I learned about Drift at a meeting that I go to. I’m part of a CMO forum group, a networking group, and Drift came up in that group. We were talking about software that made a difference and somebody introduced the concept of web chat. And somebody else in the group was using Drift. They were an early customer. And the thing that was so interesting to me about it was, first, the team that was bringing it to market, and secondly, the technology that had already arrived earlier this year. The advanced features and the future that we thought was ahead of the product seemed really interesting.
Specifically, Chris was interested in being able to filter out the noise that’s associated with traditional live chat. He needed something that would let his sales development reps (SDRs) focus on having conversations with just those people who were likely to buy.
What we were looking for was a solution that would allow us to meet the needs of our sales organization. Perfecto’s sales organization is very targeted in whom we try to sell to. And with web chat, I feel like the legacy products allow anybody to chat with our SDRs, and that isn’t productive for us.
Ultimately, by making sure the right leads could get routed to the right SDRs via intelligent routing, and by qualifying leads via conversations instead of forms, Chris figured he could shorten Perfecto Mobile’s sales cycle.
One of our number one initiatives is to shrink the time associated with lead in the door to closed deal. So being able to identify the problem, qualify a lead, and move that right to the outside sales rep. And have that outside sales rep have a lot of information because it wasn’t just a form, it was a conversation. So beyond qualified, we’d know exactly what they’re looking for, and then drive that out into meetings and the sales cycle. It could speed everything up and makes our leads much more valuable.
At Drift, we’re big believers in the #NoForms movement. But at the same time, we recognize that ripping out all of your website’s lead forms isn’t always a feasible option (at least not in the short-term).
That’s why a lot of our customers, including Perfecto Mobile, use Drift as a “second net.” Instead of removing forms completely, a sales & marketing team will simply add Drift to their website as a second channel for generating and qualifying leads.
Once Chris added that “second net” to the Perfecto Mobile website, the data soon began to tell a story.
We were sitting at about a 6% conversion of our web traffic, which is about the industry standard. But what we wanted to do was increase the overall conversion rate of traffic because our traffic was pretty good … Our initial results in our first quarter of using Drift saw the conversion rate associated with that pack of leads (that was seeing those little chat buttons at the bottom of the page) grow from 6% up to almost 10%. So we started to see the promise of what we were trying to do, which was to create more out of our base.
So within their first three months of using Drift, Perfecto Mobile’s conversion rate grew from 6% to 10%.
After six months of using Drift, that number would climb to 20%.
One of the factors that led to this increase, no doubt, was chat targeting. While Chris had initially assumed that chat would yield similar conversion rates as forms, he found that by narrowing the target audience and focusing on just those visitors who were likely to buy, he could drive better results.
Our leads tend to be 70% out of our target, 30% in. Now, I expected with web chat we’d see about the same thing. So people chatting and just essentially taking up the time of our SDRs when they could be working on more productive activities. And so right out of the gate, we identified with Drift that we were going to see the ability to manage that process. So we’re able to, by IP address, identify companies by their size, and only present to our SDRs chats that come from companies that we want to sell to.
Another thing Chris discovered after his team started using Drift: By letting leads “skip the form” and chat in real-time, he could reduce the time it took a lead to move through the sales funnel.
As Chris explained:
Leads that come in through chat tend to have a higher velocity. So you’re able to solve the problem or meet the needs of the request in real-time. So you think in terms of somebody coming to a website, and having a question, and filling in a contact us form. And they’ll hear back in 24 hours, or two days…that problem might not be there anymore. If they’re able to initiate a conversation, so skip the form, and have a conversation in real-time, we’re seeing that move very quickly.
Chris then gave an example of just how quickly the sales process can move when you’re selling in real-time with Drift. Here’s a summary:
As Chris noted:
It moved much more quickly than we would normally see with a web lead because it was a conversation that led to an action that led to a meeting. And that’s what we’re looking for, to shrink the time it takes to get from initial lead, to hand-off to a sales rep, to an opportunity, and finally to a closed deal. So anything we can do to shrink that time is a win for us.
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