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Gong's #1 sequence to re-engage lost champions

Struggling to move up market and attract more Enterprise Customers?

Before you start throwing money at the problem. Consider, how you can leverage previous champions once they move orgs.

Here's how Corrina Owens revolutionised Gong's ABM approach to turn old champions into new customers with a 4 step process. 

Industry and company size
  • 1500 employees
  • Software
Funnel stage
  • Meetings Booked
Playbook impact
  • Highest performing outbound sequence
12x headshot images for fix your funnel playbooks_Meg copy 11

Corrina Owens

GTM Advisor

Turning old champions into new customers
Bringing quality pipeline into the funnel
Moving up market from SMB to Enterprise

Let's jump in 👇🏻

💡 What was the problem?

Corrina was brought on to spearhead an ABM program targeting enterprise accounts for Gong in 2021. 

At the time, Gong had very little visibility in the enterprise segment, struggled to get access to the c-suite in enterprise organisations and with most of their business coming from SMB. 

Corrina started off where most people would, by digging into the data to get an insight into the state of play. 

She noticed initially that many of the SMB deals that would churn left because the champion within the organisation had got a new role in another business.

Without the champion, the relationship between Gong and the SMBs went a bit cold, and a few months later, would end their contracts. 

Corrina said:

“Our champions within SMBs were leaving at a pretty high rate, sometimes 2 champions in one business within a year. And sometimes a champion might change jobs twice in a year.”

While Corrina wasn’t brought in to fix this problem - instead to raise awareness in enterprise - it did give her an idea as to how she could tap into the enterprise market.

💡 Defining your champions

Corrina decided it would be worth tracking where these champions - the biggest fans of Gong - were going and when their roles were changing. Specifically when they’d leave to join target enterprise accounts.

Corrina said:

“When I come into a new org, I want to understand who are our best customers and why. In this instance, by understanding who our best customers were in SMB, I could try to replicate that mindshare for enterprise.”

Raving fans were identified as people who:

  • Gave high NPS score ratings
  • Were identified by the Gong team during touchpoints with sales or customer success
  • People who would volunteer to leave a positive review on G2

Corrina said:

“A lot of our champions were getting promotions and joining the c-suite and moving into larger companies in the enterprise space.”

“That helped us because they were former front line managers who knew Gong very well that were being promoted into c-suite level roles in these enterprise companies.”

This offered Corrina a chance to tap into these prior relationships, creating gateways to target accounts.

💡 The 4 steps to more enterprise deals

Corrina had alerts set up on Slack to notify relevant stakeholders, e.g. herself as the ABM leader, the sales leader, AE and the SDR, that a champion had moved roles into one of their target accounts. This also provided all involved with the sequence of events that needed to follow.

  • A congratulations email (this had no ask, it was just a congratulatory message.) 
    • This was a template email but came with instructions on how to meaningfully personalise the message, such as speaking to the former CSM to get insights on why they loved Gong.
  • This email also included a list of gifts that the champion could choose from. 
    • Interestingly, the most popular of the gift options chosen by champions was a coupon code to redeem a piece of Gong merch - for context, they could have chosen other gifts such as a bottle of champagne with two flutes. 
    • Corrina said: “It was interesting to see that something so specific to our brand was of interest to them, but I guess they’re our raving fans for a reason.”
  • A friendly Linkedin message with a voice memo.
  • A second email was a value-adding piece of content, such as ‘how to win as a VP of Sales in your first 90 days’.

Corrina said:

“The amazing thing was that the first touch got us the most conversions.”

The majority of the touchpoints created weren’t necessary as the majority of people would respond to the first email, opening up conversation.

💡 What were the results?

For one, the team got great feedback from this approach.

Corrina said:

“We had people coming back to us saying ‘what a great strategy, I’m stealing this and sending it to my team - we’re going to implement this’!”

Beyond this, this was the highest performing outbound sequence that they had at Gong during this time generating both meetings and pipeline.

Corrina adds:

“People would say ‘you’re right on the money here, let's go ahead and get Gong implemented - let's set up a time to talk.”

“This was so successful with enterprise that we rolled it out across the rest of the organisation.”

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