Customer Value Study

The impact of former customers on the sales funnel

Previous experience is one of the leading influences in buying decisions.  With 30% of Americans forecasted to change jobs this year, tapping into customer job changes creates sizable channel for revenue growth.

After influencing over $126M in pipeline, we wanted to understand the impact of advocate tracking across the entire sales funnel. Based on our data, we found when a former customer is involved, companies are more than 5x as likely to become a customer than those targeted with cold outbound.

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The impact of advocate tracking

Activity -> opp conversion

vs <2% from cold outbound

Average win rate

vs <17% SaaS Average

Total pipeline influenced

in 2023

Total Revenue Influenced

in 2023

About the Data

We examined a sample of data to determine the impact of three types of relationships on the sales funnel: Buying Committee Members (associated with closed-won ops) , Customer Success Contacts, and Product Users. This sample of data includes ~15,000 former champions and ~2,000 opportunities.

Why advocate tracking matters

Previous experience with a product is one of the strongest influences in purchasing decisions. According to TrustRadius, 72% of technology buyers cite their own experience as one of the strongest inputs to purchasing decisions. However, only 33% of companies have employed a strategy to capture former customers. This report examines the results of companies tapping into this signal including:

“Champify has been a game-changer for us, opening up a whole new pipeline and revenue stream that we didn’t have access to before. In a landscape where getting demand is trickier and pricier, turning to our past champions just makes sense. Those nuggets of insight that used to live only in our sales team’s minds as their customers hopped from one company to the next are now out in the open, thanks to Champify. They have effectively enabled us to unlock and act upon these insights, significantly enhancing our approach to relationship management and revenue generation.”

Alexi Hatch
VP Global Growth Marketing

See how Quantum Metric created 8 figures of pipeline with Champify -> 

The impact on conversion on your GTM funnel

The Average Outbound Funnel
the average outbound funnel

Outbound effectiveness is down. It takes between 1000-1400 touches to set just one meeting.  

1. Response rates hover around 2%
2. Rates from a response to an opportunity ~50%
3. Win rates have plummeted, landing around 17% in 2023

Using these baselines, from first touch to closed-won, former advocates convert 6.3x more efficiently.

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Engaging former customers has resulted in a 30% increase in open rate and a 100% increase in response rate, influencing over 7 figures of pipeline. Deals with former champions have a 17% higher win rate.

Advocate impact on activity -> opportunity

Overall our customers see on average a 6% conversion rate from engagement with at least one former customer on an account to opportunity creation. That’s at least 3x more efficient than cold outbound!

Engaging former closed-won contacts is most likely to convert to an opportunity, but even product users have 2.7x efficacy.

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Conversion rate by relationship type
Conversion Rate by Time Since JOB CHANGE
conversion rate by time since job change

Does it matter if the job change is old?

The data says not as much as you might think. The strength of pervious experience as a signal is so strong it continues to perform cold outbound 2.4x, even if the job change was greater than 2 years ago!

"Champify makes the contact identification process much easier" - Ben Coggins, Global Director of Sales Development

Get Navan's guide to creating an SDR Propsecting Dashboard to priortize outbound -> 

Advocate impact on win rate

SaaS win-rate has experienced extreme fluctuations over the past two years with the changing macro-economic environment. The average win-rates in SaaS have experienced a steep decline across 2022-2023 with the average win rate for enterprise deals hovering around 17% (down from 26%).  

When you include champions in your ops you see win rates above the gold-standard of 2021. If a person has been on a buying committee, they are almost 3x more likely to buy again with 49% win rate, followed by CS Contacts (44%) and Product Users (33%).

Close rate by relationship

Compared to the average win rate, opportunities where contacts have had previous experience outperform opportunities where there is none on average 37% to 17%

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opportunities in the first 90 days

Time to pipeline impact

23% of advocates at customer accounts changed jobs the past year. Each month the number of untouched advocates continues to grow. Implementing new strategies and tactics often takes time, but advocate tracking works within your existing systems making it easy for reps to adopt and delivering immediate.

The gap with a manual approach

Most teams have at least one rep using tools like LinkedIn SalesNav. So what are you leaving on the table by incorporating a manual process? On average we have found that CRMs are missing 78% of former champions with qualified job changes*.  Of the champions within the CRM, only 50% of them have been engaged. 

the drop off for manual tracking