Tenable Generates 3x Qualified Pipeline Globally with Drift

3X
Faster Delivering SDR Qualified Leads in Past Year
30%
Improved Conversation Quality & Length in Past Year
2X
Doubled Conversion Rates in Past Year

The Challenge: Provide higher quality leads while decreasing response times to drive
more opportunities

More than 30,000 organizations around the world rely on Tenable for managing and reducing cyber risk. Based in Columbia, MD, Tenable designed their platform specifically for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) at Fortune 500 companies and other large, dynamic organizations. But as you can imagine, getting in touch with those CISOs, who – now, more than ever — have extremely demanding jobs, can be almost impossible.

Back in 2018, Tenable’s Senior Director of Global Marketing Operations and Technology, Matt Mullin, recognized that their strategy for reaching CISOs needed help. As Matt explained, “We had a heavy dependence on email marketing. But there was too much crowding with this approach. Sales folks everywhere could email the same people we were targeting in mass and in bulk.”

Tenable needed a better way to reach their busy CISOs, and their teams. And at the same time, they needed to get these hard-to-reach CISOs into the hands of Tenable’s Sales Development Reps (SDRs) faster.

To quote Matt:

Before Drift, systemic issues caused latency in getting a lead to an SDR, and then bottlenecks in getting the SDR to engage with the lead if it was the middle of the night, or a time of the workday where they couldn’t follow-up immediately in real-time. If you’re not following up with them, there’s a good chance that a person’s going to say ‘I don’t even remember filling out that form or I don’t even remember going to
your website.’”
— Matt Mullin, Senior Director of Global Marketing Operations and Technology at Tenable

As if this wasn’t enough, Matt and his team weren’t driving enough marketing qualified leads (MQLs) to deliver to their SDRs. As Matt explained, “We were just focused on generating more leads year over year. It really wasn’t about quality. It was like this old antiquated way of taking a look at the overall funnel and pipeline.”

Matt recalls a conversation he once had with his sales officer, who told him: “Year over year, you’re going to have to generate 50% more leads in order to keep up with demand.” Matt knew he couldn’t keep up with that pace with their existing strategy. Something had to change.

“I knew I needed to create more quality, more consistent engagement, and more efficiency within the pipeline from a followup standpoint.” When Tenable brought on a new VP of Marketing, Matt shared the idea of using the Drift platform to deliver more high quality MQLs that the SDR team could turn into closed business, faster. He got the greenlight, and got to work on making the changes Tenable needed to close more CISOs.

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The Solution: Hey SDR Team, Drift Is Going to Put Money in Your Pockets

“Look, what if we helped your team become more visible on the website? Would that be of interest to you?”

This is how Matt got Tenable’s SDR leader onboard with getting his “A-team” SDRs using Drift Chat. He had another approach for the SDRs themselves. Matt saw the implementation of the Drift platform as a way to reset on Tenable’s Sales-Marketing alignment.

Matt told the SDR team, “Look, this is a thing that’s going to positively affect you. This is going to create money in your pockets if it’s done the right way. You’re going to get 10 times more people who actually want to talk to you, instead of you just doing the same song and dance of picking up the phone and getting a bunch of no’s or doing your standard outreach via email and never getting any response whatsoever.”

Matt’s pitch worked, and his promise of better engagement was right.

Really, you could pick any metric that you wanted, we were able to see some positive impact. It’s offsetting our previous form fill process, and now through Drift, people are getting answers right away. Drift has been able to handle a ton of traffic. As a result, we’ve now launched it globally. We have SDR coverage across the board.”
— Matt Mullin, Senior Director of Global Marketing Operations and Technology at Tenable

“We had the most senior SDRs using Drift, and they knocked it out of the park. We instantly saw our conversion rates go up. Drift became one of our highest converting programs. Really, you could pick any metric that you wanted and there was positive movement.”

With SDRs engaging immediately with interested people on the Tenable website through Drift Chat, Matt saw their median response time drop to below 60 seconds. This was an improvement, but Matt knew there was more opportunity to optimize by leveraging Drift Automation.

We have significant month-over-month traffic on our website. I thought to myself, we’re going to be able to generate a significant amount of increased revenue if we could convert just 10% more.”
— Matt Mullin, Senior Director of Global Marketing Operations and Technology at Tenable

This was the next lever in Matt’s strategy. Drift Automation was deployed to supercharge the already improved SDR chat strategy, as a way to capture any traffic the SDRs weren’t able to get to.

“Even when our SDRs were sleeping in their beds at night, we were able to still take in meeting requests. We’re still able to do a number of different things with the bot experience that we normally wouldn’t have been able to do. And we certainly wouldn’t have been able to do it through our standard chat function which was just basic office hours, and too much traffic for any one SDR to be able to handle on their own.”

The Result: Every Marketing Metric Positively Impacted

The analogy Matt uses for the impact of Drift is a familiar one to anyone in marketing and sales, “If you’re at a tradeshow and 3,000 people walked by your booth, but you only got to speak to 10, wouldn’t you like to be able to speak to 10 times that, or 30 times that? That’s what Drift has allowed us to do.” Matt shares, “We saw results quickly. All of a sudden, the SDRs were telling me, we can’t live without this thing.’”

Matt summarizes the value of Drift by sharing, “Really, you could pick any metric that you wanted, we were able to see some positive impact. It’s offsetting our previous form fill process, and now through Drift, people are getting answers right away. Drift has been able to handle a ton of traffic. As a result, we’ve now launched it globally. We have SDR coverage across the board.”

Through the Drift platform, Matt has transformed Tenable’s lead generation and SDR engagement strategy, and as a result, is engaging with CISO buyers, on their terms. And for Matt, Tenable’s journey to delivering better leads to SDRs faster has also been a journey in modernizing their approach to marketing:

“No matter how many times somebody fills out your forms, goes to a webinar or does all of this other stuff, it becomes a black hole on the backside. If you’re not able to talk to them immediately, then there’s a good chance you’re never going to talk to them. We are having so many more conversations in an environment that’s becoming harder and harder to reach people. When people are raising their hands, we’re actually there to listen, something we couldn’t do prior to Drift.”

By using Drift Automation, Matt has helped make sure these conversations happen with lightning speed, to help Tenable’s value become obvious – even to the busiest CISO.

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