In the first of two-part series, we ask four case studies how data intelligence has helped them grow their business and gained advantage over their competitors.
Before getting started, let’s meet our use cases.
The first is the UK’s leading car share provider, Liftshare. Based in Norwich, this Social Enterprise provides a car sharing platform to over 600,000 users. Liftshare also works with 700 businesses across the UK to provide the platform to their employees.
The second is Cognism, an end-to-end sales acceleration solution, which provides B2B organisations with a more efficient way to prospect. In a crowded marketing technology space, Cognism has been able to demonstrate the power of its platform, powered by a patented artificial intelligence (AI) engine, by using it to grow its own client base and increase revenue significantly since it started trading in 2016. At the heart of the solution is a game-changing approach to data that improves the depth, accuracy and timeliness of each prospect interaction. The company has helped our other three case studies take advantage of the data they possess.
Notably, since Liftshare has deployed Cognism’s platform in 2018, its sales team has drastically increased sales opportunities and leads. The platform has provided Liftshare with a different approach to data that improves the depth, accuracy and timeliness of each prospect interaction.
Show me the data: How organisations can make best use of their most precious asset
The third, Graduate Fasttrack, has been a market-leading graduate recruiter since 2003, helping thousands of graduates find their ideal job within sales and recruitment. Its clients range from small start-ups to large FTSE businesses, so there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach the organisation can take.
Our final use case is Asemblr, a smarter solution to plan and manage events, which was founded in early 2016 by its CEO, David Lovett Hume. He identified an opportunity within the industry to use technology to streamline the way in which corporate events are planned and built. Fast forward a few years and Asemblr has become an intuitive, digital platform for busy professionals to book and manage corporate events, conferences, trip incentives and team building, all in one place.
How have you used data intelligence to grow your business and gain advantage over competitors?
According to Andrew Anderson, head of Business Engagement at Liftshare:
“Liftshare has been able to utilise data to more accurately identify desired prospects with the most relevant business profiles by using data that was not only clean, but compliant with regulations such as GDPR. In addition, the AI engine’s feedback loop used within the technology has enabled us to act on changes in user profiles in a highly timely manner. In doing so, we could make sure we were not only prioritising outreach activity at the right time, but that each prospect interaction was focused and relevant to that persona, increasing the likelihood of a sale. The result is both improved conversion rates and an increase in leads.
“Our sales team closed two sales within the first month of using Cognism’s platform, and they continue to receive multiple responses to their outreach campaigns daily, spurring us on to grow the Opportunity Generation team to accommodate the increase in enquiries.
“Since deploying Cognism’s platform, our team now receives an additional 15-20 leads per month, and in particular, the email marketing campaigns have achieved a read rate of 17.2% and a reply rate of 5%. We are looking to increase the volume of campaigns run, as we continue to expand into different geographical locations.”
James Isilay, CEO at Cognism, says:
“Using our own platform, we have been able to more accurately identify desired prospects with the most relevant business profiles. In addition, we have used the AI engine to act on changes in user profiles in a highly timely manner. In doing so, we can make sure we are not only prioritising outreach activity at the right time, but that each prospect interaction is focused and relevant to that persona. The result is both improved conversion rates and reduced prospecting lead times, and ultimately more revenue.
“During our first year, despite minimal resources, Cognism achieved 30% growth in month-on-month revenue. In 2018, we saw a 600% growth in overall revenue and the platform was core to that success. In the second quarter of 2018, we achieved a 61% increase in monthly recurring revenue (MRR) with a projected doubling of the sales team in the next 12 months. In just 18 months since start-up, we have built a base of over 200 clients, including an increasing number of global enterprise organisations as well as SMBs and mid-market companies.”
Ciaran North, head of Business Development at Graduate Fasttrack, explains:
“After just nine weeks of using a strategic approach to data through Cognism’s Revenue AI platform, we had already seen a return on our investment. It was incredibly rapid in providing revenue for us as a business, which was essential for us. There were a number of benchmarks for us to measure against, but the easiest one for us to look at was the number of meetings booked; it’s always been the bottom line for our Business Development team. Since using the data we had intelligently, the number of meetings rose to 3.8 per week, which at first we thought wouldn’t last and was too good to be true. We were proved wrong very quickly.
“The increase in the number of meetings booked was not the only benefit seen, as two new clients were already signed in December, which has historically been the worst month for new business, so to sign two new clients was amazing. This has also directly affected our projected growth this year; it’s much higher than we initially thought possible.”
Mark Hulme, Business Development director at Asemblr, says:
“Our change in strategy to focus on generating qualified leads with relevant, timely and accurate data has been extremely rewarding, with a 30% increase in new customers seen in the past 6 months. We have a long sales cycle so our aim isn’t to see a quick increase in revenue but to generate qualified leads.”
*The preceding piece will focus on the challenges our case studies have faced in utilising the data at their disposal.