In the world of sales, every call is important. When talking to potential customers, they reveal valuable information that can help salespeople create urgency, address concerns, speed up the sales process, and close more deals.
However, analyzing the content of multiple calls, finding patterns, and spotting opportunities and insights can be time-consuming. It also takes sales teams away from more important activities, including building relationships with prospects and generating revenue.
That's where conversation intelligence comes in.
It transforms the data from your sales calls into digestible insights and enables you to coach your team based on their conversations with prospects. This, in turn, helps you increase the chances of closing more deals and guides your team toward success. In this article, we'll learn how conversation intelligence works and explore the best tools available in the market, so you can start using them today.
Conversation intelligence software relies on AI to analyze and extract valuable insights from various conversations, especially those that take place during sales interactions. It identifies and surfaces useful data points, including customer sentiment, buying signals, objections, successful methods, and areas that need improvement.
This helps sales teams make smart choices, improve their sales techniques, and close deals faster.
Conversation intelligence software works by leveraging AI to process video and audio data from sales calls. Here's how the process typically unfolds:
1. Call Recording: It automatically records sales calls in real-time. Some tools may also allow you to upload recordings from video conferencing platforms like Zoom, Google Meet, or Teams.
2. Real-time Transcription: The software transcribes the conversation into written text—often in real-time. This transcription serves as the foundation for further analysis and insights.
3. Keyword and Topic Detection: AI algorithms scan the transcribed text to detect specific keywords and topics discussed during the call. This enables sales teams to identify which aspects of the pitch resonate with prospects and which ones need improvement.
4. Talk-Listen Ratio: Conversation intelligence software calculates the talk-listen ratio, indicating the balance of speaking between the sales rep and the prospect. Understanding this ratio helps identify opportunities for improved active listening and engagement.
5. Call Analytics: Platforms may offer comprehensive call analytics, presenting data on call duration, call frequency, average call success rate, and more. These analytics help managers spot trends and patterns across sales calls.
6. Playlist Creation: Some platforms allow users to curate playlists of successful call segments or examples for coaching purposes. These playlists become valuable training resources for onboarding new reps or improving the skills of existing team members.
7. Integration with CRM: Many conversation intelligence tools integrate seamlessly with popular Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems like Salesforce or HubSpot. This integration ensures that the recorded call data and insights are readily available within the CRM for reference and analysis.
8. Collaboration and Sharing: The software enables easy sharing of call snippets or summaries with team members, enabling collaboration and knowledge sharing within the sales team.
Conversation intelligence software offers various advantages that significantly benefit sales teams:
1. Personalized Sales Coaching: With the help of this software, sales managers can provide personalized coaching and feedback to individual reps. They can use data-driven insights from their calls to pinpoint areas for improvement and offer targeted guidance, leading to better performance and professional growth for each team member.
2. Automate CRM Data Entry: Conversation intelligence software can automate the process of entering relevant data into the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. By integrating with the CRM platform, the software automatically logs important call details, key insights, and customer interactions. This streamlines the administrative burden on sales reps, allowing them to focus more on selling and building relationships with customers, rather than spending valuable time on manual data entry.
3. Rep Performance Improvement: Reps can leverage conversation intelligence to learn from successful calls. By analyzing effective techniques and strategies used in these calls, they can replicate those approaches and refine their sales pitches. This leads to increased confidence and competence, ultimately resulting in improved sales outcomes.
4. Pipeline Visibility: Sales leaders gain valuable visibility into the sales pipeline through conversation intelligence. They can track the progress of deals, identify bottlenecks or stalled opportunities, and spot potential upsell opportunities. This enhanced visibility allows for proactive management of the sales process and ensures that the team focuses on the most promising prospects.
5. Accurate Sales Forecasts: Armed with comprehensive call analytics, managers can make more accurate sales forecasts based on historical call data. This data-driven approach reduces guesswork and provides a clearer understanding of future revenue projections, leading to better-informed decision-making.
6. Improved Customer Understanding: Conversation intelligence provides valuable insights that enable sales reps to better understand customer pain points, objections, and preferences. Armed with this knowledge, reps can tailor their approach to meet specific customer needs, leading to more personalized and effective interactions.
7. Faster Onboarding: New sales reps can accelerate their learning curve with the help of conversation intelligence. By studying successful call examples and best practices compiled in curated playlists, they can quickly grasp effective selling techniques and gain confidence in their roles. This streamlined onboarding process ensures that new team members become productive contributors in a shorter period.
Grain is an AI meeting automation platform that helps sales teams leverage AI to handle all the admin work so they can focus on customers and closing more deals. Grain joins your calls to take notes, document the next steps, and files your automated notes in your preferred platforms like Slack, HubSpot, Salesforce, and more.
“Grain un-complicates call recording and conversation intelligence.”
- Colby Morgan, Head of Sales and Customer Success, Tango.
- AI Notes: Grain automatically joins sales calls to record, transcribe, and summarize the conversation using AI, eliminating the need for manual note-taking. You’ll get a concise summary along with the list of key points and next steps with clickable time-stamps so that you can click to return to the video and replay the key moments from any sales call.
- Talk-Listen Ratio: Grain calculates the talk-listen ratio during sales calls, allowing managers to assess how effectively their sales reps engage with prospects and identify areas for improvement.
- Speaker Timelines: Sales teams can navigate through sales calls easily using speaker timelines, making it convenient to find specific moments and review key points of the conversation.
- Coaching and Feedback: With highlights, it’s simple to annotate and share specific moments from sales calls to provide targeted feedback to sales reps. Select the transcript text, add your comment, and share the video clip anywhere.
“Grain is a coaching tool. It allows me to listen to my closers. I need the ability to see what they’re doing right or wrong so that I can coach them.”
- Tucker Hutchinson, VP of Revenue, User Interviews.
- Playlists: With Grain, you can effortlessly stitch together video highlights from multiple sales calls and create game tapes and "best of" playlists. These playlists are perfect for coaching your new reps on best practices.
- CRM Data Entry: Grain integrates with popular CRM systems like HubSpot and Salesforce, enabling seamless synchronization of customer call data with relevant CRM records, such as leads, contacts, accounts, and opportunities.
“I save up to 25 minutes after every sales call as Grain automatically generates and adds the call notes in HubSpot for me."
- Max Stoiber, Founder and CEO, Stellate.
- Automations: Grain's AI-generated call summaries can be automatically shared with your team on Slack. No need to join calls or listen to lengthy recordings—it’s easier than ever to catch up and stay informed.
Grain is free to get started. You can try it out with a team of up to 5 members and collectively record up to 100 sales calls (20 calls per user) for free. When you decide to upgrade, each user costs $15 per month. The best part is you only pay for the recording seats.
Grain is an excellent choice for SMB sales teams interested in using conversation intelligence to gain insights from customer interactions, effectively coach their reps, and share valuable knowledge within the team.
G2: 4.6 out of 5. Grain has been named a leader in Conversation Intelligence, Transcription, Meeting Management, and several other categories.
“We had been evaluating other solutions such as Gong, Outreach, and Salesloft but were left frustrated as those were so over-baked and overkill for what we needed. I had Grain up and running in 15 minutes. My calls and notes are well organized and easily accessible by my team.”
Chorus.ai is a conversation intelligence platform designed for larger B2B sales teams. It records, transcribes, and analyzes sales calls to provide actionable insights and recommendations, helping sales teams improve their productivity and close more deals.
- Sales Activity and Engagement Tracking: Chorus captures and analyzes customer interactions, such as calls, meetings, and emails, providing real-time insights into sales team performance.
- CRM Data Entry: The platform automatically syncs contacts and communication data to the CRM, offering complete visibility into customer relationships and deal progression.
- Call Analytics: Chorus delivers actionable insights such as average talk time and filler words, and offers tagging features to streamline training and enablement processes.
- Deal Risk Identification: The platform prioritizes and flags at-risk deals, helping sales teams focus on opportunities that need immediate attention and increasing win rates.
- AI Forecasting: Chorus AI-Powered Forecasting delivers accurate revenue predictions based on historical sales data, customer interactions, and market trends. This enables informed decision-making, effective resource allocation, and agile planning for future growth.
Chorus.ai's pricing starts at $8000 per year for three seats, with additional seats available at $1200 per year. While the platform is relatively more expensive than some alternatives, its feature-rich offering makes it suitable for larger sales teams.
Chorus.ai is ideal for larger B2B sales teams looking for in-depth conversation intelligence insights to enhance their sales performance.
G2: 4.5 out of 5
“The ability to easily set trackers and modify them based on shifting market trends is a bonus. We are able to quickly and efficiently understand what our reps are talking about, what our customers are looking for, and share learnings / best practices and approaches in real-time.”
Salesloft is a comprehensive sales engagement platform that offers conversation intelligence as part of its feature set. The platform helps sales teams communicate with buyers, understand their performance, and gain insights to win more deals.
- Cadence + Automation: Salesloft enables sales teams to plan, create, and send personalized emails, voice, and text messages to buyers.
- Dialer + Messenger: The platform offers a convenient dialer and messenger feature, enabling one-click calls to buyers and providing voice mail drop and sentiment analytics.
- Deals: Salesloft's Deals feature allows teams to manage pipeline data, forecast deals, identify at-risk deals, and take action to accelerate sales cycles.
- CRM Integration: Salesloft integrates with popular CRM systems, allowing sales teams to keep call data and customer interactions seamlessly linked with CRM records.
- Conversation Intelligence: Salesloft's conversation intelligence feature enables call recording, transcribing, and analyzing sales calls to provide actionable insights for coaching and performance improvement.
Salesloft's per-user pricing ranges from $125 to $165 per month, depending on the products chosen. The platform offers the flexibility to opt-in for specific products that match the team's requirements.
Salesloft is an excellent choice for sales teams consolidating their tool stack, as it offers a suite of products to manage sales engagement and provides conversation intelligence for coaching and performance insights.
G2: 4.5 out of 5
“The elimination of our conversation intelligence system, as well as the consolidation into one centralized location has hugely positively affected the efficiency of our sales team's operations. This is the first time all sales procedures can be administered from one central point.”
Outreach is another sales engagement platform that offers a suite of products designed to create and close more pipeline. It also provides conversation intelligence to help sales teams analyze sales calls and gain insights for coaching and deal management.
- Deal Management: Outreach's Deal Management feature provides a snapshot of every deal in the pipeline, helping sales teams stay on top of deal progress and potential risks.
- Rep Coaching: Sales managers can review sales calls from their team, share key moments with stakeholders, and build playlists to facilitate coaching and share best practices.
- Deal Insights: Outreach offers AI-generated deal insights to identify at-risk deals, providing actionable recommendations to guide sales reps toward successful outcomes.
- Pipeline Management: Sales teams can gain a comprehensive view of their pipeline, track rep productivity, and analyze pipeline movement over time.
- CRM Integration: Outreach integrates with CRM systems, ensuring call data and insights are readily available within the CRM for a holistic view of customer interactions.
Outreach offers two types of licenses, Accelerate and Optimized, priced at $80 and $140 per user per month, respectively. While Outreach does not have a platform subscription fee like Gong, there might be a one-time implementation fee.
Outreach is ideal for larger sales teams looking for deal intelligence, advanced forecasting, and integrated conversation intelligence for coaching and sales performance improvement.
G2: 4.3 out of 5.
“Outreach is the best sales engagement platform out there. I've been using them for over five years now, and they are constantly innovating but staying best-of-breed regarding what they do. Sequences are their bread and butter, but all their other features are also amazing. Their support team is top-notch, and our CSM is also excellent.”
Wingman is a conversation intelligence platform specifically designed to record, transcribe, and provide coaching insights from sales calls. It focuses on empowering sales teams to share insights and analyze customer conversations.
- Call Recording and Transcription: Wingman automatically records and transcribes sales calls, making it easier for sales teams to search, review, and analyze customer conversations.
- Shareable Snippets: Sales teams can share specific call snippets internally with a few clicks, allowing for easy collaboration and knowledge sharing.
- Call Scoring: Wingman offers contextual call scoring to assess and score reps after each call, providing feedback on their progress and performance over time.
- Pipeline Health Scanner: The platform helps sales managers spot at-risk deals and provides visibility into the status of deals in the pipeline.
- Seamless Integrations: Wingman allows the import of sales calls from dialers like Salesloft and Outreach, in addition to video conferencing software, enhancing data accessibility.
Wingman's conversation intelligence product starts at $720 per rep per year with an annual commitment. Please note that call data is retained for one year. For access beyond three years, an enterprise plan is available, starting at $1,320 per rep per year.
Wingman is ideal for sales teams interested in in-depth analysis and sharing insights from sales calls, with a focus on sales performance coaching and improving customer interactions.
G2: 4.5 out of 5.
“Love that I have the ability to look back at my recording to review in case I've missed some important bits. It also really helps me improve my speech - pace, repeated words etc. I love that you can rewind to a certain word by finding that in the dialogue and seeing the longest time you've spoken consecutively.”
Gong is one of the leading conversation intelligence platforms in the market, known for its robust capabilities in recording, transcribing, and analyzing sales calls. It caters to sales teams of all sizes and is particularly popular among larger enterprises.
- Conversation Capture: Gong automatically captures and records sales calls, providing accurate and reliable data for analysis and coaching purposes.
- AI-Driven Insights: Gong leverages AI to extract valuable insights from conversations, including talk ratios, sentiment analysis, and keyword detection.
- Deal Analytics: Sales managers can gain deep visibility into the sales pipeline, identify deal risks, and forecast with confidence based on historical call data.
- Collaboration and Coaching: Gong offers features for collaboration and coaching, enabling sales reps and managers to share best practices and improve performance.
- Integration with CRM and Sales Tools: Gong seamlessly integrates with popular CRM systems and other sales tools, streamlining data synchronization and analysis.
Gong's pricing varies based on the size of the sales team and the specific features required. It typically involves a platform subscription fee and additional costs per user. On average, each Gong customer pays $30k annually.
Gong is suitable for sales teams in larger enterprises, looking for a comprehensive conversation intelligence solution with advanced analytics and collaboration features.
We've talked about gong alternatives in detail here.
G2: 4.7 out of 5.
“Gong's forecasting and reporting truly simplifies what's going on within your business from a sales perspective. Their dashboard is much easier to read and collaborate in than any report in Salesforce. Gong gives both our sales reps and our sales leaders more immediate visibility into our sales pipeline and instantly helps find gaps, so you can manage deals more efficiently and effectively. Their CS team is quick to respond and support.”
HubSpot Conversation Intelligence is designed to bring the voice of the customer directly into your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system and provide valuable insights from customer calls. It helps businesses better understand their team's performance on customer calls, offers data-driven insights for coaching their sales team, and integrates seamlessly with various calling services and HubSpot's CRM database.
- Voice Data: The tool automatically captures voice data from customer calls and stores it in your HubSpot CRM. This enables you to have a comprehensive record of customer interactions, making it easier to analyze and gain insights.
- Performance Tracking: HubSpot Conversation Intelligence allows you to easily track your sales team's performance on customer calls. By analyzing call data, you can identify trends, patterns, and performance metrics, which can be used to provide coaching and training to improve sales outcomes.
- Coaching and Feedback: The software empowers managers to become effective coaches by offering them tools to train new representatives and provide feedback on specific moments in a call. This helps in improving individual and team performance over time.
- Customer Insights: The tool leverages the rich source of insights present in customer conversations. By analyzing call data, you can better understand customer needs, preferences, and pain points. Tracked terms and conversations provide a complete overview of customer interactions, enabling better-informed decision-making.
- Integration with CRM: HubSpot Conversation Intelligence seamlessly integrates with HubSpot's CRM database, providing a centralized platform to manage customer interactions, sales data, and insights. This integration streamlines the workflow and makes it easier to access relevant information.
HubSpot Sales Hub offers various pricing plans, starting from free to more advanced options with additional features, catering to the needs of businesses of all sizes.
HubSpot Sales Hub is an excellent choice for sales teams looking for an all-in-one sales solution that includes conversation intelligence features. It is suitable for businesses of different sizes, from startups to enterprises, looking to streamline their sales processes and leverage AI-driven insights.
G2: 4.4 out of 5.
“We use Hubspot Sales Hub to maximize the output of our sales team. It helps us to track and make better decisions to sell to the right customers and coach reps as it has incredible analytics data.”
- G2 review.
Zoom IQ is a conversation intelligence add-on product from Zoom, designed to analyze sales calls and deals and provide actionable insights and recommendations.
- Sentiment and Engagement Metrics: Zoom IQ offers sentiment analysis, talk-listen ratio, talking speed, longest monologue, and patience score, helping sales teams identify areas for improvement and coaching opportunities.
- Deal Tracking: Sales managers can understand every deal in the pipeline and view deals by stage, size, teams, and more, with an activity timeline providing insights on potential at-risk deals.
- Playlist Creation: Sales teams can curate playlists of best practices and examples from past sales calls, helping new reps shorten their learning curve and onboard faster.
- CRM Integration: Zoom IQ integrates with CRM systems, providing added context by combining data from phone and video calls with information from the CRM.
Zoom IQ is available at $79 per month per user (or $948 per year) for licensed Zoom users.
Zoom IQ is a cost-effective solution for Zoom users seeking advanced conversation intelligence features and integration with their existing video conferencing platform.
G2: 4.5 out of 5.
“Using Zoom IQ is useful for tracking the duration of time spent talking. It allows retrospective analysis on what aspects of your presentation need tweaking to give a more concise presentation."
- User review.
The choice of conversation intelligence software ultimately depends on the specific needs and preferences of your sales team. Whether you opt for Grain's simplicity and affordability, Chorus.ai's comprehensive analytics, Salesloft's suite of sales engagement tools, Outreach's deal intelligence and forecasting, Wingman's focus on coaching insights, or Zoom IQ's integration with Zoom, each platform offers unique advantages to drive your sales team's success. Evaluate the features, pricing, and suitability for your team size and goals, and make an informed decision to empower your sales team with valuable conversation intelligence insights.