Finding sales leads isn’t easy and cold calling isn’t that efficient. That’s why Evan Sohn started SalesConx in 2007. It’s a site that combines an expert system with social networking, providing a place where businesses can post the leads that they need.
If a business needs to find contacts for small businesses in a city, they can say they will pay $20 for each contact. Then someone with the right contacts can answer. Salesconx acts as a trusted middleman. It collects the fee ahead of time and then pays the fee, less a 20 percent commission, to the seller.
If this sounds familiar, it’s because we recently wrote about LeadVine, another referral site. There are a variety of competitors: Myndnet.com, FaceContact, Inquisix, and Passitto. Sohn, chief executive of SalesConx, said his New York company has considerable traction with 3,700 users. Business is growing about 30 percent each month.
There are a lot of repeat customers among those users in 40 industries across the U.S. They get the benefit of being efficiently introduced to decision makers, whether it’s small business owners or executives at top companies.
Today, he is announcing the company has raised $1.5 million in angel funding for its first round. The site launched as a beta test in November and went live in January. Computer and business services are the most popular industries for the referral business. The fees range from $50 to $15,000, depending on the type of lead needed.
“This is a crossroads of social networking and paying for performance,” said Sohn, a 20-year sales veteran on his fifth startup.
Sohn said the company will continue to add capabilities for the platform.