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SAN FRANCISCO — The whole idea that sales can and should become more data-driven? It doesn’t sound that crazy after all.

DoubleDutch, a startup that creates mobile apps and analytics tools for conferences, has increased sales by a factor of 300 percent, and software from InsideSales.com has played a major part, helping the DoubleDutch salespeople spot the best people to interact with in order to maximize results.

“It’s really just helping us optimize everything we do at the company,” Russ Hearl, vice president of global sales development at DoubleDutch, said at VentureBeat’s 2014 GrowthBeat conference.

While the salespeople get concrete tips, Hearl himself can see what’s going on.

“Were always looking at … cycle time,” Hearl said. “As a business, that’s a really important one to look at. But personally, I’m always looking at the conversation to demo rates. If one rep is having a 5 percent demo rate and the average is 18 percent, you know, what’s going on there?”

Small wonder investors have expressed serious interest in InsideSales and other predictive sales and marketing tools that can make the most of sales and marketing employees and ultimately boost sales. InsideSales announced a $100 million round in April, and Lattice Engines has also consistently picked up funding. Context Relevant just got a $21 million round, and 6sense came out of stealth with $12 million in May.

Infer, which offers predictive marketing and sales tools, has been taking on more customers based on last year’s funding round, and Salesforce.com bought RelateIQ, which built ways to automatically collect data from salespeople’s interactions and suggest the best people to contact.

The common denominator here seems to be the startups’ strong belief in statistics and math, which are not historically the strengths of legendary salespeople.

“We believe math is going to trump anything else,” said Mick Hollison, InsideSales’ chief marketing officer. “Science hasn’t been applied to sales in quite the same way it’s applied to marketing or other systems to date.”


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