THE SALES DEVELOPMENT PODCAST

The Sales Development Podcast Episode 218 Eldad Postan-Koren

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This episode is worth staying up late to listen to.

What is the bottom line? Time is valuable. For everyone you know, that you cannot get your time back. So, how can your entire sales-team not lose a day-a-week to THIS ONE task? Think about this. You want to stop it, right? Sadly, this loss has likely been happening every week to every team-member, in your entire company thru no-fault of their own.

Yes, every week across your entire company.

Is the busywork of sales, killing your so salespeople’s days? Paper-work feels like a flush in our fast-paced environment. We need to focus on selling. What is the solution? What is the key to capturing meeting notes & customer data in real-time?

We know the work of NGOs, and startups, the energy doesn’t stop. This episode dives in with Eldad Postan-Koren CEO of WIN.AI. He notice a problem. He also wants to share the solution to save your team’s time.

“How can we create alignment between discovery, communication, and alignment of teams & clients?”

“How do we align CRMs, communications, Data capture for executives & leaders, and follow up and closing?”

Remove the manual tedious work that can add a day-a-week EACH week for your TEAM!

Solving problems. Using great tools. Using new ideas. Use the world’s first decentralized, AI-driven marketplace providing real-time solutions to retailers, manufacturers and consumers. Don’t lose. Add to your game with more quality follow-ups to increase your win rate.

Leave a rating if you enjoy this episode and tell a friend to listen!

 

 

Transcript

David Dulany: Hello, hello, everybody! Welcome to another edition of the Sales Development Podcast. I am honored and blessed to have a guest from overseas. It’s the middle of the night right now and this guy is so hardcore, he is joining me. Eldad Postan-Koren, Co-founder and CEO of Winn.ai, how are you doing today, sir?

Eldad Postan-Koren: All good. Hardcore is my middle name.

David Dulany: OK. [Laughs] Yeah, dude. I know. I mean you – I mean I would say hardcore is a nice way to say it. You’ve had a lot of success so far and now you’re building Winn.ai. I want to hear more about it. How did you start the company and what are you working on?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Amazing. So briefly about myself, so I came to the world of sales 5 years ago. Before that, I came from a very different background. I was a Naval Officer for 7 years. Imagine being on a battleship for such a long time. And then 7 years in the work of social entrepreneurship so I founded NGOs. Once again, very different from doing sales.

And 5 years ago, I joined this very startup, in the world of diabetes, where I became the first salesperson. I fell in love with this profession. I love the energy, the pace, the closing deals, the combination between EQ and IQ, everything but one thing, which is filling out the CRM. Horrible, tedious, boring. I think that that’s a good description of filling out the CRM.

And then one year later, I became the head of sales of the company. I discovered how difficult it is to create alignment between the different team members, FDRs, account executives, whether it’s about how do they qualify leads, how do they do discovery, how is the messaging of the company, and so on. So I went and just asked smart people what should I do? They all told me, “Write a playbook. Write a playbook. Write a playbook.” So I wrote the playbook. And then after I wrote the playbook, nobody use the playbook.

And then that’s basically was my experience in sales and my personal experience in sales and those are the two motivations to build Winn.ai. The first one is how to help people to fill out the CRM and remove this manual work from their day-to-day life, which takes between 20 to 25% of their time, which is one day a week. And for sales leader, how to increase the adaption rate of the playbook, and this is what Winn.ai all about.

David Dulany: OK. So you came in, you saw this huge problem and now, you’re trying to solve it.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yes, indeed.

David Dulany: OK. Got it. So they’re saving one day per week. What is taking so long and why is it taking so long to fill out a CRM?

Eldad Postan-Koren: So, you need to fill out the fields. You need to make sure that everything is updated. When you have 5, 6 closes per day and you need to update it because your VP of Sales wants it to be updated or Sales Ops are pushing you to fill out this and it takes time. It takes time. You go, you have meetings, back to back meetings and then you forget what happened and then you go back to recording and that’s the day-to-day life of salespeople. And it affects forecasting. It affects the quality of the follow-up that you can you do with your prospects. And the bottom line, that it affects the win rate. So this is – and every salesperson knows that filling out the CRM is like that and the number one thing that people don’t like.

David Dulany: Yeah.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Part of life.

David Dulany: It sucks.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah, it sucks.

David Dulany: So how are you thinking of the solution then? How does Winn.ai help with that?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah. So basically, we are a real-time assistant, a real-time AI assistant for salespeople. Imagine, it’s like having Alexa trained to help you to win more. And the idea is we are a Zoom app for now. It’s an application that’s found on top of Zoom. Once we noticed these couple of things first to put the right agenda for the right call on the right side of the screen so we have a play builder and the team lead or the VP of Sales can adjust it accordingly to the need, if it’s a discovery call, a negotiation call, closing call, and whatever the call is. And we have different sales methodology templates.

Second, in real-time, we can tell you, “Hey, you cover that from the agenda. Hey, you cover that, you cover that, you cover that, you cover that. You haven’t covered this and that and that.” And you have until the last minute, which really helps to create the alignment between the different team members.

Third, you need a conversation itself. [0:05:12] [Indiscernible] discovery, the prospect-mention things that you want to write down. So what we noticed, it captured the right piece of information and connect it with the right talking point with the right field in CRM that was defined in the onboarding part of their platform.

And the last thing because we have integration for both Salesforce and HubSpot when the conversation is done, everything is pushed to the CRM when the conversation is done. So the overall idea like 4 minutes after the call is done, you have flavor coverage, notes taken, and fields in the CRM updated. So that’s a whole new way of thinking about your day-to-day job as a salesperson.

David Dulany: Got it. And so, the second feature that you said is the playbook. Not that many people – so you would spend all this time creating this awesome sales playbook and then it would just sit there collecting dust basically or somewhere in the computer like nobody would use it. And then you mentioned – so everything is inside sales now so you would bring out your Zoom as though you were doing a Zoom call and then the playbook would also be popped out and guiding you along with the sales call, right?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yup. True. So it’s a real-time guidance.

David Dulany: So you have the call and then the key information that you are trying to capture would then be ported back to the CRM.

Eldad Postan-Koren: True. One hundred percent true.

David Dulany: Got it. So how much work is involved in making the playbook at the beginning? The sales leaders, they have to make it first, right?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah, it’s a good question. And in order to make it the easiest as it can be, so we built the different templates based on the different sales methodologies. So for example, if you are using the [0:07:09] [Indiscernible] in selling challenger based on the different sales perceptions. So we have already templates for those kinds of calls and you just need to customize it accordingly to your needs.

And what we saw by the way in I don’t know, probably it would not be surprise for you, David, but there’s no – of course one company is very different from another but by the end of the day, every salesperson is trying to do the very similar thing. You are looking for the needs of the customer, you try to understand them as much as you can during your conversation, and you need to understand how to tailor it to the value proposition of the company you are selling the product.

And basically, I wouldn’t say like it’s 90% similar but there’s a high level of similarity between one company to another in many cases.

David Dulany: And so, they can sit down. There are templates or frameworks in Winn.ai that they can use to create their initial playbook based on if they are using some of the sales methodologies.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah. And I think one step further, I think that in contrary to have a book or a file of I don’t know, 40 pages on your computer, I think creating a very actionable playbook that you can measure, that you can adapt, you can customize according from one day to another, that’s much more powerful.

David Dulany: And how would you – how do you measure something like that? So is that something that you would do with Winn.ai to measure the success of the usage of the playbook?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah. And I’m going to tell you a secret. This is the reason why we call ourselves Winn.ai, because we truly believe that a high-level adaption rate of the playbook will result in better win rate.

Now, the way we measure it because we know how to trick it based on the conversation itself so we can tell the sales leader, “Hey, listen. David is adhering for 100% with the playbook that you wanted them to be. And now, connect it with the results of David, now he is like the number one seller in the company and he is 100% adherent.” So it means you have a great playbook.

But let’s take a different example. He is number one seller but only 40% adherent. So it means that you don’t have a problem with David. You have a problem with the playbook.

Now, this is the kind of data that you don’t know today because you are not measuring it because you are not defining it. And this is part of like the secret sauce of what we do.

David Dulany: OK. All right. Well, I don’t know how many people are listening to this so hopefully, we can keep that secret for now between me and you.

Eldad Postan-Koren: It’s actually you and me, David.

David Dulany: Yeah.

Eldad Postan-Koren: It’s late in the evening of Thursday. All good.

David Dulany: This will just be broadcast across the universe. But no, it’s interesting though because I always think of like in my past, the best salespeople, I almost said salesmen, God! That’s outdated. The best salespeople are like a lone wolf. It’s hard to replicate what they are doing. So I could see a great salesperson would be at a 100% of quota but they are only using 50% of the playbook sometimes. So it feels like the value is trying to increase the effectiveness of the playbook and being able to scale the sales team. So it’s not just all relying on one amazing salesperson.

Eldad Postan-Koren: One hundred percent. I think that the trend that we see now that sells, we have aspects of art but we have aspects of science. And in order to do science, you need to define and you need to measure. And the odds of sales is all about the EQ. It’s all about creating the connection, creating trust. This is art without a doubt. But the art part which are science, let’s measure them and improve.

David Dulany: Yeah. And this is very – it’s relevant to today because we do almost all of our calls on Zoom. Do you feel like it’s harder to sell over Zoom than if you are just in real life with the person like sitting across the table from someone?

Eldad Postan-Koren: It depends. So I used to sell to hospitals in the US. By the way, don’t do it. Horrible thing. Horrible thing.

David Dulany: Are you OK?

Eldad Postan-Koren: PTSD. So – no. And I’m saying it’s horrible because you have big problem with the business side of it but it’s horrible because it takes a lot of time. It takes – it took me two and a half years to get into Boston Children Hospital and it’s a great hospital, number one for endocrinologists. But it takes lots of time.

And when you are working with someone, let’s say today, we starting the sales cycle. And we know that it will take us two years. The effort of creating relationship is heavy lift here. It’s not all about just qualification and things like that. So relationship is much more important than the rest of it. And for that, face to face meeting are crucial I think. And building – going out to drink beer together or eat good steak together, that’s crucial for such a [0:13:18] [Indiscernible].

But I think that one of the things that COVID brought us is a much more efficient or potentially much more efficient sales process. And people got used to buy things where there are people from e-commerce but also buy in such platform much more easily and we do not expect today to sit with for one hour with a salesperson. So 20 minutes demo, straight to the point, 2 minutes ice breaker in the beginning and that’s it, to the point.

And I think we see it more and more and more and more and more and it’s not by chance that PLG became like huge during the last three, two years because it comes with a reason that all PLG or PLS, product-led sales, comes with a reason, people want to buy faster, want more simple sales cycle, more simple sale process. And I think that’s the trend and it’s going to increase.

David Dulany: Yeah. I think so too. And do you find that when you take a sales call, for example, right now on Zoom that it’s mostly a one-way conversation? And so, the salesperson just – they don’t really ask many questions or they are not trying to dig out any real information. They just want to get on, show you the product and get off and get a decision made. That seems to be the trend that I see now that we’ve gone to the Zoom almost exclusively.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah. I think – and I understand what you’re saying because it’s really hard to build the soft – the small talk part. It looks artificial when you do it on Zoom. But when I sit with you and you’re going to tell me a little bit about your family and I’m going to tell you a little about my 2 years old twins so it’s much more natural.

But that’s one aspect. But I think that the other aspect of asking the right question and they will interested in the needs of the customer, I think that good salespeople do it and they do it on Zoom. They do it on face to face. So I think that the best practice of asking questions and asking follow-up questions and being intrigued by the customer used case, I think that’s still a solid best practice.

David Dulany: Yeah. And it seems like all the customers have business problems that they are trying to solve. They probably have two or three main business problems that are top of mind they are attempting to solve, otherwise, they wouldn’t talk to you. They think that there are some reasons that you can help them solve a problem. And I think that if the salespeople have potentially like a playbook that has a few questions to try to dig out what are the problems that they are having and how important are those problems versus just, “OK, I’m going to show you what we do and talk for like 15 minutes about my software.”

I think that the salespeople lose the audience kind of because the prospect or the customer is thinking, “How can this guy help me? Can they help me or not?” But first, you need to know what the problem is, right?

Eldad Postan-Koren: For sure. And we live in a generation which we have a very limited attention. I would say 20 seconds, 30 seconds, 1 minute. In the beginning, we spoke about if people hear something interesting for the first 1 minute, or something like that, we don’t have time. We live in the world of social media. We live in the world of short tweets so everything needs to in a good fit.

So when I’m on a conversation with you and I’m not pitching and I’m asking you questions, the only way to keep you in the loop, keep you in the conversation or keep you intrigued, so once again, that’s having a good conversation and asking questions and not pitching, still solid and really fit to the challenge of attention that we live today with all social media and so much distractions in our life.

David Dulany: Yeah. It’s almost like – you’re exactly right. It’s like TikTok. TikTok has become so popular because it collapses and even I as an old guy, I like TikTok. It collapses your attention span into like 3 seconds. I don’t know how long it is. But it’s fascinating. And it’s almost like the new sales process should be OK, I want this to be the most valuable use of your time. So you can get 99% of the information that’s out there yourself. You can even buy the product like product-led growth. You can buy it yourself.

So what am I – what good am I as a salesperson? It’s to find out what your problem is and prioritize it and see if I can help you either with this product that I have or my friend or a connection or some way to help you out. Otherwise, you can just watch a demo on a video, right? What do you need me for? You know what I mean?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yeah. Yeah, of course. And there’s a very interesting research showing that Millennials don’t want to speak with salespeople.

David Dulany: Yeah.

Eldad Postan-Koren: And we have the stigma about salespeople which are very pushy. And I think that also changed a little bit. So I see more smart people and intelligent people and curious people getting into sales and not trying to push, push, push, push only down the pipeline. You want real people to create connection and you want real people to understand with high emotion quality not only when willing to close the deal. And you see this trend going very strong now like more and more people are very different from the old version of salespeople as we saw it in the movies.

David Dulany: Yeah, that’s true. And pushy – you still need to be a little bit pushy as a salesperson in a couple of ways. And it’s almost like we have swung too far to like being nice and not wanting to hurt anybody’s feelings. But going outbound and talking to strangers, you do have to be pushy a little bit because a lot – 99% of the people probably don’t want to talk to you so you got to have that.

And then following up …

Eldad Postan-Koren: You need to have grit. Grit. Grit. Grit.

David Dulany: Yeah. You need to have grit. Yeah. Yeah, because if you are just waiting for someone to give you a lead or to wait for the marketing team to do your job for you, you’re going to be starving to death.

And then following up, I mean the best salespeople follow up relentlessly over the course of months and years. They are just continuously following up. And you got to push a little bit because people are so busy, they forget about you 5 minutes after you leave. You know what I mean?

Eldad Postan-Koren: OCD is a great advantage for salespeople.

David Dulany: Yeah, it is and for entrepreneurs. So I want to ask you your own entrepreneurial journey because you were in the completely different world and now you are starting this company. So I know that it’s a completely different topic but what have you learned so far and what recommendations would you have for people that want to start the next unicorn?

Eldad Postan-Koren: Yes. So it’s funny that – because it’s related to the previous part of the conversation. I think that the best position for entrepreneurs before being an entrepreneur is doing sales because raising funds and getting the right people to work for you, getting customers, it’s all about sales. It’s all about sales. So if you have the opportunity to go and do sales, proper sales, before being an entrepreneur, I think that’s 100% will serve your entrepreneurial journey. So that’s first.

And I that the two main things that I learned along the way is first, to be all in. And I think that I quit my job one year ago, one year and a half, and I was still in the phase of ideation and there were so much unknowns, endless, endless parts which were unknowns. And in some point, you need to have the leap of faith and to say, “This is the direction and I’m going to try this.”

You would not get the 100% risk-free and this is the answer and this is what you need to do. And this is part of being an entrepreneur. And by the way, this is part of the reason why it’s hard. Otherwise, everyone will do it. And it’s really hard and it’s really stressful and it’s really facing with yourself, your fears and your self-perception. And I think that’s a really tough journey.

In order to survive and this is the last tip that I would say that in order to survive this crazy ride, I think you must have support from home. And the fact that my wife and the decision to go out to be an entrepreneur and to have no salary for one year almost was a decision of my wife and myself together. And in some point along the way, when I got almost broken, she told me, “Hey, Eldad, we made the decision together and you need to keep pushing, keep going, keep going, keep going.” And the fact that I had a very, very strong and supportive family and partner, this is
100% one of the main reasons why we got so far.

David Dulany: Yeah. Oh, my gosh! Amen. And it’s amazing that …

Eldad Postan-Koren: And by the way, she is heart surgeon so she is busy as well.

David Dulany: Oh, geez. OK. Well, I know that there are so many ups and downs on the daily basis so to have that support and not have to feel all alone because it is a lonely journey and it’s a rollercoaster I would say.

Eldad Postan-Koren: On hourly basis, not on daily basis, from one hour to another.

David Dulany: Yeah. But it is good advice and anyone listening, if you are in sales and you’re thinking about all of those skills that you learned and the things, the very things that we are talking about right now are so applicable not only to sales and marketing and the go to market side of working in a company but starting your own thing. It’s great to have those skills.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Totally agree.

David Dulany: Yup. And so, if they want to check out Winn.ai and see how they can integrate that into their sales process, is it released? Are you looking for beta customers? How does it work?

Eldad Postan-Koren: So it’s yet in the early access. So we have beta users. We don’t give it to everyone. But feel free to approach us on Winn.ai, W-I-N-N.ai. And go ahead. Sorry. It’s late here in Tel Aviv.

David Dulany: You’re doing really well though. [Laughs]

Eldad Postan-Koren: I’m doing my best. I’m doing my best.

David Dulany: When you said it’s the middle of the night, I was like, “Oh man, that’s got to be tough.” And I’m standing between you and the weekend. I’m the only barrier.

Eldad Postan-Koren: David, just to mention, this is me in the middle of the night like imagine what happens like 4 hours before.

David Dulany: Yeah. Definitely. And I was just going to say, I love to come there someday and meet you and just be in the vibe of startup nation. That’s a startup nation.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Startup nation and good food nation.

David Dulany: Yeah, that’s what I’ve heard too. I have so many friends who, Zoom friends, but friends and people that work with our company and it’s way past time to come and visit you.

Eldad Postan-Koren: We are waiting, David. We are waiting for you in the airport now. I’m on my way.

David Dulany: OK. Well, I mean in the meantime, I’m going to get online. Winn.ai with two Ns and start working on my playbook and plug this thing into Zoom so that we can see that performance improvement. And I can’t – I want to follow your journey as develop this product.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Thank you. It’s a crazy ride and I try to – on social media, I try to share part of the stories. And yeah, it’s a very interesting journey no doubt.

David Dulany: Yup, definitely. And so, we will connect as well. I follow you on LinkedIn but everyone should follow Eldad on LinkedIn to see how this journey is playing out. And we will post the link to the podcast there.

Thank you so much for joining us today.

Eldad Postan-Koren: Thank you, David. It was a pleasure.

[End of transcript]

More Appointments. More Pipeline. More Sales.