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A smooth introduction to B2B outbound sales

August 10, 2020

In this article, we explore how a computer software provider used Cognism data to:

  • Explore B2B sales automation for the first time
  • Improve the accuracy and efficacy of their B2B lead generation
  • Produce results within 2 weeks of getting started
  • Increase their SQL volume by 80%

To find out how, scroll down! 👇

The company

Flowingly is a process mapping and automation software provider, established 4 years ago. Their aim is to make their clients’ lives easier by automating a lot of the processes that slow them down.

We spoke to Sean Wallace, the CRO of Flowingly, who was happy to share his Cognism journey with us. We asked Sean to summarise Flowingly’s mission.

“Process mapping and workflow automation, built for everyone. Flowingly is a people-first process management platform where teams can build, collaborate and improve upon their processes and workflows. It’s not built to be owned and managed by IT teams, it’s built to be owned by teams within the company. For that reason, Flowingly has to be easy to use.”

This sentiment was confirmed by one user, who claimed:

“Anyone who has ever drawn a flowchart can suddenly feel like an expert coder.”

For less technical clients, Flowingly makes the impossible, possible.

The challenge

Before discovering Cognism, Flowingly focused on marketing. Sean told us:

“We were in a situation where we were fully reliant on inbound leads. We were finding it hard to scale our prospecting, and our targeting was inconsistent. Close to 70% of our inbound leads were sitting outside of our ICP."

Flowingly had no previous experience with smart B2B sales. True to their mission statement, Sean began looking for a way of speeding up and simplifying the outbound process.

“We were doing a review of various tools on G2 when we came across Cognism. We decided that if we were looking to test the waters in smart outbound and sales automation, Cognism would be the best option. In terms of value for money, it’s very hard to beat.”

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The solution

It took Flowingly some time to sign off for a new outbound prospecting tool. Once they did, Cognism quickly found its place in their process.

“We signed up for the data, but we very quickly started making use of the outbound capabilities of Cognism, in terms of the sales automation. This was an added bonus that we hadn’t factored in. Being able to automate everything was huge for us.”

We asked Sean how the set-up process was for him.

“The tool is so easy to use. Our Customer Success Manager helped us throughout the process, but it’s the kind of tool we could have figured out ourselves if we’d needed to.”

Cognism’s Customer Success Manager has been in close contact with the Flowingly team.

“We’ve been in regular contact, at least once a week. It’s always been super. It’s been really easy to get in touch despite the time zone difference.”

This has been facilitated by Cognism’s international presence. Offices in New York and London allow the company to work around every client’s calendar.

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The results

With the help of Cognism’s B2B prospecting platform, Flowingly were able to improve the volume and quality of their leads. Sean said:

“We had an 80% increase of SQLs and we found significantly more leads.”

They were also able to increase the precision of their outreach.

“We found that some of our best deals are coming from outbound because we’re able to target more relevant companies. Thanks to Cognism, we’ve developed a way better understanding of our ICP."

The company’s founder, Jon Kalaugher, has a great analogy for the precision they’ve found with their new outbound approach.

“Inbound is like fishing. You drop a hook down and hope that something comes along, it could be a big fish or a small one. Outbound is like spearfishing. You ignore most of the fish, focusing only on the one you’re interested in.”

Sean found that their new focused outbound approach gave their sales team more confidence.

“Our salespeople are confident because now they have a better idea of who’s going to pick up the phone. We can target specific industries that are working well for us and it gives us fewer variables to worry about.”

Despite the depth of research Sean did before signing up to Cognism, he did not anticipate the effect it had on their sales strategy.

“We didn’t expect it to work as well as it did. We didn’t expect to be able to scale as fast as we did, and for it be as consistent as it has been. We had results within 2 weeks of signing up.”

Cognism Prospector helped Flowingly through a hard time. Sean said:

“Without the pipeline that we built, COVID19 would’ve hit us a lot harder. Our inbound lead generation became very inconsistent over the lockdown period. Despite this, we were still able to book a record number of meetings due to our outbound efforts.”

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Advice

We asked Sean if he had any advice for software companies.

“Don’t be afraid of outbound. Give it a go. People don’t do it because they haven’t in the past. A lot of the stuff you read online says that you need to do inbound, and people forget just how effective outbound selling can be.”

We also asked if Sean would recommend Cognism to other software companies.

“Yes. As a business we are quite sceptical, and we knew it would be a reasonable investment. It’s worked so well for us that it’s become a core part of our lead generation and sales.”

Sean is confident that Flowingly will continue to explore outbound sales.

“We had a conversation about whether to focus more on inbound or outbound. It was a no brainer. We will continue to invest in outbound.”

Find out if Cognism could work for you

Many thanks to Sean Wallace for giving us great insight into his experience with Cognism. We hope you enjoyed it!

Cognism could become a fundamental aspect of your revenue model. With access to 16 B2B data points on over 400 million business profiles, you will be able to narrow your focus and find the best people to speak to with ease.

Take the next step in building a predictable sales funnel and give spearfishing a go, Cognism-style!

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