Ease of use. It is a no brainer for our sales teams. They go through just 10 minutes of training. It is very prescriptive and clear. There is a minimal amount of flipping to get through what they need to. Everything is just on one screen.
Integration to Salesforce.com. The level of integration today is moderate. It integrates opportunity to opportunity. As soon as a sales person converts, it flows.
They are highly responsive as a vendor. If there’s a field that we want to add, they will adapt the product for us very quickly.
The model for professional services (fee based) is very flexible. It’s as much as you need. They advocate high service level for ramping new regions, and are very flexible with feet on the ground and helping out.
Reporting integration has been a challenge. There are mismatches and different filtering on data. We are always trouble shooting the reports. We get different things in Salesforce.com to Lattice. In general reporting is not very flexible – it’s too canned.
We have always had capacity and bandwidth challenges – latency – when ramping up in new countries. Lattice have been able to flex by adding server capacity. For example, we had situations in Brazil and China where it took 45 seconds for button clicks. We had rolled out to 100s of sales people and there was mass level of complaining. I don’t think they’ll make that mistake again.
Lattice are talking about deeper integration with Marketing Automation platforms like Eloqua. The vision is however very rudimentary right now. The vision is not valuable yet.
There is a clear step function increase in the measurable output of sales in each country it rolls out in. It’s different depending on country. There is an order of a 50-70% increase in direct attributable revenue to marketing plays, i.e. the conversion rate of the identified plays is 50-70% higher. Since marketing provides a portion of sales leads, the overall lift in sales productivity is 2-15%.
We have not done a global ROI analysis – each country is looking at it. In America, ROI is probably 4-5x.
There are parallel paths from marketing to sales. Sales plays through lattice which are more outbound call plays. In these the rep often has to find the contact. We tell rep to call this account, but not necessarily a specific identified person. Most of it is to house accounts. Calls plays fall into different categories – retention, growth acquisition/Greenfield (where we have something very modest installed but less than 10% of potential). Leads are specific individuals who raise their hand and request follow-up. They go through a different path to Lattice.
I think it works best when there are a couple of factors present: 1) Where we have a relationship business, where sales does know who to call, they just need help prioritizing between accounts; 2) It works very well as you get to medium to small segment of customer business, where you have one rep that covers at least 100 accounts and up to 500. It really helps them prioritize. In strategic account territories (with very finite numbers of accounts), they don’t need as much help, though they still find the value in the 3rd party data.
It is a significant investment and there’s always budget risk. It’s definitely a high return, however if funding gets cut to the bare bones, it will not be the last thing to go. Marketing is the one investing in lattice, and there are competing investment priorities.
It’s been a huge advantage to them to be global at such an early stage of their development. They keep improving the product from level of customer interaction. They are a little overstretched but I think they’ll grow into it.
While the training is very easy, we had to do a lot of heavy lifting to really scale it. It’s been a bit of all hands on deck. We have had the marketing team walk the sales floor to get training to happen. Our challenge was having the bandwidth, however once it’s done it’s done.
It is very easy to use. Sales people really like the interface. For marketing not as easy to use due to the reporting. It’s a little bit difficult.
It’s not very set-up for marketing users who need a full on view of all sales users. It’s not like Salesforce.com where you have marketing admin access and can create dummy profiles and dummy accounts. It’s really designed for just a sales rep and their account set.
Pricing negotiation has been a little tough. Outside of contract, the overall relationship is good. There’s definitely some level of concern about the huge price variance from business unit to business unit and that wasn’t shared with us.