This post is part of a series of Executive Interviews of top sales and marketing solutions company executives. We ask the same questions of every executive so readers can learn about their unique positioning and their vision for the industry.
This week I interview Adam Hollander, CEO of Fantasy Sales Team.
Nancy: What does FantasySalesTeam do? What problem/s are you solving for sales and/or marketing organizations?
Adam: FantasySalesTeam helps sales managers run more engaging and higher performing sales contests with their reps. Most traditional sales contests have three problems.
- First, they only motivate the top 20% of your team because these are the reps that usually take home the prizes. This leaves the middle 50% and bottom 30% frustrated because they never feel like they have a chance to win.
- Second, they don’t keep reps engaged throughout the duration. Reps tend to stop paying attention the moment they’ve fallen too far behind the goal or the leader. So by the end of the contest, there’s only a small handful of reps even focused on the incentive (and of course a large portion of your team no longer motivated by it at all).
- Third, they’re usually simplified to only measure results because incorporating activity and behavior metrics is an operational hassle.
Our platform focuses on helping companies motivate their entire team, longer, while making it operationally easier to run and manage their sales contests and incentives.
Nancy: How does your solution uniquely address the problem (or in what way do other solutions fall short from solving the problem)?
Adam: We’ve proven that team based competition is the best way to level the playing field and keep reps motivated. Creating a culture where reps are pushing and relying on each other is key to driving increased performance across the board. Our unique team-based game models do exactly this; allowing reps to earn individual points but also compete as part of a team. Some of our models even allow non-sales employees to build their own teams of reps, getting them invested in the success of sales.
Our games also incorporate multiple ways to win. Giving reps different paths to take to win prizes keeps them engaged longer. Even if they’ve fallen out of contention in one area – they’re usually still high enough somewhere else to stay motivated. Combined with being part of a team and having other reps relying on them to perform ensures they don’t lose interest.
Lastly, it’s incredibly easy to score your games using FantasySalesTeam. We integrate directly into major CRM platforms like Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics and can tie into absolutely any system our customers are using. You can even use FantasySalesTeam as a standalone product and upload Excel spreadsheets directly into our dashboards. This allows companies to run much more dynamic and interesting contests focused on lots of important metrics.
Nancy: What’s the most important thing that today’s business decision-makers should look for (or ask, or consider, or solve)?
Adam: How can you motivate the middle 50% of your team? Your top reps are self-motivated and don’t usually need an extra incentive to perform. Your bottom 30%, while important, may not be around long enough for you to make significant investments in their success. It’s the middle 50% that will move the needle – and that’s exactly what we focus on at FantasySalesTeam with our customers.
Nancy: What are you most excited about for the next 12 months?
Adam: We’re now starting to see widespread adoption of sales gamification, across industries and company sizes. It’s no longer a question of if this works; it’s proven. For example, we’ve recently published case studies (http://www.fantasysalesteam.com/category/case-studies) with HP and Wireless Zone that showcase incredible results they drove from using our platform. I’m excited about scaling our business now that we have a proven, award-winning product that our customers love.
Nancy: What do you think is the biggest underlying theme or trend for sellers and/or marketers in the next 12 months?
Adam: From a marketing and sales perspective, companies are getting much smarter around using digital tools and analytics to refine and optimize their process for reaching, acquiring and retaining their customers. Within sales, that requires higher levels of adoption with CRM to ensure the right information is available to operations and executives. FantasySalesTeam represents the best ‘carrot’ on the market to get sales executives to adopt and utilize CRM properly. Without logging activities and opportunities properly, points aren’t earned, and therefore we’ve seen adoption percentages rise dramatically for our clients..
Nancy: What would you challenge sellers and/or marketers to think about for the near term?
Adam: Most sales managers don’t realize their sales contests and incentives are underperforming. I know that I didn’t when I was managing a team years ago. Ask yourself if you’re really motivating your entire team – or just the top 20%. Ask yourself if you’re keeping your team engaged throughout the duration of the contest. If not, FantasySalesTeam represents a turn-key, quick win for you to drive improved results across your sales force.
Note: Last week, FantasySalesTeam announced it closed on $750,000 of additional capital, funded by ATX Seed Ventures, and the Central Texas Angel Network. This builds on $750,000 that the company raised in April 2014 from the same investors, for a total of $1.5 million to date. The company launched in June 2013 and has signed more than 100 customers, including enterprise companies such as HP, Comcast and CenturyLink as well as dozens of clients in the small and mid-sized market. To learn more about Fantasy Sales Team, watch their overview video.