[008] Power of Data for your Call Center, with Eric Kider from Data Axle

Episode 8 August 02, 2021 00:45:23
[008] Power of Data for your Call Center, with Eric Kider from Data Axle
Scalable Call Center Sales
[008] Power of Data for your Call Center, with Eric Kider from Data Axle

Aug 02 2021 | 00:45:23

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Show Notes

How has the pandemic changed the perspective and the model of your business? What’s the current disposition and status of your client base?

As more and more people have worked remotely over the last 16 months, the world of business and consumer have become more connected. It’s a perfect example of how technology has enabled individuals to engage and work more effectively.

In this episode Eric Kider from Data Axle and I, talk about how he shifted in working with and helping their clients as the pandemic started. We also talked about his experiences in formulating and executing business strategies.

Learn about assessing growth segments, developing partnerships, and the important role of data and technology.


Find out if your Sales Operation in Scalable

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Connect with Jason on LinkedIn

Or go to Jason’s HUB – www.JasonCutter.com

Connect with Eric on LinkedIn

Eric‘s Bio
Responsible for the overall P&L of the Data Axle Data & Credit Solutions business. Formulated and executed the business strategy, assessment of growth segments, development of partnerships/channels and defined the go-to-market plans addressing specific client needs within the small and mid-size business credit market.

Eric’s Links

https://www.data-axle.com/what-we-do/credit-solutions/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/erickider/


Jason: [00:00:00] Hey, everybody. Welcome to another episode of the scalable call center sales podcast, as always, I am very excited that you’re here and I’m very excited to be joined by a, another special returning guest. Eric kinder from data axle, which was previously known as info USA. And so Eric. Data axle is focused on data and credit solutions for businesses.

[00:00:30] His his main goal is information services in the call center industry and spending time formulating executing business strategies, assessing growth segments, developing partnerships. And everything that goes along with go-to market plans for clients for small, mid sized businesses especially in the credit market and the business credit market.

[00:00:51] And for long time listeners, which I alluded to, if you’re familiar with it, the previous podcast, Eric was actually a guest. Now the show is called the authentic persuasion show. He was actually on episode 1 76. In season two, when the show was still called the sales experience podcast. And interestingly enough, the episode that he was on came out in early March 20, 20, and obviously a bit has changed in the world since then.

[00:01:19] So I am excited to have him on the show to talk about what’s happened in his business and what he’s seeing in the world since then, and then talk about it, especially relative to call centers. Eric, welcome to the scalable call center sales part.

[00:01:34]Eric: [00:01:34] Thank you, Jason. Great to be here.

[00:01:37] Jason: [00:01:37] So let’s get caught up.

[00:01:39] Obviously there is the pandemic and everything that happened since last March that you know, everyone’s aware with and everyone’s had to deal with in their own way businesses, families, things like that. There’s also the fact that you guys changed company name branding. So update everybody on.

[00:01:58] What’s been happening, let’s say internally and externally.

[00:02:02] Eric: [00:02:02] Yeah, no. First of all, Jason, thank you. It’s great to be here again with you on the first, second time in the sequel I’m guaranteed will be better than the earlier version or the first session, but what’s interesting as you pointed out, after we did the first segment back in March of last year, pretty much the world has changed dramatically.

[00:02:19]And what’s happened in the sense of reality is. Companies, at least that we’ve worked with both on the individual front, but also on the business front have to change the whole dimension of their view point on what is it that is important. What are their priorities? And it forced the recalibration of their overall business model in totality.

[00:02:42]Because again, if it wasn’t for the government offering the different programs like PPP or the unemployment benefits that people have been getting, and still aren’t getting up until September of this year, the world would have been in place in the U S a lot worse than, you know what we’ve gone, all the Lutheran.

[00:02:58] And people come, if you think about all the magnitude of the difficulties that still people are coming out of and trying to plan through now that behind us some degree there’s still a level of uncertainty. There is still questions. People are asking both personally and professionally on where and what they should be doing.

[00:03:15] And so we’ve modified and morphed ourselves as needed to create the right types of sets of solutions for the clients that work with. Because as Jason, there is no single answer that applies to every business, especially when you’re dealing with small and middle market kind of clients, they really are personal, kind of incense of individual needs are not the common sense.

[00:03:40]And so we’ve been tailoring a lot of capabilities to those individual clients and yes, as we changed our name back in September from info group to data access. Our CEO, Mike made it clear that we wanted to reposition ourselves to the market as a company that not only can provide solutions that cover business data, but also consumer data, but also provide end to end solutions when it comes to sales and market.

[00:04:08] All the way through to risk compliance and credit. And we also now are doing a lot more data oriented solutions where we do full suite hygiene enrichment. We add attributes. We help companies build a better fuel source in which all of their business processes are in fact powered from.

[00:04:30] Jason: [00:04:30] Yeah, and I think that’s great.

[00:04:31] And as you’re describing it, it makes a lot of sense because as info group info USA, and that, then it’s here’s the info data. And looking back on our conversation that we had that came out in March of last year, a lot of what you were sharing and talking about was business credit-based data and availability and, and that kind of thing.

[00:04:53] I know that what you also provided was the marketing and the end-to-end, it’s not just the data, but somebody wanted to have you help with email campaigns, even direct mail, whatever that looked like you had those. But I can see that with the rebranding and helping people be aware that you have so much more than you can do that.

[00:05:13] That makes sense. And so with that, what has been. Some of the challenges that you have seen in the marketplace with the services that you provide and specifically, like what I’m looking for is there’s a lot of people that provide. There is a lot of people and I’ve been on the buying side for 18 years of buying data or leads where there’s a lot of people who promise amazing stuff, and then you test it and it’s garbage and you get burned and you just don’t want to take a chance anymore.

[00:05:45] So what kind of Hills have you faced that you’re having to climb up in, in that realm? Especially on the consumer side.

[00:05:53] Eric: [00:05:53] Yeah, no, I think the Hills, as you pointed out that we’ve been faced in climbing together with our clients. Is really the first dimension of the first hill, which is what’s the current view and disposition and status of their client base business or consumer.

[00:06:13] There’s been a greater need today, more than ever to assess where how, and by what means are your clients currently engaging in, how are they transacting if they are traveling. Yeah. And the world of business and consumer has really blended together as more and more people over the last 16 months have worked remote.

[00:06:37] There is no more physical going to a brick and mortar or some physical building for most organizations. And even today, there are still a significant portion of in fact, our clients who are working remote, even though, people are vaccinated. And although companies have announced that they are not vacating a given property.

[00:06:57] More and more employees are saying to their employers. I still prefer to work from home. And in some cases, people have said but the productivity is getting impacted and all the things around social dynamic of building comradery and collaboration with teams. And I think that to some degree, that is true.

[00:07:16] But it’s a great way of how technology has enabled to fill that gap of helping people to engage, to collaborate. Look, you and I are on zoom right now. Will it be a zoom call? Whether it be Microsoft teams or Google meet there are all these different tools now that really people were aware of many, 6, 12, 18 months ago, but now these tools are becoming enablers to facilitate.

[00:07:40] Filling in that void, at least temporarily the people will still want to, and always will be social PEO and animals. If you want to call it we’ve got to connect. This is artificial, but for the time being, we were working with clients to really get that first step of know how and where your clients are operating.

[00:08:01] If they’re operating, take a step back and first calibrate that, and we’ve been doing a little. With our clients in order to first assess their data, their customer information, because what their customer information was 3, 6, 12 months ago has to be updated. It has to be changed because the way in which they would engage or transact with them is no longer what worked 12 months ago, or even before March of last year.

[00:08:27] Jason: [00:08:27] So on that note, because it’s one of the most interesting questions that happened early in this pandemic cycle when it started and everything shifted to remote. What are you seeing or what have you seen as the shift in the strategy? From the data side, as well as from the user side. So your clients who are buying or accessing the data and what they’re doing with it, what have you seen as different strategies considering the fact that consumers aren’t at work business people aren’t in an office, then the general ways that you would have tried to reach them are, mostly out the window.

[00:09:08]Eric: [00:09:08] And so what we’ve been, yeah, no, that’s a great question. So let’s put it in the context of for example a service center or a sales center. Which has now gone virtual. So you could have a sales, like we had an Omaha, we had a location that had 500 people, and then all of a sudden, overnight they went remote.

[00:09:26] So the one thing that, you know, working with clients in that element was to identify. What in, how are they currently planning to transact and do their business practices, right? Whatever that practice is, it doesn’t matter if you’re selling, services for marketing, or if you’re selling, masks or gloves for essential workers.

[00:09:46]It doesn’t that element, the core foundation was let’s talk about what systems are in place today. To enable this new working force or this workforce that’s now remote. So let’s talk about that. A lot of people, as leveraged always Microsoft teams they’ve leveraged salesforce.com or any other CRM or ERP platform.

[00:10:07] And a lot of those platforms inherently allow you to work remote. That’s not a foreign item, right? People working remote is not this new fangled thing people were doing that God 15, 20 years ago. Cause we had the technology. We’ve actually first assessed. What is the company trying to do?

[00:10:23] And then second is who are they trying to do it with? And that’s important because if they’re trying to engage with an executive or some business executive, that’s no longer working at that telephone number or address where they used to work, because they’re no longer physically in that building, but they’re working remote, but they also want to connect or somehow connect with the consumers.

[00:10:44] We actually then did the diagnostic says, okay, which is your audience that you’re going after. And then how do you want to engage with them in a respectful way? Because remember we’re all living through and have lived through this pandemic together. There was nobody who was void from it. So the tone and tenor by which how you engage, had to change dramatically, a higher level of sensitivity.

[00:11:06] We work with clients on, we leveraged and spoke with them about how you want to show flexibility, because you will be remembered by what actions you take. What it’s tough, not when times are great. And that I think is a tone and direction that we applied ourselves. Even with the flexibility we extended to our clients during the pandemic where we were saying, look, we don’t want you to cut back on data.

[00:11:29] We don’t want you to cut back on the service. Let’s not talk about how and when you’re gonna pay us, let’s talk about the value that we can create as part of the relationship we want to build with you. And as a privately held, relatively smaller company we can do that and we’ve done that for a number of our clients.

[00:11:45] And that came again directly from all of the executives at our company, not just to protect our employees, but also of course, to protect our clients. When we saw the clients, then once they’ve assessed the technology and the type of engagement. We then tailored as a third step. What does their information look like and how do they want to support their salespeople, their service sectors in enabling them to talk and engage with those individuals that are clients of theirs in ways that were not typically the same as was done in the past.

[00:12:20] And so we actually also have a offering that connects the executive record and a business record to a consumer. So we call it a B to C link. And a lot of our clients have adopted that to show how an executive who was working at ABC Inc, and their home address. We’ve connected them to make sure that as they are marketing and selling to that person, they’re being respectful to be aware of how best to engage in a sensitive manner.

[00:12:53] To at least present what offerings they could still extend to them. How can they continue to operate their business? And then finally, what is the next steps to then build the longevity for the ongoing process? Because this is not going to change for the short term. This is not like an on-off switch. That’s what people have to realize.

[00:13:12] This is a marathon we’re all running now. Even, some people have said but all the states are reopening, but that’s correct, but let’s go back to what’s also, Jason people are faced with. There’s still a significant number of people who are unemployed either by choice or not by choice.

[00:13:27]And there’s a lot of businesses out there, especially small businesses. We’re trying to still hire people to a level back to where they were pre pandemic. And now they’re having difficult to hire the right people and getting the right people on board. Cause they just don’t want to come back to the workforce.

[00:13:41] So there’s more challenges people are facing and this will not be something that’s. Come September when most of the federal unemployment programs, if they haven’t already expired or the states have canceled them, they will be canceled, come September. But this is gonna go into even the next, six to 12 months, because as you hear more and more people about talking about now, the Delta variant and all these things, this is not going away in the short term.

[00:14:03] And so we’re trying to build the longevity and the kind of direction for our clients. To maximize how and where they spend their money, but more importantly, how to enable their overall marketing and engagement practices with their clients.

[00:14:19]Jason: [00:14:19] And I think what’s interesting in my opinion and view of things is that as the pandemic was happening and people were going remote and like you said, it, everyone was affected.

[00:14:29] So everyone’s in this together. It was actually very simple, especially to be in business. Yes. You don’t want to be too push. If you’re selling to consumers or to businesses, but there’s still a need, but everyone knew okay, so we’re all going through this together. So what is this like now that things are opening up, it makes it way messy and complicated because some people are back to work.

[00:14:53] Some people aren’t, some people are in the office. Some people aren’t, some people will never go back to the office. Some people they’re doing. And so I can see how that makes that challenging. And I like what you said about that B to C link, which is, linking someone’s business info and profile to their consumer one.

[00:15:09]And hopefully. People who are accessing that, like you said, are being respectful and not being creepy and sending stuff to their house when they’re trying to do a business to business type of sale or transaction. And maybe the B the C link is the answer to this next question. But over the let’s just say since September, when you did your w data axle was formed and.

[00:15:34] Conglomerate of all these offerings came to what is the coolest or most exciting thing that’s been added to the toolbox from your perspective?

[00:15:45]Eric: [00:15:45] I think there’s two things, Jason. What I found incredibly exciting from my lens, and again, I’m a data geek, even though you don’t know.

[00:15:54]Look at the core, I love data, right? And in some cases we kept on reinforcing to clients back in September, that data is the fuel that powers your business. And my biggest tag when I told a couple of clients, cause it resonated to them. Cause a lot of the smaller middle market customers that don’t have formalized data governance structures in their business didn’t understand what it meant, but data hygiene or data cleansing or data enrichment it, they couldn’t understand it.

[00:16:25] They understood the English, but not necessarily the operationalizing of it because they said I don’t even have anybody who manages my data today. And so the benefit that I see. By what we did starting in September was really accelerate the whole data analysis that no matter whether you have 50 clients or 1 million customers, I don’t care if they’re B businesses or consumers.

[00:16:50] We’ve been taking these files from every size client and doing complimentary data analysis for them. And it’s elegant because I’ll tell you, Jason. Yeah. What’s so amazing by doing this analysis, we’re presenting back to the client in a very simple six page document, the disposition and picture of what their role looks like.

[00:17:14] And I’ll tell you it was amazing because one company we worked with. Gave us a business file and our file could consisting of consumer records and they sell golf carts, right? They sell cards for older 55 communities. And now that you’re in a state that has significant number of over 55 communities and built communities.

[00:17:33]And this person said to me, look, show me the picture of what they look like. Now. I didn’t do it back before the pen. But I want to see what they look like in September. Cause now we’re still in the thrust of this and what was amazing. And by the way, this wasn’t me, I just presented back the data. I’m not an expert in their clients.

[00:17:52] I can only tell them what data we have and the attributes we’re able to enrich his file with. But I presented back this six page analysis, Jason and the CEO came back and said, oh my God, I had a shift. I said, okay, what kind of shift? Let’s talk about the businesses first. I’d never even thought about these businesses in these states and these industries that are now having difficulties because of the pandemic that I need, their shift and pivot to target a different group of customers that are deemed essential.

[00:18:29] Jason, who are the right mind entering 20, 20, whatever even thought about industries being categorized by the U S government as essential or non-essential to a small business. My business is essential, even though you’re deeming, it is not essential. It’s essential to me because I’m paying for my bills.

[00:18:44] I’m paying, taking care of my family. I gotta eat, I gotta pay my utilities. So that company look at the business. Interesting. So they started using that data based on that analysis to try to change how they would look to build relationships with either current clients still keep them going. But also acquire new clients that were deemed essential because they knew those kinds of clients were still in business.

[00:19:08] They were still getting funding by the U S government or other entities, and they had cash to spend. So this person created a pivot in their sales and marketing efforts using that adult, the analyze we built on the consumer side, they didn’t see as much shift. And what’s interesting is that they didn’t see the shift significantly in the kind of base of clients on the consumer side, because they said.

[00:19:32] The consumers we’re working with. They’re over 55. Most of them are already retired. Most of them are not in the workforce. They already guard getting some kind of pension or 401k. They have a retirement plan. And so we don’t see the shift in that economic risk factor. And in fact, I’d rather see if I could spend more on those kinds of acquisition of those clients, because there’s still a need there, but they do have disposable income.

[00:19:53] It’s not like the same people who are in the mid twenties to lower fifties. That’s a different population, but their population consumers didn’t really change much. And that didn’t surprise him because he said, yeah, most of them are retired. And so I share that with you, Jason, and share this with your audience because.

[00:20:09] That analysis was something that we have been pumping out to our clients. And again, we’re doing as a complimentary service, right? It goes back to what I said earlier, companies and individuals, right? Cause what are companies they’re made up of individuals? They’re not company doesn’t live without people.

[00:20:25] So I’m truly a believer that people will remember you by the actions you take, not by the words you speak. And so to me, the actions we took back in September, In that kind of creating and rolling out a big base of analyzers to give companies insights into their data of their clients and what their helped tremendously in just helping to calibrate.

[00:20:48] And in some cases recalibrate what actions they take. The second thing I would tell you that really took off that actually surprised me a little bit, but maybe shouldn’t have was the adoption and leveraging of trade data. So trade data was giving our clients on the more credit and risk side, a different viewpoint of not just the financial stability of a company, which is what our credit score does.

[00:21:14] It’s giving them the probability that, of that company paying them slower or not paying them at all or having difficulties and what happened overnight. And truly, this was amazing. The amount of alerts that we were getting on, companies that were showing behavioral patterns of slowing their payments to other suppliers rose significantly.

[00:21:37] Jason. And that was interesting because I probably should’ve seen it coming. I didn’t know it was gonna happen that fast. And that’s something that in September we started to see more and more companies adopt trade data and be alert, monitoring into. Revised credit policies. And again, I, I had companies tell me I’ve changed my credit policy.

[00:22:00] Now it’s no longer just looking at the financial stability. Cash is so important to me. Now, Eric, I’ve got to look at whether this company shows behavior of paying slow to other companies or other companies that they work with as an indicator that says, I don’t know if I want to necessarily give Jason 30 days or net 45 day terms.

[00:22:20] I might actually just ask him to pay by credit card or Cod, give me cash and then I’ll, and then I’ll give you the goods. So there’s a whole shift now of more companies that I never thought before would adopt the new service that we’ve been offering for two, almost three years. Now, they’ve now really accelerated the adoption of that capability because they want to look at cashflow.

[00:22:40] Jason: [00:22:40] That makes sense. If we’re looking at things from the, let’s say, Sales leader, business owners perspective. So they have a sales team and they are always dealing with the struggle and battle over data with leads, with ensuring that there’s enough inbound or outbound, supply to help their sales team.

[00:23:03] What’s one of the things for them to think about or ask themselves that should Schrager, that they either need to do the hygiene. Shaq that you’re talking about or enhance the data they have, like, where’s that over, under where they go, maybe I do need to do something different or to, bring in some kind of tool.

[00:23:29] Eric: [00:23:29] Yeah. That’s a great question. Because, I think the I’ll tell you the, what I’ve done from my operation group. That very much answers the question you’re asking for your audience. Which is when you’re thinking. Operating a sales team or some type of service center. The first thing that I looked at, especially in the last 12 months, but this practice will continue going forward.

[00:23:50] So this is not something that’s just pandemic related. This is actually now a new way of thinking about overall client engagement. However you define client, right? We don’t care. It could be business. It could be a consumer. It’s still a client. Looking for, or you’re looking to do some type of financial transaction with right.

[00:24:08] Some type of offering. So the first net I would tell you is number one, don’t assume that telephone numbers and the information you’re using is correct, or up-to-date, it’s just, it’s not going to work that way. Outbound phone calls. Unfortunately the whole telesales function has been ripped apart because of robocalls because of spam calls, because of all the unfortunate fraud.

[00:24:34] Activity that’s going on in the world these days. No one trusts anybody who’s calling either at their home number or their office number or their cell phone numbers, even though you’re not supposed to call on cell phones. I don’t know these people who are doing these kinds of fishing and other types of unfortunately, illegal activities.

[00:24:50] They have nobody who could actually stop them from doing so. So that’s changed the whole telesales function. So they think you’ve got to understand is how does your client want to engage with. Telephone is one and that’s still a very viable off, route and channel second email. So we started looking at okay, email.

[00:25:10] When you’re sending an email to that of a client, are they sending back a response to you? Capture the response? It’s not about just being on out of office from this date to this date, most of the individuals who are in fact sending and receiving emails, their message back to you will inform you. Are they working remote?

[00:25:31] What hours are they working? What’s the best route to capture or contact them or will they return your phone call in a certain time period? Most companies are not capturing that. And we started to, I told my team start capturing any type of response. You’re getting back when sending email to now a lot more companies are using Marquetto HubSpot, net results, whatever email tool you use in your company.

[00:25:57] For marketing and overall sales support, I would tell you, make sure you just don’t leave aside those types of responses you get, or your system can get, especially when they bounce, right? Where something else. Cause those are factors that you should analyze. And we’ve been working with clients to analyze emails that do, in fact, not only get distributed and get received and delivered, but also what about those that don’t?

[00:26:21] So we work with that on that front. The third is hours of operation. We become now a society that’s it’s no longer a nine to five when you’re working. No, seriously. I, Jason, when you’re working now, remote, you have people logging in at six in the middle. Logging off at two o’clock in the afternoon, you’ve got other people that are late sleepers that want to wake up at 11 and they’re going to work till eight.

[00:26:45] O’clock. You have people. I have clients now that send me emails at 10 30 at night, local time. And I know they’re on the east coast and it’s okay, so we’re no longer a typical nine to five or eight to five kind of operating. So you need to know what your teams what’s the best time, not from your lens and not from when you want to operate, but what is the best time to connect?

[00:27:08] With your clients and ask them that question, ask them because you’ll find out quickly that they’re no longer operating in that eight to five or nine to five window. They’re now best time to call me is at seven 30 in the morning. So be flexible show that flex. So that’s where we’ve also been working with a lot of clients.

[00:27:28] In fact, offering times where even over the July 4th holiday weekend, I took two phone calls from Klein. Now you may say, why do you answer the phone? It’s very simple. They’re still working. Yes, it is independence. They, yes, it’s a federal holiday. We all celebrate. We all have wonderful fireworks and all that good stuff.

[00:27:45] But if someone’s still working, they have a question we’re no longer in that Monday to Friday window anymore. People are now working on Saturdays and unfortunately on Sundays. And that could be also a flexible model that other companies should be thinking about. Engage with your clients when they want to engage.

[00:28:03] Now, when you want to engage with them. So that hours of operation and the days of the week is a fourth dimension that we’ve been talking to clients about to capture that because you could drop thousands of emails I could even eat. I can even post, hundreds of thousands of direct mail campaigns with postcards.

[00:28:19] And we do that by the way. But if you’re sailing to the wrong address or. You’re trying to call them at times when they’re not available. Jason, you’re just wasting your time and you’re expecting a different outcome. And that’s the purest definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different outcome.

[00:28:34] You’re not going to get that different outcome. You’ve got to change the game. And so we morphed and now we’re asking overtly the question for anyone that we’re emailing or talking to live. What is the best tape time to call you? What’s the best method to reach you? Is there a time or date that doesn’t work for you?

[00:28:52] And then we’ll flex with you. And that’s what the world has become now a world of flex, because that’s where we are in a remote society. And look, it’ll be this way probably for the next year and a half to two years, if not going forward, there are some companies that may only want to work virtually because it is working.

[00:29:09] So that’s the steps we’re going through and we’re applying ourselves

[00:29:13] Jason: [00:29:13] well. And I think that, applies even without this remote. Framework as a result of the pandemic is that companies who I see as successful at scale are always empathetic to their customer and what they want, whether it’s businesses or consumers like direct to consumers, whether, they want to talk on the phone or they want an email or they want to interact via SMS or online chat.

[00:29:39] And then when do they want to do it? Some companies have the leverage where they can make their claims. Fit their schedules and the way that they function and communicate. Think of doctors, doctors have a very set schedule and a very set process. You call and you make an appointment and then you go whenever they have time in their windows of when they’re ready.

[00:30:00]You want a Sunday afternoon doctor’s appointment or dentist appointments not happening, right? Unless it’s an emergency. And so some industries do that. Most everyone. There’s that flexibility and understanding of what your customers might want, which I think is always a good reminder for the clients right?

[00:30:19] The businesses that you see with sales teams that are doing well. What are some of the things that they are doing to fix the we’ll, just call it the common issue that I’ve seen forever, which is the gap or the challenges between marketing and sales, the data. In the system and what’s being said, or the message that’s going out versus what the sales team is saying or receiving, what are you seeing that the company’s doing well or advice that you have for bridging that gap or integrating it in 2021?

[00:30:59] Yeah,

[00:30:59] Eric: [00:30:59] no, it’s a great question. I would say in 2021 the companies that are doing it, the best of engaging. Still working with and still processing, working with our clients and selling or offering their goods and services. The functions that represent finance, also known as credit. If you want to call it that.

[00:31:19] But the finance sales and marketing, the ones that have all three in a highly collaborative. Very consistent communication flow back and forth between what’s working. What’s the messaging and what’s the measurement of what’s happening. When they’re doing all three, there is significant positive business results that I’m seeing manifest quickly for those businesses.

[00:31:47] And in some cases I’ve now seen even further credit departments taking information that we’re helping provide to them. They’re giving those reports to the marketing team saying this is now the most profitable client base that we’re bringing into our portfolio. This is the demographics, firmographics, the industries, their geographies, their years in business.

[00:32:14] This is what was working from a credit perspective. Can you do more of campaigns that are targeting these types of things? And the marketing team loves it. They’re like, oh wait, hold on. Yeah. Okay. Didn’t realize the credit department could tell us these kinds of information. And then on the flip side, like a sandwich, right?

[00:32:32] The marketing’s in the middle, the salespeople are telling the marketing people here’s, what’s working when it comes to campaigns that are going out the messaging. And there’s more collaboration when the sales people. In that vertical are working with the creative team in marketing to come up with what is the right offer?

[00:32:52] What’s the right talk, track and script. And if they don’t in isolation, they’ll fail. And that’s why these tools today, people said wait, and everybody going remote, you’re going to have more difficulty staying collaborative. And you’re not going to have the time to really do real-time iteration.

[00:33:06] And I actually responded back saying, you know what, if you choose to disconnect when you’re running. You can disconnect. And it’s actually a lot easier of course, to disconnect when you’re working remote, because look, I can just close my laptop now and we’re done. Yeah. But the inverse of that is that if you show the value of collaboration and our patient, and then, really taking time to overtly actively listen and ask those open-ended questions to your peers.

[00:33:38] You will get a better outcome because now you’re forcing each other to really listen, to ask the question, to share data, don’t be emotional. Don’t like this widget. Cause I like this flavor and this is what I want. No, listen to each other’s viewpoints. And then you’re coming up with the data that presents the real answer to the question of what’s working because really at the end of the day, what sales people.

[00:34:05] They want better quality leads. They w and may look the bait, the best ratio, being an old salesperson myself for every lead I get, I want a conversion. I want a one-to-one ratio. Jason, that’s my utopia. Tell me why didn’t you remember. That’s, I want to make one call sale. I want a lot of those, inside the Glen, Gary, Glen Ross, give me the good leads.

[00:34:23] Give me the good paper. So to me, it’s the salespeople want not to waste their time. On leads that they are, they know inherently by looking at the name, looking at the size, looking at the number they know inherently, it’s not gonna be a good quality lead. The marketing people of course only want to give good quality leads to the salespeople.

[00:34:44] And at the end of the day, the credit people only want to bring on companies and consumers that are actually not going to be liabilities. There’ll be assets, they won’t be exposure. And so by having those three groups work well, when we’re engaging with the client, It’s amazing because I was on a call with the head of credit when she got the head of sales in a beverage company in Pennsylvania together.

[00:35:07] And literally the person, the sales person said to me, Eric you’re the senior vice president of data and credit solutions, data axle. What do you know about sales? And as soon as I had the conversation, it’s amazing Jason, right? Cause people’s titles. Quickly create this perception of what you know, and what you don’t know.

[00:35:23] It’s a really interesting, and it almost, I feel like I don’t want to be a title anymore. My title is just data axle. That’s my title. But I said to this head of sale, I said, look, let me show you this report that we put together using credit to help you improve your overall prospect list. After an hour, Jason, he sat back in his chair and he goes interesting.

[00:35:44] I never thought that would be our best clients and that’s. And now these are all AMB rated clients with, a real good quality credit rating. I never thought about putting credit rating and these types of industries into my prospect universe for marketing. And I said, look, don’t feel just not.

[00:36:02] I’m just sharing with you information. The game has changed for all of us, just because you’re not in marketing are not in sales based on title, based on academic, based on even educational backup. It doesn’t mean you can’t help drive better qualified leads or better converted sales. It just means you have to listen and probe more information to maximize everybody’s input because without credit, you’re not going to get the money that’s needed for marketing to drive more sales and more prospects.

[00:36:30] You will have to have all three working in harmony or else you’re not going to succeed. And I think that’s been the biggest game changer that we’ve seen companies that have adopted. Succeed and actually maximizing and navigating through this crazy time period we’re living through.

[00:36:44] Jason: [00:36:44] Makes sense. And I love that story about the credit person and the sales person.

[00:36:51]I see this a lot. I don’t necessarily enjoy this part, but where, especially people who are in charge of sales teams or salespeople themselves, is that they don’t want to necessarily listen to anyone unless they think that person has the experience they have or more and can teach them something.

[00:37:08] And not always open to somebody who might come from a different perspective, but still be able to help. So I love that. End of that story, where that person was more open to it after seeing it. And of course, that’s what I want for all sales leaders and to any leader is that they’re open to any tools that could help.

[00:37:26] And then there was two words that really stood out in what you were talking about. One was emotional talking about this division and, the silo nature and solo nature of different leaders, especially marketing versus. Where it’s the emotional response, which to me is usually an ego response where people are just trying to protect either themselves or their job security or their Fife dumb, their silo in the machine. And they think like they’re the expert and anything else is a risk to them. If it’s counter to what they believe. And so obviously anyone listening that emotional response is what you want to be careful of. But then I love the ultimate word that you used, which is collaborative, which is if everyone’s collaborating together for the sake of the company, succeeding, the employee is succeeding and the client.

[00:38:14] Success. If everyone can put those things as the priorities, instead of their own kind of departments then it’s magic. Like you’re saying we’re one department sharing with the other one to help with the marketing, which is then helping sales so they can convert and everyone just wants to convert and win.

[00:38:30]And the key is to get them to all collaborate, to win at the same game instead of two or three different games.

[00:38:37] Eric: [00:38:37] Absolutely. And I’ll tell you, I love what you said, Jason, because the power of data. Combined with the human neurons, their own neural patterns, and then tied with even new analytics allows companies to even further take what the sales team thinks.

[00:38:57]So we all think certain things about converted sales and everything else. But what interesting is that when you look at, for companies who take that of sales, that were converted by a recent marketing, right? Take that extract. Look for patterns, Cole, any, I don’t care if you call your own data scientists or anybody else.

[00:39:18]But that was it interesting because I actually said to the head of sales at that one company, I said, send me all your clients. He was white. I said, okay, I want to look at your converted sales and then send me those that didn’t convert. Let me run a quick analysis show. You are there patterns?

[00:39:37] Insights that I can help you glean that even if it’s one or two elements that you can feed back into your marketing program, you could feed back into your credit decisioning, and you might surprise yourself that by looking at the analysis, figuring out what your gut tells you, but what the analysis of closed converted deals look like.

[00:39:58] Let me model. And then we could run an analytic model and build a logistic regression, even using now we have AI and ML technology and applications to use and build your own custom score. We can do that for you. And I got to tell you, Jason’s amazing how people who were traditional in their thinking have now become broader in sense of their mindset that said, I didn’t realize this was available to me.

[00:40:24] I’d never even thought about this before. And again, I love the head of this head of credit, because she wanted me to present to the head of sales, because again, her comfort of if it was coming from her, it may not have been as well received versus coming from an independent data person like me presenting the report, she was in the audience.

[00:40:47] And so it was really him challenging me, not her. And after the call, she called me back and said, you did great. I hope I did. Okay. I just was, it was a conversation and she goes, no, I could not have done what you did. I go, why not? And she said to me, I don’t think he would have received as well. And I said I hope that changes the paradigm a little bit because you’re the one I was doing the work for.

[00:41:07] This is your data, not mine. And I just want to make sure if I was helped to deliver the message because I softened the blow cause I was the bad cop. Okay. I don’t mind being the bad cop. Good cop, bad cop, whatever role you want to play. I’m good. But I just share that with you. Cause that analytics. Also creates that ability to break through that perceived barrier or that vertical silos.

[00:41:27] You mentioned Jason, because the data only will fool you. If you want to be fooled by the data will tell you, right? The data doesn’t lie, the results don’t lie. Only you could fool it and only you could modify it. And that’s where, again, I love tying it together with the analytics picture because that insight that you can.

[00:41:47] Could make the world of difference of making your program or campaign a huge success or marginal success. It’s a again, subtle difference, but it brings that insight out and ultimately helps that company support further growth and profitable growth. It’s not just growth, it’s profitable because you’re linking in that credit and that other broader view to make sure you’re not just bring on just anybody who has a pulse, that’s not what you want.

[00:42:13] Jason: [00:42:13] Yeah. And I think that the data, the analytics and the other key there is transparency. Because if not careful, everyone will take the data and tell their own story and spin it, how they want to, maybe make their department look good or their results are good, but it’s that transparency of data.

[00:42:30] Well, Eric, I appreciate you coming on the new podcast, revisiting this a year and a half. Ish later after our last conversation, obviously a lot has changed a lot of exciting stuff and a lot of great insight and Tips and suggestions for companies, obviously, people who are listening to this, if you’ve got a sales team, if you’ve got, even if you’re doing service, whatever that looks like, and you’re using data or getting data a lot of good things to consider and think about as you’re doing your process and trying to expand and scale, obviously on the call center sales side.

[00:43:05]And I know that if people are interested in finding out more information, They can go to the website for your company, which is data-axle.com. Also if people want to reach out to you, what’s the best way to get in touch with you?

[00:43:19]Eric: [00:43:19] The best way to just, through my email. It’s [email protected].

[00:43:27] Jason: [00:43:27] Perfect. Love it. Appreciate it. Thanks again, Eric, for coming on the show and joining me and sharing all this information,

[00:43:34] Eric: [00:43:34] well think it’s always a pleasure, Jason.

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