On this week in sales we’ll be looking at:
- Gong and Outreach raising a crap ton of money and what that means for the sales industry
- If you should swear at work
And much more!
AI-powered sales enablement platform Gong raises $250M
Enterprise sales enablement platform Gong.io today raised $250 million in a series E funding round valuing the company at $7.25 billion, more than triple its previous valuation ($2.2 billion). CEO and cofounder Amit Bendov says the new capital, which brings Gong’s total raised to $584 million, will be put toward product development, hiring, and customer acquisition.
Forty-six percent of business-to-business (B2B) sales reps list lead quantity and quality as their top challenge. That’s perhaps why Gartner predicts that by 2025, 60% of B2B sales organizations will transition from experience- and intuition-based selling to data-driven selling, merging their sales process, sales applications, sales data, and sales analytics into a single operational practice. The stakes are high, given that suboptimal and delayed leads can have catastrophic effects. Harvard Business Review found that there’s a 10 times drop in lead qualification when reps wait longer than 5 minutes to respond and a 400% decrease when they respond within 10 minutes versus 5 minutes.
Vidyard integrates with LinkedIn Messaging
Vidyard is unveiling a new product offering – integration with LinkedIn Messaging – and launching a new sales trainer partner program to expand its partner ecosystem
Today, the company is broadly releasing its new Vidyard LinkedIn integration. As an update to its popular Vidyard Google Chrome extension, the Vidyard LinkedIn integration is a free solution that extends Vidyard’s capabilities wherever users work.
Vidyard now makes it easy for salespeople to record and send a video right within the LinkedIn message composer. With one click, record with a webcam and/or screen share, or insert an already recorded video, then send it off to a LinkedIn contact and get notified when viewed.
Premium partners such as The RAIN Group, Sales Gravy, Corporate Visions, and Sandler Training are all a part of the launch of the new program, which includes other leading sales trainers such as #SamSales, On The Ball Ventures, In The Funnel Sales, Skaled, RevShoppe, SalesIQ, Sales Labs, Harris Consulting Group, Scott Leese Consulting, Sales For Life, CTS Solutions, and Blissful Prospecting.
Outreach Closes $200M Funding Round
Outreach, a sales engagement and intelligence platform, closed a $200 million funding round.
Specializing in optimizing the customer journey across the entire lifecycle, Outreach promotes collaboration at-scale by driving efficiency and effectiveness for marketing, sales development, closing and success teams.
With the added funding, Outreach plans to scale its sales and marketing organizations and invest in building, acquiring and delivering new technologies. The company also intends to expand and invest in new markets.
This new funding round follows two years of remarkable growth for the customer optimization platform. In 2019, Outreach secured $114 million in Series E funding, which brought its total valuation to $1.1 billion and earned it unicorn status.
Just last year, the company received $50 million in a funding round. This latest funding round raises Outreach’s valuation to more than $4.4 billion and brings its total funding to $489 million.
Poised Raises $4.5M Seed Round to Improve the World’s Spoken Communication
Poised is the first digital-coaching product to provide actionable, real-time feedback during online meetings.
Poised works with Zoom, Slack, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet, among other platforms, where it sits in the background and only records the speech of the person who is using it.
When Poised is turned on, it delivers real-time feedback on various aspects of the user’s communication such as confidence, clarity, energy, and empathy. It analyzes facets such as use of filler words, enunciation, pace and interruptions; provides transcripts with in-line suggestions; and provides tips for skill-development.
Poised leverages game thinking and social science techniques to make improving speech fun, to motivate progress and, ultimately, to change behavior.
Poised was created by co-founder and CEO Charles Hua, who previously held product leadership roles at Amazon Alexa, AWS,
Swearing on rise but parents still don’t want kids hearing it, report finds
The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) published a report on Thursday into attitudes towards swearing and whether people want a more liberal approach in media content.
It includes a survey of 1,000 people that found:
- Six in 10 people say strong language, such as the F word, is part of their daily lives.
- About a third of people say they use strong language more than they did five years ago. The figure is slightly higher for women (32%) than men (27%).
- There is a generation divide when it comes to swearing with 46% of generation Zs – people born after 1996 – saying they frequently use strong language. That compares with 12% for people aged 55-64.
- Asked about swearing in public, 65% of over-55s say they would never do it; for 18-24-year-olds the figure is 25%.
Fastly apologizes for outage, breaks down bug that hobbled major websites
In a blog post Tuesday, Nick Rockwell, Fastly’s senior vice president of engineering and infrastructure, said an “undiscovered software bug” was triggered by routine activity by a single customer. The San Francisco company said it detected the disruption “within one minute” and restored service to 95 percent of the network in 49 minutes.
Fastly runs a “content delivery network,” or a system of servers that its customers use to reduce the time it takes for their websites to load by storing larger files like images and videos closer to their end users. The 10-year-old company has a nearly $5 billion valuation.