Zoominfo’s TechFest is a two day time-out from day-to-day project work where we allow ourselves to think outside the box and brainstorm improvements to ZoomInfo offerings.
As a technology- driven company we of course rely on innovation for all aspects of our product offerings. There is a consistent need for us to both improve our established products and processes as well as to look into the future in order to take our technology to the next level. Undeniably, the driving force of ZoomInfo is our technology and the innovations and improvements we develop now will be what propels us into the future.
Our engineers have responsibility to not only complete their projects on time, but to be constantly focused on what they can do to improve and achieve the ultimate philosophical goal of our development; making the unknown known.
Amid the day to day tasks and resulting pressure to deliver that faces our engineering team, the issue that remains is keeping the department focused on the execution of current projects while simultaneously fostering creativity at the same time. Collectively we realized there was a need for us to take a few days to sit down as a group to clear our heads and discuss what we can do as a team to move us forward. From this need, a TechFest was born 3 years ago. Since then, we have held a number of them, iterating and improving on how to make it more useful for our business and make it more engaging and fun for our engineers.
Before each TechFest, we brainstorm a list of possible topics that may be of interest to explore. This may include a technology that we should look into, a prototype that we think our customers may find interesting, or a productivity tool that can enable our developers to reduce waste in their development tasks. From there, our entire engineering team self-forms into small groups and dives into selected topics or ideas that appeal to them. We have only a few ground rules. They are:
1. Leave your day to day work behind and allow your brain to think about a new and different idea that you may not otherwise have a chance to explore
2. No idea is a bad idea
3. Complete the 2nd day of the TechFest with a demo – yes, we ask for a working code. It can be a very rough prototype, but we need to see something presented and running. We also ask for a wiki page with a brief description of the problem being solved, team working on it, approach chosen, any issues uncovered and so on.
We are in the middle of our TechFest #6. We have found out that even in a relatively short amount of time we can come up with very interesting and useful results that can have a real effect on our company’s ROI. For example, our improved Title Code classification algorithm was born in one of these TechFests.
The value of taking time to hold a TechFest goes beyond just the innovations to our products and technology- it allows for collaboration and teamwork as well as giving our engineering team a stake in the planning and creativity in developing our core technology. Everyone coming together to offer their insights into where we are going technologically takes us to new places we very well may not have gone – not just as a department but as the company as a whole.
Do you think you might be a good fit for the ZoomInfo Engineering team, click here to apply for an open position!
Some of you might remember my post from a few months back here. Last few months, we have been hard at work, trying to build a better product that can help Small Businesses in their lead generation efforts. We conducted a number of surveys (thanks to all of you who took time out to fill it!) and talked to a number of our Connect customers to better understand their usage and needs. This is only the first step in making the product better. We are committed in helping your businesses grow, and we would love to hear from you, if you have any further suggestions. ZoomInfo Connect is a growing community of users, and if you are interested in finding more about it, give us a call or write to us.
Today we are releasing a few features and here is a brief highlight of what you will find in your product today - Continue reading
CQL3 (Cassandra Query Language) is an API to interact with Cassandra, that has syntactical similarities to the commonly used SQL. CQL3 was introduced in Cassandra 1.1 as beta, but became final in Cassandra 1.2. Prior to CQL3, the typical API used to interact with Cassandra was Thrift. Datastax addresses some of the motivation around introducing CQL3 as an alternative to Thrift: Continue reading
LinkedIn recently launched a new analytics tab for the company pages that can be quite helpful if you want to understand your page’s performance better and use it to drive prospects to your business. Even before LinkedIn launched analytics tab, it provided page insights for the company pages. However, the insights were not as detailed as the analytics and page insights are now. In fact, there are a few elements such as clicks, likes, engagement %, that are common to both analytics and page insights. It might be that eventually LinkedIn would combine these two and make one page, but for now, I thought it would be helpful for our readers to make a note of few metrics that can help them understand the useful metrics for their pages.
If you have been working in a function such as web development or marketing, chances are that you have used A/B testing, also known as split testing, in one of your projects. A/B testing is a methodology, especially popular in advertising, that uses randomized experiments with two variants, A and B, in a controlled experiment.
Like most other online advertising, Facebook ads can be difficult to master. But with the help of A/B testing, you can soon start getting insights that would help you create better campaigns, and next time you want to run an ad on Facebook, you will spend lesser and lesser time creating successful ads.
In this post, I will walk you through all the nitty-gritties you need to know about conducting an A/B testing with your Facebook ad – Continue reading
Identifying the right audience is the most important step in the process of finding new customers, prospects or leads. Without knowing your audience, you would not know where to look for them. Once you know what you should be looking for, you can use some of the awesome tools that ZoomInfo has to offer to build the most effective marketing campaigns and target your prospects like you could never before. So how do you go about building your ideal customer’s profile? What parameters can you use to filter a large database in order to build a targeted marketing and sales leads list?
If you have been in business for some time, most likely you have at least a few customers already. Before you look anywhere else, start by thinking about your existing customers. Following questions would help you get to the answers you need to build your buyer’s persona – Continue reading
We all like to insert numbers when making a presentation, whether it is to a client, a prospect or someone internal in the company. Numbers provide factual evidence to any argument, and that is why everybody loves to include numbers in a presentation. But the question here is whether you are presenting the numbers in a way that they would make the impact that you are actually hoping for?
Let me walk you through an example that would illustrate my point better – Continue reading
Lead generation or, in other words, finding new customers, is essential for any business to survive. But every now and then, I believe it is a good idea, for any organization, to revisit its lead generation strategies. One of the ways I like to think about it is by going over a list of all the possible strategies that might be available for lead generation. The marketing team at ZoomInfo thought that it would be a great idea to compile this list and make it available to our readers as well. While many of us might be the lead generation ninjas, it never hurts to go through the ever evolving lead generation strategies once again.
The new guide that we have published covers all the basic concepts of lead generation, including ‘what is a lead?’ and ‘how to define a lead for your organization?’. I would encourage you to download this free resource and use it as best as possible, but I would also like to give a sneak peek of our latest guide. Continue reading
One of the biggest challenges Small Businesses face is acquiring new customers or leads. Having once been a small business owner myself, I couldn’t emphasize this more. You might have heard about many strategies and tools that are available in the market for lead generation. But the problem is that as a small business, working with these tools is often difficult, as you have a number of limitations, such as finite manpower, infrastructure constraints and limited budget. Continue reading