Case Study: Leaf Security Wins with Cross-Sell After Acquisition
Knowing attach rates for products from two merging companies can enable a winning cross-sell strategy that separates a successful acquisition from a failure.
About Leaf Security
Leaf Security is the pseudonym for a security software company that has been using the Rekener Account Control Center to grow revenue using data from multiple sources, including their Salesforce CRM and Marketo marketing automation platform. Leaf has a large portfolio of products and a sales team that includes inside sales for SMB and mid-market accounts as well as account executives for larger enterprise customers. Leaf has been very successful growing revenue by increasing net new business, while also growing accounts by upsell and cross-sell.
The Bamboo Software Acquisition Creates Big Challenges
Leaf Security was recently acquired by Bamboo Software. Bamboo has acquired several other businesses over recent years, and now has a large portfolio of products. Many of these products are complementary and can be sold to the same customer.
When Leaf was acquired, there was a strong desire by both teams to reap the benefits of the complementary nature of Leaf’s products with those of the Bamboo team. Expectations for synergy between the companies, especially for cross-sell of complementary products, was high, and this translated into big sales goals for the Leaf team.
For Leaf, there was a major challenge to figure out how to take advantage of the fact that they were now part of Bamboo Software. Leaf also wanted to make sure they didn’t lose the great momentum they had selling their own software products using their normal sales motions.
Leaf chose to use the Rekener Account Control Center to build a strategy around cross-sell and then execute plays that would produce maximum benefit, without taking their eye off the ball of their normal sales process.
Several things needed to occur in order for Leaf to determine a strategy and execute plays for cross-sell.
See Which Accounts have which Products
Since Leaf already had a Rekener subscription prior to the acquisition, they already had their Salesforce and Marketo data integrated into Rekener. This gave Leaf a very clear understanding of the products purchased by all of their accounts, as well as the patterns by which those accounts had grown over time.
What they needed was to overlay data from Bamboo to find who the mutual and non-mutual customers are. Rekener was able to take historical sales data from Bamboo, and match it to Leaf’s Salesforce account data -- in less than 1 week. So in the course of 1 week, Leaf went from having very limited visibility into who Bamboo customers were, to having full visibility of all the accounts and which products they own. Rekener is flexibly designed to track key metrics, and was able to easily summarize how much active subscription revenue each has for all of the Leaf and Bamboo product lines.
Overlap by Product
Once they had visibility into which accounts have which products, Leaf was able to assess overlap between products. Using Rekener, they could easily see which products tend to have the most mutual Leaf / Bamboo customers. Also, which products do not naturally have overlapping customers. This provided a level of focus so Leaf would not need to pursue customers that have products that don’t tend to overlap. Instead, Leaf could place their effort on the most cross-sell opportunities with the best chance of success.
Above: Screenshot from Rekener showing how much overlapping revenue exists by product. Bamboo products A through E have good overlap with Leaf customers -- there are many customers that have revenue of both a Bamboo and a Leaf product. Products F through K do not have any overlap between the two businesses.
Leaf also used Rekener to easily slice product data by industry. They gained quick and simple visibility into which industries Leaf is strongest in, and which industries Bamboo is strongest in. This can be incorporated into tactics where Leaf can leverage relationships that Bamboo has built in order to gain entry into industries Leaf has not yet penetrated.
Above: Assessment of product revenue by industry. Leaf Software performs better in Consulting and Financial industries, relative to Bamboo. Bamboo performs best in Electronics and Manufacturing.
Finding Cross-Sell Targets
After assessing products and industries for overlap, Leaf began putting together target lists for cross-sell. With Rekener, they can find the accounts that have a Bamboo product, but not a Leaf product. Specifically, they can zoom in on the Bamboo products that tend to overlap best with Leaf’s offerings. Leaf can quickly and easily produce lists of cross-sell targets, including information about the account owner from the Bamboo team, so that they can collaborate on the best approach for introducing Leaf products into an existing Bamboo contract.
The bottom line
Leaf was able to very quickly gain the insight needed to develop a cross-sell strategy. They had visibility into overlap between their business and the Bamboo business within weeks. By comparison, it typically takes months to integrate Salesforce instances following a merger.
Additionally, merging Salesforce instances causes a host of other issues and is rife with problems around matching up accounts to detect which accounts are actually the same company. Rekener does this type of account matching automatically, so that Leaf did not need to worry about data aggregation and cleanup, and instead could focus on insight and execution. Further, Rekener’s analytical and operational tools allowed Leaf to find and target the best accounts for maximizing revenue.
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Greg is COO and Co-Founder at Rekener. Greg’s entire career has been focused on using BizOps to grow recurring revenue businesses. Before joining Rekener, he served as VP of Operations at ZeroTurnaround, where he built its BizOps practice and team. He did the same for the AVOKE call center analytics business, a SaaS company within BBN Technologies. He got his start in BizOps for recurring revenue businesses while at AppNeta.
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