About the Customer: Netherlands-based CM.com connects tens of thousands of companies with millions of consumers via mobile phones daily with its innovative platform.
CM.com's conversational software suite crafts intimate, meaningful connections between businesses and their consumers. Since its founding in 1999, the company has grown into a global organization. As it expanded into new markets, sales reps were each given the autonomy to create messages and workflows tailored to their region, industry verticals, and target personas.
"Our company culture is special because we're built with many separate, entrepreneurial teams that can each steer in the direction they feel is best for their customers while supporting the greater organization," says Pim Camps, Sales Operations Lead, Performance & Strategy at CM.com.
However, it became increasingly apparent to company leads that this autonomy made it difficult for the sales team to scale their efforts. Sellers were relying on manual, repetitive activities that stunted their productivity and weren't proven to drive results. Inbound and outbound conversion rates were low, leaving account executives (AEs) to battle insufficient pipeline coverage and ultimately fall behind on managing deals through to close.
CM.com knew that for sellers to close more deals, they needed to execute the right actions at each stage of the opportunity. So the company hired both Pim and Victor van Leijsen, Sales Operations Lead for Technology & Operations, to build the sales organization's operations function.
"As a company, we strive for perfection," Victor says. "We knew that having an aligned process across the entire sales organization would increase efficiency and effectiveness, getting us higher conversion rates, better-targeted campaigns, and higher-quality selection of opportunities. Our sales processes also needed to continue respecting the expertise of our regional sellers."
The chief priority for this new two-person Sales Operations team was evaluating their existing sales technology stack. They discovered that regional sellers in the United States and India were using Outreach to orchestrate their prospecting workflows. Outreach was helping these sellers be more productive, so Pim and Victor decided to bring the platform to CM.com's entire salesforce.
According to Pim, "Working with Outreach feels more like a partnership than a customer-supplier relationship." This partnership started with strong training and onboarding.
“Working with Outreach feels more like a partnership than a customer-supplier relationship [...] We’ve implemented about 10 sales tools in the past two years, and Outreach’s training and onboarding were by far the best.”
"We've implemented about 10 sales tools in the past two years, and Outreach's training and onboarding were by far the best," Pim says. "It was interactive, and the Outreach Professional Services team structured it so well. It was clear what we needed to do, what Outreach was doing, the timeline, and when we needed to prepare certain things or involve other people."
With the help from Outreach, CM.com quickly stood up workflows for creating quality pipeline. The sellers who are responsible for inbound and outbound prospecting conduct their business entirely within the platform. Outreach surfaces leads and intelligent guidance on how to engage with them. Once a lead is qualified, an Account Executive, Account Manager, or Partner Manager will use sequences to manage opportunities efficiently and effectively.
According to Pim, "One of the most important things is that Outreach takes away the administrative burden because it automatically registers activities in our CRM. That lets our sales reps spend time making their customers successful instead of draining their energy on administration."
What started as a two-person Sales Operations team has grown into a tour-de-force at CM.com. Pim and Victor now manage eight operations professionals, and their team is supporting a sales organization that has grown from 100 to almost 400 reps in just two years. Along the way, Outreach has been a cornerstone technology and business partner for CM.com.
"People perceive Outreach as really valuable for their day-to-day job," Pim says. "That's a pretty big compliment about how well our team is serving our sellers. In fact, Sales Operations has been so successful that other departments are following our lead and investing in their own operations functions."
"The Outreach platform gave us better insight into activities because activities are logged automatically," Victor says. "We have more trust in the quality of our data." Quality data means sellers can target leads with industry-specific sequences that are proven to create more opportunities and book more meetings.
“If you optimize the process with data from your reporting, learn more about what’s happening in every stage, and can coach toward best outcomes, you’re setting up dominoes. Then you bring in more leads, pop them into a sequence, and let the dominoes fall.”
"Outreach ensures we have sequences tailored for industries or audiences so leads feel like we're personally connecting with them," Pim says. The best part? Sellers can make informed decisions about when to alter sequences and other sales content. "We structured our content in Outreach so that our local sellers can customize based on their unique expertise and how they want to show up for their clients. For example, when you talk to someone from the Netherlands, you can be way more direct than when talking to someone in Japan. That tone makes a big difference."
Outreach also gives reps and sales leaders visibility into every part of the sales cycle so they can see what's working and where to improve. Leaders see which reps are booking the most meetings or have higher conversion rates and why. Then they can coach up lower-performing reps and help them embrace a "hunter" mindset that delivers more revenue.
"Ultimately it's like dominoes," Victor says. "If you optimize the process with data from your reporting, learn more about what's happening in every stage, and can coach toward best outcomes, you're setting up dominoes. Then you bring in more leads, pop them into a sequence, and let the dominoes fall."