Firmology’s Meet & Greet series takes an inside look at the technology available to small business owners and entrepreneurs, straight from the founders who built them.
Name: Nick Bertolino
Company Name: PipelineDeals
Company One Liner: Simple and useful CRM in the cloud.
Location: Philadelphia,PA and Seattle, WA
Website Address: http://www.pipelinedeals.com
Best Way to Contact Me:
- Twitter: @nickbertolino
- Email: [email protected]
- LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/pub/
Tell us about yourself and your background.
I have spent most of my career in the software and technology startup space. I have worked in a variety of roles and functions, including sales, management consulting, operations, account management, project management, and software development and implementation.
My career has always been about solving problems with technology and making ideas happen. I enjoy nothing more than taking a concept, written on the back of a napkin, and bringing that idea to life in the form of software product, website or business.
What does your company do and what problem does it solve for businesses?
PipelineDeals helps small and medium sized businesses organize their sales efforts and track sales activities. We provide a simple tool to manage leads, contacts, and deals as well as keep track of a company’s sales pipeline. We’re passionate about creating software that people want to use and share. If our customers sell more products/services, we are doing our job well.
How did you come up with the idea for your company?
The idea came from two primary sources: 1) my background and experience implementing large and complicated CRM systems and 2) our need for a simple tool to manage the sales pipeline of our consulting business.
We felt like the larger players in the CRM space,such as Salesforce and Oracle were missing the mark. They were too complicated, had too many features and required a consulting firm costing a lot of money to get implemented. And on the other end of the spectrum, old school products such as Act and Goldmine were not enough to help give a SMB visibility to their sales activities. They were focused primarily on contact management.
So, our vision from the start and today, is to provide a tool in between those two spectrums balancing simplicity, and power, and helping a business keep track of their sales activities.
What makes your company different from your competitors?
We are in the Software as a Service (SaaS) business. We really try to emphasize the service component. We try to go above and beyond in helping our customers understand how best to use the product to sell more products/services and provide white glove support for questions and any issues that arise. We also coach customers on their sales processes, and how best to manage their sales pipeline from a business perspective.
What are the most important considerations businesses should have when choosing technology to help them power their business?
Today, there are so many tools on the market, it sometimes gets overwhelming for a business. Businesses should consider the value the tool provides when thinking about toolsets to run their business. For example, Constant Contact provides value by allowing businesses to easily manage, and nurture customer relationships from email marketing, thereby driving incremental sales. Our customers tell us we provide value by helping them win more business, keep track of sales activities, and being the master repository for their customer and sales data.
What other companies or entrepreneurs within the technology space do you admire and think businesses should know about?
- David Skok, Jason Lemkin, Christoph Janz, and Gail Goodman (CEO at Constant Contact) are all people we pay attention to.
- ZenDesk - We like and use ZenDesk to manage our customer support tickets.
- Atlassian - We use both Hipchat as our group chat tool and Jira as our bug tracking/agile tool.
- Mailchimp - We use the product, integrate with it, and just are impressed with how they have built the company and brand.
- Quip - I like what Bret Taylor, former CTO of Facebook, is trying to accomplish with Quip. The tool is a simple, modern collaborative word processor/note taking tool and task management system. I recommend it to small businesses and our customers.
- Hubspot - We have followed Dharmesh Shah for years and admire the company they are building.
Anything else Firmology readers and business owners should know? News? Upcoming features? Special deals?
We just launched a native Android mobile app this month and have some exciting features in the works planned for 2014. More on that coming soon.
Firmology Readers: Let’s hear your thoughts!
1) Have a question or comment about PipelineDeals? Drop Nick a note in the comments below.
2) Who would you like to see on Firmology’s Meet & Greet series? Are there other questions we should be asking? Are any of the questions above unclear or could be asked in a better way? Let us know in the comments below or email us at [email protected]
If you’re the founder of a tech company focused on helping businesses and would like to be featured on Firmology’s Meet & Greet series, please email us at [email protected] with the subject line: Meet & Greet Submission.