The Seattle startup develops software designed to help sales forces manage their workflow and communications.
What: Outreach, a sales-automation startup based in Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood.
Who: Manuel Medina, founder and CEO, is a veteran of both Microsoft and Amazon.com who participated in the TechStars startup mentorship program in 2011.
The pitch: Outreach’s software is designed to help salespeople manage their workflow and automate tedious tasks such as setting reminders to follow up with potential clients. Outreach tracks the calls, emails and other ways salespeople reach out to prospects. It monitors the response and helps to evaluate which outreach methods are most effective.
Saving time: “Half of your day is updating (software) or deciding who to call,” Medina says. With Outreach software, “I know I’ll have replies to my emails, or I don’t have to work till 11 p.m.”
Funding: Outreach has 65 employees and about $11.5 million in venture-capital funding. In November, the company moved into a space in the Brooks Sports headquarters.
Changing the workday: Outreach’s software envisions the next step in technology’s reshaping of the way salespeople work. The first step, instituting software such as email or customer relationship management (CRM), largely helps people keep track of things. Step two is helping people work with those programs more efficiently, Medina said.
Betting on Salesforce: Outreach has tied its fortunes to Salesforce.com. In addition to linking its software to email programs and LinkedIn, Outreach lives as a workflow tool to draw from and update the San Francisco-based Salesforce/s fast-growing CRM software.
Branching out? Medina said it’s possible Outreach will build bridges to other CRM programs, but for now, Salesforce’s technology industry-heavy customer base gives his company room to grow. “Getting behind that train? It’s amazing,” Medina said. “They pave the road.”
The goal: “As an information worker, your day is more pleasant” if you’re not constantly toggling between LinkedIn tabs, email windows and calendar reminders, Medina said.
— Matt Day