Developer Spotlight: Sammy James, Speak2leads

sammy james speak2leadsSammy, the founder and CEO of Speak2leads, is a real entrepreneur. We see a fantasy presented in the press of entrepreneurs as people who get rich quick through building a company around a fashionable idea and then exiting at a crazy valuation with no real business behind it.  The reality for the rest of us is being an entrepreneur is a life-long commitment, its a way of life, its a way of thinking.  Success comes through hard work and customer focus, and its not some crazy priced exit, rather the satisfaction of building a service and company that you feel proud to be part of.  That’s why for me, Sammy is a real entrepreneur.

Sammy’s passion is marketing, prior to Speak2leads he ran several marketing consultancies.  Through that work he saw in some of his clients a huge waste of customer leads left to age to uselessness, when immediate action is required.

I interview Sammy last year for a weblog on “Start-up to Watch: Speak2Leads, “Press 2 to Triple your Sales!”  Speak2Leads’ proposition is simple, call every Internet lead immediately, and if you don’t connect on the first attempt, call again up to 5 more times at optimum intervals. There is a fine line between being persistent and annoying.

A Kellogg study on Lead Response Management (LRM) revealed the odds of connecting with a lead increases by 100 times if attempted within 5 minutes versus 30 minutes after the lead is generated. And the odds of converting a lead if called in 5 minutes versus 30 minutes increases by 21 times. 78% of all sales go to the first company to return a prospect’s call. Using Speak2Leads can double and in some cases triple a company’s sales. The focus of the business is Lead Response Management (LRM), and a core technology is telephony in sales people talking to leads at the right time for the lead, hence their use of Telecom APIs so Speak2Leads can focus on delivering the best LRM service to its customers.

How did you get involved in Telecom App Development?

Completely by accident.  My marketing business was going well, and generating lots of internet leads for my clients.  But I was frustrated by the number of leads I generated that simply went to waste.  Potential customers were simply not being followed up on in a timely manner if at all.  Leads were either left too long before follow-up, or tried once and given up on.  Given the money and effort that goes into generating leads, even wasting one lead is a crying shame.

This waste drove me to create Speak2leads and make LRM a core and automated business process.  We investigated lots of ways to automate LRM, and once we discovered Telecom APIs, we knew we’d found the answer to our technology problems.  Making calls between sales people and leads is a simple script, and it just works.We have been doing new feature releases every 4-6 weeks for four years now and we have a big dev pipeline full of new features we are eager to finish.

The need to communicate is part of the basic human condition, we need to talk, especially when we’re thinking about a high value purchases, or a purchase that will cost us significant time and effort, e.g. education courses.  The need to talk to people is never going away, no matter how many smartphones you have in your pocket.

What are you hoping to get out of TADHack?

Two things, firstly, seeing all the hacks other developers will create.  It is amazing what you can do with Telecom APIs, we’re constantly finding new applications of them to LRM.  Seeing what other people will create is really exciting.  We need to make many more people aware of what Telecom APIs can do for your business.  They’re easy, anyone can use them, its a simple script.

Secondly, promotion, we want the world to know about Speak2leads, and TADHack will be a great event to demonstrate some hacks around our core service.  Its amazing an event like TADHack has not happened before, its sorely needed to show the world the potential of Telecom APIs, and we’re proud to be part of TADHack.