Say Goodbye to Tedious Spreadsheet Work with ReadyTalk for Salesforce

In a previous life, I was the director of marketing at a small IT analyst firm in Boulder, CO. A large percentage of our leads came from webinars that highlighted our research studies and positioned our analysts as thought leaders. We also hosted dozens of webinars each year to help our technology vendor clients meet their own lead generation goals. On average, my small team of three was running two webinars a week in addition to handling all of the other marketing activities for the firm (PPC campaigns, email newsletters, PR, website, trade shows, partner marketing, report production, etc., etc., etc.).

As I look back, one of the things we dreaded most was wrapping up after each webinar – particularly the time-consuming task of getting registration and attendance data out of our webinar platform and into our CRM system. This painful process involved waiting for our webinar vendor to finalize the attendance report, downloading it as a .csv file, manually de-dupping the data and then uploading the clean data into our CRM. Depending on the size of the event, this work could take 2-3 hours – both numbing our minds and delaying time-sensitive sales follow-up. What a headache!

These memories were fresh in my mind when I joined the ReadyTalk product marketing team and learned that my first assignment was to define an integration between ReadyTalk and salesforce.com. Now, two years (and countless customer conversations) later, I’m excited to be heading to Dreamforce to launch ReadyTalk for Salesforce.

Designed to help marketers and trainers skip the tedious spreadsheet work, ReadyTalk for Salesforce streamlines once-manual processes by automatically capturing registration and attendance data in salesforce.com. The application even makes it easy to create new Lead records for registrants and attendees not found in salesforce.com.



As an added benefit, ReadyTalk for Salesforce increases access to important webinar and training programs by allowing sales and others in the organization to:

  • See a summary of which sessions their prospects and customers are involved
  • Quickly send webinar or training invitations right from the Lead or Contact record


So far, we’ve had great feedback on the application from our early access testers.. If you want to see it in action for yourself, register for an upcoming live demo or come see us at Dreamforce next week (Booth #1021). Ready to get started? Install the free ReadyTalk for Salesforce application from the AppExchange now.

 

Here’s to marketers and trainers spending their time doing what they do best instead of manually schlepping data back and forth between systems that can’t talk to one another!

 

As Director of Product Marketing, Anita is focused on talking to customers about their needs and translating these into priorities for the ReadyTalk product roadmap. Before joining ReadyTalk, she gained first-hand experience with the challenges of running a webinar program while serving as director of marketing at an IT analyst firm. When she’s not thinking about conferencing, she likes to do yoga and spend time with her dogs.

 

ReadyTalk Recruiting New Partners at Channel Partner Expo in Chicago

ReadyTalk is always showing our customers new ways to use web conferencing services. Whether you are trying out teleworking, collaborating with colleagues worldwide, or hosting a lead generation webinar series, ReadyTalk assists you with your business every day. Now ReadyTalk expands their reach with a new Partners Program.

Partners come in all shapes and sizes so we chose to develop a program that offers flexibility and suits a variety of business models. Our recruitment push continues for resellers at the upcoming Channel Partners Conference & Expo in Chicago, August 24-26. If you’re interested in adding audio and web conferencing and web events to your product offering – come by booth 1236 and talk to Betsy or Dwight about how ReadyTalk can help increase revenues from your existing customer base and help you gain new customers with these services. You’ll also want to hear about our new reseller incentive program where you can earn an additional 10% commission for the first six months. Our programs offer a full complement of sales and marketing resources and out of this world customer support. Can’t make Chicago? Check us out at ReadyTalk.com/partners.

 

Tracy focuses on channel and partner marketing at ReadyTalk, building out marketing programs to recruit partners and reinforce engagement with them. When she’s not coming up with marketing plans she likes to compete in canine freestyle Frisbee and ride her Ninja motorcycle.

ReadyTalk’s Anthony Salas’ Webinar on Engaging the Invisible Audience

For many people public speaking is very intimidating. You would think that speaking to an invisible audience on a webinar would be much more approachable; I’m here to tell you it’s not. Right before going on a live event last month I found my mouth dry, my palms sweaty and my heart racing and I was sitting in an empty conference room. Does this happen to you?

I can’t think of anything harder than speaking to an audience I can’t get feedback from. Sure, there’s a chat stream, but you’re so busy delivering content, you can’t respond to that, so your behind the scene team does. Need more ideas on curbing this nightmare?

Next Tuesday, ReadyTalk is sponsoring an AMA webinar, Webinar Best Practices: Engaging the Invisible Audience. Speakers Anthony Salas and Jamie Wallace are going to review actionable tips for engaging an audience you can’t see. Register for this event now.

 

About the Speakers:

Anthony Salas

As an event manager, Anthony works with clients on all aspects of their audio and web conferencing needs. Prior to working at ReadyTalk, he was a ReadyTalk customer, so he brings a great understanding of developing and running webinar programs. He enjoys spending time with his family and two dogs, watching movies, reading and exploring Denver’s top restaurants.

Jamie Wallace

As the founder of Suddenly Marketing Jamie, helps brands build profitable customer relationships through content marketing. From website copy and e-books to blog posts, social content, and webinars, she helps her clients reach more prospects, establish expertise, create conversations, and inspire customer loyalty. She believes in marketing that is clear, focused, and human. She believes in working relationships that are open, collaborative, and fun.

Top 10 Most Annoying Things to Hear on a Conference Call

 

We’ve all been on a conference call with distracting background noises and colleagues who forget to use the mute option. This week, we polled our Twitter Followers and Facebook Fans to see what the most annoying things to hear on a conference call:

10. Someone eating
9. People typing (and clearly not paying attention)
8. ECHO…Echo…echo…
7. Wind noises / Calling from outdoors
6. Someone taking a call on other line and hearing their hold music
5. Heavy breathing
4. Food being unwrapped right next to speaker
3. Crying babies / Children screaming
2.  Barking dogs
1. A participant talking to another person in the room (but not on the call)


As a chairperson, you can avoid most of issues by muting noisy participants (learn more about Active Speaker) but you may also want to try using ReadyTalk’s integrated audio controls to manage the call; it gives the chairperson more flexibility. Encourage participants to mute/unmute their lines as needed(*6 on the audio keypad).

 

What else annoys you when you’re on an audio or web conference?

 

As the marketing communications and PR manager, Bo gets to wear many hats (but her favorite is a tiara). When she isn't tackling branding, messaging, social media and collateral, she enjoys skiing with her husband, running with her dog and watching Formula One. You can find her on Twitter @bo_knows_.

 

 

 

Summer of Scrum

Every year at ReadyTalk, we bring on a few interns for the summer to be a part of engineering. This is typically a couple software engineering interns and a QA engineer intern, and we've generally had them focus on individual projects or even help  with ancillary work that will benefit our engineering team in the long run. This year, we decided to try something new. I wrote in the past about our new intern efforts and I wanted to follow-up and reflect on how things went.

Intern team at work

We came into summer thinking, "Wouldn't it be awesome if we had enough interns to form a scrum team and really give them a taste of what it will be like as a new engineer joining an agile development team?" so we did exactly that. We were fortunate enough to have a great selection of interns to interview and came away from that process with 5 individuals that we wanted to bring on for the summer. We chose individuals with varying CS interests and from all the major Colorado universities. One was a grad student, one had just finished his freshman year, and the rest fell somewhere in between in terms of school experience.

 

From the first week  through their final all company demo, these interns exceeded expectations. They were given a product idea, some foundation code to build on, a couple of very involved product owners, a dedicated scrum master, a mentor team to provide technical guidance and a lot of freedom. And what they delivered was absolutely amazing.

Within the first week, they were acting like a team. It probably helped that they were surrounded by other scrum teams who were leading by example, but these individuals really grasped onto the idea of scrum and agile very quickly and ran with it. They understood the basic principles of agile and scrum after we trained them on it, and they asked lots of questions along the way.

Last week, the intern team demo'd to the entire company. The feedback from everyone was amazing and the potential of a team of talented and intelligent individuals given the right tools and the proper trust was demonstrated. This was proof of the saying that given enough trust, a team of individuals can reach their full capacity. This was definitely a learning experience for us as well, and the interns gave us some great feedback that will help us shape this program into something even better next year. So my question is this…how have you structured your intern program and has it been successful for both the company and the interns?

Jason Collins (aka JC) is the VP of Engineering at ReadyTalk and the self-appointed Chief Happiness Officer. He’s been either writing code or managing engineers for nearly 15 years and has a passion for technology and agile development practices. The happiness of the engineering team is his top priority and he can usually be found wearing a ReadyTalk cape and the infamous “idea helmet” around the office to help keep people entertained. When he’s not hanging out with his work family, he’s at home with his wife and four boys doing all sorts of geeky things, like playing video games and watching campy Sci-Fi and Action flicks.