William Tyree presents data collected from 250+ B2B companies to understand how technology has contributed to their growth. Companies are spending an increasing amount of money on technologies and this presentation talks about how to best distribute budget to stay on top of tech trends.
William Tyree is the CMO of Revenue.io, a company that powers high-performing teams with real-time guidance. William creates winning teams that result in exponential growth, strategic account expansion, and high-impact brand experiences.
“We have looked in conversations. We have email conversations, we have chatbot conversations on our website, we have conversations all over the place, and all of those can be better and we can drive better conversations and all of that occurs in different places in the buyers journey and so when we think of customers is almost redefining what you think of a conversation and then surfacing the next best actions no matter where they’re at in their journey.”
- Technology use in sales and marketing is at an all-time high
- Budget allocation for tech is rising, more money is available to purchase tech
Hi, everyone. Welcome to our session. We’re here to talk about the 2022 sales hacker in a sales automation track at Red tech. I’m William Tyree, CMO of revenue.io. I’m joined by the esteemed Jordan Henderson, Senior Director of DevOps here revenue.io and the host of the Reb ops podcast, Jordan. Hey, thanks for having me. Good day. Good to see ya. Good to be here. Really exciting. So thanks to the rep tech conference and chat bundles for having us. We’re here to talk about the 2022 sales stack. And, you know, we’re here in the sales automation track and, you know, we’re just really forcing on the timing here as we just unleashed a report that we did in concert with robots squared and our friends at 10 bound and demand Bay’s where we actually look at the technologies that 250 plus b2b companies are using. As you can see, you know, that we’ve got people from all over the map in terms of who’s in these companies, right, everybody from sea levels to individual computer, contributors, executives. Most of the folks were from sales, a lot from marketing and we see Customer Success representative here, but lots of definitely a Reb ops crowd, I would say on this one, for sure. In you know, the great news is we can get a lot of insights out today. We only have so much time at the end. We’ll tell you how to actually get this report. We’re happy to send it directly to you because there are lots and lots of stats and actual data in there. But we’re going to focus today on how much are your peers spending on sales tax, which solutions are b2b teams adopting most by category? Because I just I always know before when I’m looking for a solution I want to know who else is adopting it, I want to know what’s trending in the market, all that kind of stuff. And actually, to what we’re gonna wrap with is, once you look at the categories, what are we actually automating, right, which roles really benefit most from these solutions? Alright, ready to get into it? So already the first one is terrifying to me, by the way, how much you’re spending on sales tech a lot is probably the answer that question. It’s, it’s totally a lot it actually let’s let’s just kind of set the table here. So I would say that the most reputable report from say we look back four or five years ago, was a ISP, did a research on enterprise companies, and they found that your average enterprise sales team and b2b was spending around $260 per rep. So that’s just 2017. It’d be really nice. Right? I wish I could spend that. I know, I know. But now we’re seeing 30% invest more than $500 17% or the $1,000, which is a big increase in the interesting thing about the data too. Is how much things change. What’s your company? It’s the $20 million and a or mark. That seems to be the inflection point where the likelihood that you’re going to spend $500 Plus, you know, and that’s per month per rep just goes up drastically. It honestly surprises me that only 70% are spending $1,000 or more per rep per month that that number seems low to me. I don’t because if you’re counting just your CRM, you’re not maybe you’re happier a quarter of the way there probably per rack right and so so that means that a lot of businesses aren’t investing in in a broader array of technologies. They’re investing in one, two or three tools. If you get into that for tool territory that’s probably get to that $1,000 per month. I’m not surprised that’s gone up 10% Over the past year, but I would expect that it’s going to hit you know, probably more like 30 40% in the next couple years because people are gonna there are more tools available that are doing powerful things and you will lose your competitors if you don’t have those tools in the near future. And so I think that number will keep increasing also the cost of things is gonna keep increasing. So that’s what stands out to me. 17% of $1,000 or more, that means a lot of people are under tools right now. Yeah. Well, that number is growing a lot. I agree with you. People are under tooled. I also think, too, you know, if you look at the sales tech landscape, and there’s 1000 Plus providers there you know, a thing that Forrester pretty last year which I can fully believe is that we’re seeing a lot of tech conversions. Right. And and because you know, the the pressure to spend more is only going to get higher. I think that we’re going to see just, you know, a lot of these platforms include more and more things all in one totally Yeah, to some degree that will help you control your cost here a little bit, right. Like, if I can if I can get my intended out of my data provider, rather than have to have a separate file for it that that will lower my cost per rep for sure. Like there’s gonna be a lot of that that’s gonna have to happen because otherwise companies zooms to be too expensive. That’s just going to be the reality. Well, yeah, not to mention the burden on operations, right? Yeah, I would rather not have 50 to implement across my team for sure. And there’s an additional cost there. Right. And one of the things that I’d love to I actually haven’t seen the data on it, maybe it’s something we should pull at our businesses, tools per operations professional, right, or cost per operation professional because when my team manages 10 tools, we are far more efficient than when we managed and as a business, we’re more efficient and that’s the reality. We can go do other things to do a lot more. And the more tools you have at sales, the more tools you have the market watchers SES, the less time my team has revenue operations team has to actually go do revenue operations and aligning those teams and powering the revenue funnel. Right. So I’d love to see that too. On top of this. Absolutely. Well, at some point we’ll have to do an hour just on just on like discipline and like you know, ratio of tools per operator and things like that. It’s it’s a fascinating conversation. Yeah. Okay. Well, we look at current tech adoption across the landscape. You know, no surprise on top their sales engagement technology is the most adopted, I would imagine that we’re not going to see that change anytime soon. There’s just such a big need for it. Sales intelligence, same thing more relevant than ever and then of course, we’re talking about companies like zoom info, you know, Dun and Bradstreet in there’s a lot more specialized sales intelligence companies as well that are that are bringing in, you know, third party data intent data, and things like that across the landscape, even even CI to like dabbles in that right. So so I don’t think that that is going anywhere anytime soon. But the thing that really surprised me though, is I know we’re seeing really big valuations and and a lot of heat in the space for conversation intelligence, but I was not expecting that to be the third most adopted technology this year. Two up hugely year over year. Yeah, that’s that’s a It’s not totally surprising to me, I guess just because, like, it feels like the it’s a huge increase, but in the remote era, I don’t know how you coach people properly without conversation intelligence. I think that’s it’s driven a huge need there. At least at least in my mind, I don’t know how we would exist without conversation intelligence from from, you know, managing a fully remote sales team and, and with the shift inside sales, but it is a massive amount of number. The thing that’s surprising to me, is that a lot of these things, at least in my opinion, should be sort of a revenue operations platform, right? So if I’m, if I’m thinking of like sales, engagement platform or conversation intelligence, I’m not thinking of that just as a cadence helping me coach my sales reps. I’m thinking that’s how do I use conversation intelligence across my entire entire revenue operation, right, like I want my marketing team using CI to actually call us and learn from an OMS CS team using it in order to like provide better feedback on funnel and things like that. So I guess the shocking thing to me is we’re sort of still breaking this into a lot of people are thinking in these this sales engagement all this sales telogen Oh, this is this when I think a lot of them are actually probably multifunctional and maybe not getting the most value out of them. That’s that’s completely true. I you know, I also think that what’s funny we’re really close to conversation intelligence, obviously revenue audio it’s it’s something that that we obviously offer, but he I can’t imagine going back to a world like you where your anybody is coaching successfully without it so it’s possible that the pandemic also just just added to the the moment any increase there when it comes to sales engagement tech, too. I I know too, that there’s still a lot of companies out there. Sometimes really big companies that are still using say, like call center software, to power their sales team and I know that those sales leaders a lot of times are happy with that situation. They’re looking to make the shift, but it’s interesting. I think I’m still surprised sometimes. I frankly, am surprised that sales engagement isn’t higher than 51%. But that again, I mean, we talk to companies all the time, that are still using something that we would consider completely substandard for that. Yeah. And the other piece of this that I think is totally fascinating is the fact that all of these minus sales engagement are below 50%. That means there’s a large subset of companies out there who basically are using any of these are using one or two of these things. And, and there’s probably I would guess, a group of companies that is using five of these different things that are wildly disconnected and not communicating with one another. Thus, you know, automating things you’re missing data and all that sort of stuff. It’s just seems like at least at least to me, it seems like a very disjointed slide I guess, or a very disjointed tech stack is what this adds up to either a non existent or very disjointed one and that that stands out to me that’s terrifying. To be honest, this slide gives gives me anxiety, completely agree. Well, speaking of which, you know, one of the things that we’ve talked about a little bit is rap. So last year, this number was 7% for Reb ops adduction. So it looks like it’s set to actually double again, have that look for that to be higher next year. But I think, you know, I was on a podcast yesterday where somebody again asked me to define like, you know, what is the breadbox platform right in and I think that there’s a few different definitions floating around just like there’s different positions of sales engagement platform, right. But I really like Gardner’s definition of this for a couple of reasons. So I thought I’d float this and then we can talk about other things that it does Jordan from an operational perspective, but Gartner says look like things that Reb ops can do for you. But there’s two really critical things that you must have, right. One is, you know, activity capture across all the channels. In we’ll talk a little bit more honored final item on on what kinds of things we’re really automating there, right? But then conversation intelligence for analysis surfacing next best actions, right because I mean, it’s really interesting. So activity capture is something that’s been happening for, you know, more than a decade, I think, in the sales tax. But I think a lot of companies get started with say emails or it started with all right, that’s definitely getting like more multi channel and then I think the other thing though, the white conversation intelligence is really talking about like any interactions that you have with a buyer or a customer and in trying to gather signals from that to help you forecast more accurately to help you you know, scale, you know, success patterns across your team, things like that. At least I take a look at your boards. Yeah, I think it’s I think the copywriting team it Garner’s like mad props for this, because I think it’s a very cleverly worded definition. It works. It’s very simple. And it works because when I think of DevOps platform, I think of something that is a data layer and providing insight across my entire organization in real time in a way that see what did I have to put in a decision that’s for me, the most important things so I look at their definition across all engagement channels, that is everywhere across revenue positions, marketing, sales, customer success, because you’re still with the buyer at all of those channels. Right. And then conversation intelligence. It’s I think we’re gonna think conversations as being on the phone to you and I have a conversation right now. But that’s the only way we have conversations. We have looked in conversations. We have email conversations, we have chatbot conversations on our website, we have conversations all over the place, and all of those can be better and we can drive better conversations and all of that occurs in different places in the buyers journey and so when we think of customers is almost redefining what you think of a conversation and then surfacing the next best actions no matter where they’re at in their journey. So if they’re on the website, they’re having a chatbot competition that is top of funnel right and if they’re having a conversation on a video call, that is that is middle they’re literally a customer already. So what’s the next best actions across all conversations, music, revenue operations? I think it’s an awesome definition. I think it’s really cleverly worded and it sort of makes you redefine conversations and how you think of engagement channels to embrace our buyers journey. But I think it’s awesome. It’s great definition. I could never have written it. I’m super disappointed. Really long time but But alright, so kind of finishing off here. You know, we’re in the sales automation track here at rep tech. And, you know, big picture. I mean, what does this all mean? What does it add up to? Right? What kinds of things are really people automating? And, you know, just my take is, I think starting it, we talked a little bit about, you know, the importance of data capture. And I put the word truly in front of it. I think for the first time for some companies, it really is about truly automating. You mentioned all the different types. of conversations that Jordan Yeah, it’s it’s not just calls, it’s not just emails, it is, you know, text it’s conversations from chat bots, all those things that you imagine so it really is making sure that across sales success in some cases, support hopefully, especially support when it comes to like certain industry. In marketing, you’re really capturing all of it in trying to get like a complete picture of the customer. Right? That’s where I see especially sales engagement going but also as it ties into competition intelligence, fully agree. I mean, the biggest thing is, if you’re not capturing all of those different data points, you’ve been in such a significant part of your buyers experience. I mean, any one of those missing is missing, you know, 25% of your buyers experience, which means all of your database decisions coming out of that activity absolutely are flawed, frankly, that’s right. That’s right. And without that I think we just have a really hard time. Truly personalizing the experience. I mean, great reps will awesome questions. They’ll do their research and everything and they always find no matter what tech they have great reps will find a way but it makes it so much easier if actually you’re giving reps the contextual insights. So I think you know this. The second thing here is just these ear Howard insights. We talked about the ability to kind of scrape all this information, store it somewhere and then you know, get get learnings especially on across your team you’re looking at, you know, say you have it’s a 10 reps 50 reps, whatever it is, what are the habits of, you know, kind of top performers, what are they the lowest performers and and try to then seal that across? I mean, Jordan, I know right now you’re you’re running SDRs right. So like, so like, you know, what are the kind of some of the key things that you’re trying to automate of learning so that you actually have tied to your job, right? like, that’s the things that I try to automate as an SDR manager like, I want to automate the knowledge objection handling because there are unlimited lists. There’s probably two or three objects we get all the time, but there’s really like an unlimited depth to how somebody can object to you on a call. There’s a cold calling people, right. And so we got to automate the coding on that’s just probably you heard this objection, here’s what you can start. Here’s what you should have. Moving forward in coding in real time on an ongoing saves me as their manager from having to go listen to 75 phone calls and tell them and we for the next six weeks Hey, you got this objection, you should take us it’s automatically doing that which is which, by the way, and we take that, hey, these are the objections, we get the most kick that up to marketing and say, Hey, marketing, can we tweak the ads a little bit so that we stopped getting this objection, because it’s killing us a little bit. And that helps my SDR team too, right. And those are all AI powered. Insights for us. I don’t have to have a business analyst. Go tell me what keywords we’re hearing the most in our conversations or what objections we’re hearing the most. It’s telling me that it’s providing me that data and I know what I need to fix without really doing anything, which is nice. That’s our awesome examples. I absolutely love that. And by the way, Jordan walks the talk is actually doing those things which is fantastic. Yeah, it’s as busy as it makes me Yeah, yeah. Yeah. But But honestly, if it wasn’t for see, you know, conversation intelligence, you probably wouldn’t time to even go down that path, which is great. And, you know, I think the next one here is is definitely an emerging trend.And that’s the idea of real time conversation guidance. Right? So yeah, with traditional what we think about about traditional conversation intelligence, learning from conversations, say in like, you know, web video meetings, Zoom meetings, calls, things, emails, things like that. We can do all those things we talked about, but this is different. This is actually I think, in many ways. It’s a replacement for the training or you’d have a whisper function. And maybe you’d be live coaching maybe like maybe for five years ago, teams go even sitting next.Your rep right during a live call and kind of doing that Cyrano thing, where you’re telling them what to say next, or how to how to respond. This is actually like automating critical moments in deal points that are common. Like, you know, Jordan, you mentioned sales objections as one of them. This is where the AI is literally saying you know, hey, it sounds like they just asked this question. Here’s something you might want to say or by the way, I didn’t hear you ask this critical question, right. Like, you need you need to, like fit this into the conversation right now. Jordan, what are what are kind of other examples? Yeah, I mean, that that one’s the easiest one. One of the one of the ones that I was actually surprised to me that is used very heavily in real time conversation guidance is a lot of compliance type stuff. There’s a lot of financial people, for instance, are required to say hey, this is so and so from doing license number XYZ, giving you a call about ABC. And just reminder like putting that reminder on the screen for that ensures compliance to a degree right and it’s creating that scenario where that’s the reality and, and that that’s one that I thought was really interesting. But on top of that, when we go back to like the objections, that’s how we’re using this we’re doing this in real time and, and our you’ve heard him say it probably 40 times but our VP of Sales round for Ebbinghaus forgetting curve 15 to 20 times a week. For no enemy list, he doesn’t know what the Ebbinghaus forgetting curve is because I expect most people wouldn’t because it’s an obscure thing relatively. Essentially that like you, anything you’re coached on or learn you forget 95% of it within 30 days. And that’s true of essentially all people right. And so I think it is in a lot of ways as battling at the Ebbinghaus forgetting curve because I can constantly remind you, you need to do this, you need to do this, you need to do this, or you know, teach you how to handle objections to teach you the right people to call. But if you have something that’s automating that in real time when it hears you in that moment, that’s going to prevent you from forgetting it because it’s a constant reminder of the thing that you’ve learned. And therefore, we are beating the Ebbinghaus forgetting curve, which is incredibly powerful from a sales enablement standpoint hugely. The last thing here that we want to talk about really quickly was just content recommendations. I think one of the greatest things to come from the IBM and sales tag is actually the ability to recommend, you know, content in real time. And we’re starting to see this in several different solutions out there. And one things i like it is, is it’s really not that innovative to have an on demand content library for your sales team. You definitely need it reps should have that they they absolutely need it. But what’s possible today though, is to just recommend context, content in context. Whether it’s an email, whether it’s yes, different conversation. I just think that is much more powerful and it’s probably one of going to be one of those things where I think we look five years down the road. And we look at why did sales productive and Reese again, I honestly think this could be one of the best things to happen. I mean, Jordan, what’s your take on it? No, I agree. I mean, I think of in a lot of ways, right? When I think about content is are we sending the right response to you know, specific things or where lead sourcing is come from? Are we providing, you know, actual marketing content that’s relevant and pertinent to this person? And I would guess most people listening to this if I asked you if you feel 100% confident that your team is doing both of those things really well. Nobody would raise their hands. fixing that problem is going to be fundamentally it’s going to increase sales productivity massively because you’re gonna be meeting the buyer where they are right I’m resending content. It’s actually relevant to that person, particularly each time based on what they’ve told me from all of our multiple conversations. And all the data that we’re capturing. And so, yeah, I mean, I think it’s going to increase sales, productivity massively, and, frankly, align sales and marketing a lot better. I think the content is going to be collaborative across those two departments and in that it’s going to be a lot more alignment based on both to converting marketing leads and increasing sales productivity from an outbound standpoint. So I think I think it’s an awesome feeling content is, well, some of the more that that’s it. That’s it awesome, and they said, so. Just just you know what to tell people out thank you for joining us so much. We really appreciate the time. Second, this isn’t, is chock full of so much more than the things that we’ve discussed today. We’re, there’s things a lot of things in here around marketing sales and CS alignment, even you know, down to like what is the meeting structure look like? Who’s leading rev ops, how much is like our SDR teams really contributing to pipeline, you know, things like that. So, definitely a lot of things that people can do. So go to revenant IO and get it there. Also, you know, feel free to connect with Jordan or myself on LinkedIn. If you have questions about this or you want to get engaged. We’d love to hear from you. That was awesome. Thanks for Thanks for having me on. Yeah, everybody. Feel free to send me the old invite on LinkedIn. I look forward to it. Awesome. Thank you all