think, like I said, In 2020, we were able to, scorecard, our reps and stratify and understand who was best suited to take a certain demo. So, Billy is excellent at taking enterprise accounts, that are great fits, and can really maximize those transactions, I want to get Billy in front of those types of clients.

So as best able to line them up, I think as we grow, and we now have 150 plus AE’s, specializing in certain core functions, where there’s a particular talk track a particular pitch, and a value proposition, allowing people to lean in further on some of those particular core areas, and then continuing to bolster the enterprise. It’s a specific type of sales cycle that requires a little bit different approach. And so specializing there, and we’ll see how it goes. I think I’m optimistic about it and how it can provide some better results for us.

Billy: Yeah, no, that’s, that’s a very interesting idea. And something, if you can crack that, that code, there’s a lot of money to be made there in being able to match people up to the best, the best AE for them for that demo, like that’s crucial, like the demo doesn’t go well. And your chances of selling them are not great, no matter how great the fit is.

Scott: Yeah, definitely. Awesome.

Billy: So how do you guys use your own products? In your go to market process?

Scott: Yeah, I joke, I’m the biggest user of ZoomInfo. I think that exists because I’m the guinea pig for all of our different features. So if I think about it, I talk a lot about our go to market.

And I think data is really underpinning the entire go to market. We talk about good data is necessary, but not necessarily sufficient to have an excellent go to market. If you don’t have rich data, it’s very hard to leverage the tools. Pretty much any tool in a really great way.

So when I think about outreach, it’s really hard to tailor campaigns and, and drive targeted outreach when I don’t have data on industry and segment and size and title and all of this. So from the beginning, I’m enriching, I’m bringing that data in, I’m using some of our propensity modeling that we have in our in our a ICP form complete brings the data in from the beginning. But it’s that foundational layer of data. Then I do a lot of data science modeling and other work throughout the entire process.

I think when it comes down to this more macro Tam analysis, understanding opportunity, where new pockets of expansion lie, having the industry data, the size, data revenue, it really helps out a lot. And one thing that is really unique, and I put a lot of time in in 2020 was around our data lake. We brought all the ZoomInfo data in all of our CRM, amplitude, data, our h data, and nested it all together.

And I could use what I have done in the customer base. I can understand who my clients are. And then apply that and source net new contacts for cold prospecting out of the data lake. It’s almost like having warm leads coming in because I can also use intent layered with behavior, marketing, previous marketing touches, title fit, company fit to kind of coalesce into this pseudo warm lead for my outbound call. I think that’s one thing I saw in 2020. It was just an explosion on our outbound side of productivity by leveraging all that data in a meaningful way.

Billy: Awesome, awesome. And I know you can’t really say this, but I will, the data from ZoomInfo, you’re going to be hard pressed to beat it. I really think you are. You could, I mean, other people have good data, but it’s going to be hard to top ZoomInfo. So let me ask you another question. Aside from zoom info, what are the new tools you’ve encountered in the last year so that in the revenue, the rep tech space that you’re like, Wow, that is a is a great tool. And it’s a good fit, and it’s going to be something people are using.

Scott: Yeah, I think that’s interesting. We were early. We were early to the game with some of the tools around conversational intelligence and content distribution and tracking, we when we leaned in harder around leveraging video like vidyard loom. As I look into 2021 and beyond, I think it’s going to pivot toward How do you bring the data together? And how do you create intelligence.

So I think a lot of the applications that are bringing a full 360 view. There’s a newer company called sin curry out there who’s helping to curate data and bring 360 views. There’s a lot of CDP type products. Google, excuse me, Salesforce has its new kind of 360, where you can bring all the different data together from all of the different cloud offerings that they have. But I think that’s going to be the story is, is the CDP type functionalities, the data merging the data lake building, because they make every other tool more effective, it’s going to make CRM better, it makes outreach and engage better, you can do more. I think the story is all of those applications working in sync together.

I think there are emerging players who are winning in certain lanes. And as they develop their integration and play more with each other, it’s going to be really quick ecosystem to leverage.

Billy: What I’m hearing is, conversational intelligence is one, just more video, I agree on both of those. And then as we, we did our survey as part of the, of the summit here. When I looked at it earlier today, it seems like most It was, like 70, or 80% of companies are not yet using conversational intelligence, like a gong, and exact vision. So I agree with you, that’s probably coming. And then I couldn’t agree more on just Hey, applications that help bring all the data together. And, if your application easily feeds into business intelligence or CRM, that give people that real insight so you can see what’s going on.

Scott: I think, Billy, the other thing, and this is clearly up your guys’ alley, chat is, is exploding. And I think it’s pivoting too. Early implementations of chat struggled because they tried to be AI. They tried to be smarter chat to completely replace the human. I think what we’ve realized is there’s a good symbiosis of the AI in the text. So I think one thing that we’re looking at is how do we improve conversion. And we talked about that 90 seconds. Chat is immediate, chat shows up on the page. It often precedes the form fill in, it allows me to get ahead. So I think we have a lot of thoughts about how we can leverage chat in in a variety of different ways.

And I think that I talked about the data, chat, married with data, and understanding and contextualizing who I am as I walk in the door. It’s so powerful. Because I can already tell that you’re Billy, you have this title. You come from chat funnels. You’re going to potentially need this solution from me. I came out of the gate have a really great chat experience. Versus Hi, who are you? Please enter name. Please enter this detail, all of the things that that traditionally hindered us. I think those are those have been my objection points. And I, I think we’re getting to the point where it’s becoming a very, very effective channel. And so I see us leaning in on that too. In 2021, as well.

Billy: Awesome. And, and I couldn’t agree with you more on like, trying to go all in on the AI and replace the human is not the way to do conversational marketing, or chat, whatever you want to call it. It’s all about, hey, use the bot to just like, automate the mundane things and use as much, we bring in data from places like ZoomInfo to try to identify, okay, who’s on the site, before you can have a conversation so we can one, decide what’s the best thing for this person to get an experience? Should we be asking them if they’re interested in the demo, or they want content or their customer needs support?

And then really connect them to the best person like you guys are talking about getting those demos matched up. We try to allow the same thing for our users. Like, route them to the most appropriate team or even individual user. So awesome. Scott, thank you so much for joining me and for joining us at the summit. And we’ll talk later.

Scott: Yeah, thanks so much for having me. I really appreciate it. Good luck with the rest of the event.

Billy: Thanks.