MarTech Interview with Vrahram Kadkhodaian, CEO at PROLIFIQ

MarTech Interview with Vrahram Kadkhodaian, CEO at PROLIFIQ
MarTech Interview with Vrahram Kadkhodaian, CEO at PROLIFIQ

“Consumers are smarter about what they want, so vendors servicing them need to get better at engaging with them.”

Tell us about your role and journey into Technology. What inspired you to start at PROLIFIQ?

I’ve spent my entire career in CRM and HighTech, selling into organizations that need to operationalize their sales, marketing, and customer service business units. I was inspired to join PROLIFIQ because its products fill some of the biggest gaps in CRM actually helping sales professionals sell.

What is PROLIFIQ and how does it make Sales teams more powerful?

PROLIFIQ is a Sales Enablement productivity suite for the Salesforce Customer. We brought the two most valuable selling motions (Key Account Management and Digital Content Management) back into Salesforce. In almost every organization, these things happen outside of the CRM which is counterproductive and creates huge challenges.

Why should Marketing and Sales teams leverage Sales Enablement platforms? What are the benefits?

They leverage them already but not always in unison with their CRM Strategies. Documents, spreadsheets, PowerPoints and static ‘things’ fly all around the companies. However, they are not standardized or created for the way the sales professional sells making it very difficult for the end-user to do their job. The benefit of having an integrated CRM/Sales Enablement strategy is pretty logical. Sales professionals leverage CRM to do what they need to do which is to serve their customers and grow their book of business all within one platform.

How do you focus on bringing Automation and AI together at PROLIFIQ? What are the core technologies driving your product?

We’re fortunate enough to have the power of the Salesforce Platform behind us and we are beneficiaries of the powerful AI capabilities Einstein has to offer. As a native app, we can leverage the data and insights within CRM and complement them with Einstein to drive those capabilities for our customers.

Tell us more about your Salesforce-side of the business. How do you leverage Salesforce features to solve customer’s challenges?

We complement, not compete with Salesforce. Many Sales Enablement applications compete with CRM. PROLIFIQ extends CRM Capabilities to the sales reps versus trying to recreate what CRM already does.

According to you, which set of industries and departments are the fastest to adopt Sales Enablement for their sales success?

It’s really anyone that has a B2B Business Model and works closely with others to manage customers and prospects. Some of the industries that have been very fast adopters for us include HighTech, MedTech, FinTech, Professional Services, and Manufacturing.

What message do you have for the industries that are lagging in the race or are yet to invest in Sales Enablement platforms?

Define what Sales Enablement means for you. It’s a broad term– It can mean training, technology, process, etc. We are the technology provider, but we incorporate all of these aspects of ‘Sales Enablement’ in our offerings.

Which Marketing and Sales Automation tools and technologies do you currently use?

At PROLIFIQ, we practice what we preach; our sales and marketing efforts live and breathe in Salesforce and AppExchange. Whether using our own Sales Enablement suite or the apps that round out our multichannel approach to marketing, we go native every chance we get. It simplifies mundane tasks and keeps us focused.

What are your predictions on the most impactful disruptions in the Salesforce technology for 2019-2020?

I think Einstein and AI are going to change this industry. Consumers are smarter about what they want, so vendors servicing them need to get better at engaging with them. I see our future hinged around predictability, but it’s dangerous because AI is powered by data. So, data quality is paramount and that’s driven by simplifying platforms, not complicating them.

What startups in the technology industry are you watching keenly right now?

There are so many. I really love what’s happening in tech right now – so many entrepreneurs and companies are challenging the status quo and disrupting the same way that PROLIFIQ is.

How do you prepare for an AI-centric world as a Business Leader?

Define AI for your business first. AI is a slippery slope if you don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish in the first place and what business value it’s going to drive. Having AI just to have AI isn’t a strategy.

How do you inspire your people to work with technology?

It needs to be seamless. The technology needs to complement their natural selling motions and it needs to make their lives easier. The second the ‘shiny toy’ starts deviating their motions, it becomes a distraction.

One word that best describes how you work.

GRITTY

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?

Salesforce CRM, email

What’s your smartest work-related shortcut or productivity hack?

Dashboards with every detail or metric I need at my fingertips to manage the business.  Also, in this age of email and disconnected communication, I feel like picking up the phone is becoming productivity have, believe it or not.

What are you currently reading?

I’m reading ‘Unshakeable’ by Tony Robbins. I consume information in a variety of different ways and it really comes down to the type of information I’m consuming. I prefer discussion.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

That’s a tough one; there are so many. I think this one applies to all of the entrepreneurs out there: “Successful people are successful for one simple reason: they think about failure differently.”

Something you do better than others – the secret of your success?

When you break away from all the noise, it all comes down to GRIT

Tag the one person in the industry whose answers to these questions you would love to read:

Marc Benioff @benioff

Thank you, Vrahram! That was fun and hope to see you back on MarTech Series soon.

As CEO, Vrahram is passionate about driving record growth, exceeding customer expectations and being an employer of choice. He specializes in scaling and building teams with methods that are proven across all market segments. Prior to leading PROLIFIQ, he served as an executive sales leader at Salesforce where he contributed to the company’s hyper growth and he has over a decade of additional sales leadership experience.

prolifiq logo

PROLIFIQ is the leading sales enablement company, pioneering native Salesforce account planning and content delivery software that empowers sales teams to boost performance and become trusted customer advisers.

The world’s leading brands choose PROLIFIQ to crush competitors and ace the customer experience.

The MTS Martech Interview Series is a fun Q&A style chat which we really enjoy doing with martech leaders. With inspiration from Lifehacker’s How I work interviews, the MarTech Series Interviews follows a two part format On Marketing Technology, and This Is How I Work. The format was chosen because when we decided to start an interview series with the biggest and brightest minds in martech – we wanted to get insight into two areas … one – their ideas on marketing tech and two – insights into the philosophy and methods that make these leaders tick.

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