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Products we love: Drift

Brian McDonaldBrian McDonald
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Drift makes it easy for your customers to buy.

Drift is a messaging platform founded by David Cancel and Elias Torres.
Their product is focused on helping marketing and sales teams interact with potential customers.

At 8bytes we use Drift on our website to talk to our potential customers while they are visiting our site in real time (You can most likely see it on the right hand side of this page). In the past our leads would have to reach out to us to start a dialog but with Drift we can be proactive.

When we engage our leads as they browse our website we catch them at the perfect moment. Drift allows us to not only message our leads but also offer support to current customers too. As a small team we use Drift's Slack integration to keep us informed about new conversations while in the office and use their mobile app to take Drift with us when we're on the move.

I caught up with Matt Bilotti, Product Manager at Drift to talk about Drift.

Matt, in your own words what is Drift?

Drift is a messaging platform that helps marketing and sales teams capture, qualify, and connect with their leads.

Selling in particular has changed a lot in the past few years, people are moving away from cold calling and cold emailing, how does a product like Drift look to change those interactions?

Think about how you want to communicate with a business and how you want to purchase something. You have access to all the information you need before a sale and you want to be able to connect with a person right when you have a question, not be called when inconvenient or wait around for days. Drift helps leads get a direct line to a sales rep the moment they're ready to buy or enter the buying process.

You've recently launched Live View to allow users to talk to people as they visit their site rather than retroactively, how important is it to reduce that gap in time between a users visit and you reaching out/responding to them?

The data shows that responding to a lead within 5 minutes is key. We also tested the response time of 433 sales teams and realized that many companies are missing the mark in terms of responding to leads quickly. Live View lets a sales rep or BDR hunt down their target prospects and reach out to them when they're looking at your site in real time to spark a conversation. The ability to connect with somebody before they have a direct question helps them know you're there for them...just like how a person behind the counter greets you when you walk into a store.

As a software engineer its very impressive how often the product gets updated, how does Drift ship new features so regularly?

We've actually crafted our own method and process of creating products, which we call Burndown - https://seekingwisdom.io/how-we-build-products-at-drift-7024357d953b. We work in microsprints, which allow us to ship incremential updates that add value to customers on a daily basis.

One aspect of Drift I find very interesting is that every member of the team periodically does a support shift, whats the benefit behind doing that?

Having everyone at the team do support shifts keeps us all close to our customers. It allows people to get firsthand feedback and also forces everyone to actually use the product they're building. It helps us build empathy and a true sense of ownership over what we're working here to create.

How can people sign up and try Drift?

Head right to app.drift.com/getstarted - it only takes a couple minutes to get setup!

You can find Matt on Twitter @MattBilotti and Drift @Drift.

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