What’s new in ABX from 6sense?

$2 trillion. That’s how much Sales and Marketing teams waste each year, according to a recent study from Boston Consulting Group.

Revenue AI firm 6sense is helping sellers and marketers cut that waste. And they recently hosted their 2022 Breakthrough Conference, where they celebrated the past year of feature enhancements and the launch of new offerings, all aimed at helping revenue teams cut the guesswork out of pipeline generation.

Here are some key takeaways that’ll help you sharpen up your 6sense-based pipeline generation initiatives.

Proceeding with Confidence

Are you tired of hearing colleagues say “in these uncertain times?” Is your boss asking you to “do more with less?” 6sense CMO Latané Conant chided those well-worn idioms as she unveiled the conference’s theme: Proceed with Confidence. The theme was founded on 6sense’s mission of helping Sales and Marketing leaders uncover prospective buyers. 

To get conference attendees into the theme, Michelle Poler, author of Hello Fear, shared her journey of facing one fear daily for 100 days. She argued that there’s a difference between being fearless and brave. To be fearless is to be foolish, Poler says: universal fears, like the fear of heights, needles, and spiders, exist to keep us safe. However, the fear of failure isn’t so essential. Poler asked us to be brave in the face of our fears, thinking “What’s the best that can happen (instead of the worst)?”

This is a great ask of revenue leaders, many of whom I know are seeing greater uncertainty in their demand landscapes.

A Year in Revenue Technology Innovation

6sense helps reduce that uncertainty, and the platform has strengthened since last year’s Breakthrough conference. Amar Doshi, SVP of Product at 6sense, looked back at key product acquisitions and product improvements. 

Among them was 6sense’s acquisition of rev-tech platform Fortella. They integrated Fortella to strengthen the 6sene’s Pipeline Intelligence, unifying marketing and sales stage reporting. This makes it easier for marketers to identify gaps between pipeline actuals and targets. Many marketers that I advise struggle to report pipeline, owing to the silo between them and their sales peers. So, this was a meaningful improvement.

6sense also acquired Granite Media, as they expand their scope of omnichannel advertising. In last month’s product release, 6sense added a contextual advertising feature, making it so users can fine-tune their existing ad segments with more than 100 topics. So, for example, if you offer business banking services, you can serve ads to users in target accounts who are reading web content about business travel cards. (What’s old is new again, am I right? Contextual advertising?) It’s a needful addition in a marketing world where buyers are becoming more anonymous, not less. 

To that end, 6sense has also shored up its data. They integrated intent data from several partners, including G2, TrustRadius, and Bomborra. If you use 6sense and haven’t yet turned on these integrations, consider evaluating how they might impact the segments you build.

6sense also acquired Slintel, adding a massive new and growing set of firmographic, technographic, psychographic, and contact data that 6sense users can use to hone their ad segments. For instance, if you offer an HR platform that helps companies diversify their workforces, you can target accounts that match the diversity psychographic. Those companies that claim diversity as a key value in their online content, will select into the segment.

Once you’ve identified those target accounts, you can find the best contacts, using Slintel’s unique data on the contact’s decision-making power or their forecasted email deliverability.

What’s New: Conversational Email, Community, a Book, and an Updated Interface

6sense’s last acquisition brings us to the newest addition to the platfom that’s addressing an age-old challenge: The ambiguous space between Sales and Marketing execution. In her Day 2 keynote, Conant presented common cases where this gap persists:

  • After a webinar, who should follow-up? Sales or Marketing?
  • Who should nurture closed-lost opportunities?
  • Who should drive prospects to register for an event?

I’ve seen these common areas where revenue organizations “drop the ball,” in my own experience as an operator and in many of the companies that I advise. Marketing’s bulk email isn’t sufficiently personalized to drive response. Sales might not have the bandwidth or the enablement to address these needs effectively.

To help fill this gap, 6sense acquired conversational email tech Saleswhale. Now, 6sense customers can use large language model AI to produce highly-personalized and interactive outbound emails at-scale. 

Sales Whale founder Gabriel Lim joined 6sense Principal Product Evangelist Ami Arad on stage to demo how it works:

  1. First, You start with any of multiple template playbooks.
  2. Then, Specify the target persona and intent topics.
  3. 6sense’s AI then generates an email template, with swappable token areas you can personalize using data from your 6sense instance. You can also ask the AI bot to regenerate parts of the email, such as the subject line.
  4. The “conversational” part of “conversational email” comes in editing the workflow. There, you can tell the bot how to respond to the most likely replies you’ll get from your email’s recipients.

I expect conversational email to be particularly meaningful for firms with limited outbound sales staff (or none). Their Marketers can set up 6sense’s conversational email bot to fill the gap. Also, firms with Sales staff will be able to prioritize their time better, delegating more transactional emails to 6sense’s bot. 6sense customers interested in the new conversational email should get in touch with their CSM.

To help 6sense customers get the most out of new features such as conversational email, and better build their ABX programs, 6sense introduced a new customer community: RevCity. It’s a community for self-service enablement, technical assistance, and networking. It replaces 6sense’s “Dojo,” which had been home to the company’s Knowledge Base and Support.

The new community builds on those offerings, inviting votes on new product features and providing a discussion forum where frequent contributors can earn points, badges, and swag. Who doesn’t want to earn badges and swag while helping their fellow ABXers?

6sense also celebrated the second edition of the book “No forms. No spam. No Cold Calls.” It’s “6sense on 6sense” guidance, sharing the same strategies they used to achieve more than one thousand percent three-year revenue growth. Readers will learn how to uncover demand, prioritize accounts, engage buyers in those accounts, and measure it all. Conant said this latest edition answers outstanding questions from the first book. It also features a new chapter from the perspective of 6sense’s SVP of Global Sales Mark Ebert, as well as a forward from CEO Jason Zintak. You can get the book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other retailers. All proceeds go to GoodSense, the charitable arm of 6sense that supports the communities in which they operate.

Finally, for those who like eye candy, 6sense teased a sleek new design system for the software’s interface that’s coming in 2023.

That’s just a few highlights from a conference packed with “confidence-building” insights and stories of revenue team success. Insight Partner portfolio company professionals seeking additional guidance on anything I covered can contact me or my colleagues at the Marketing Center of Excellence.

Thanks to the team at 6sense for hosting an invigorating conference: Here’s to proceeding with confidence!

Jared Brickman

Jared Brickman is Senior Director of the Marketing Center of Excellence at leading software investor Insight Partners, where he advises CMOs of the firm’s 500+ portfolio companies on how to go-to-market. Learn More →

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