GTM 84: Outbound Isn’t Dead: This is How to Reach the Inbox with Stephen Hakami

Stephen Hakami is the Founder and CEO of Wiza – the most accurate way to find verified contact information for B2B prospects. Stephen started the company in 2019 after a sales career of being frustrated with bad data, and set out to build a prospecting tool that’s powered by live LinkedIn data.

Discussed in this Episode:

  • The frustration with bad data and the inspiration behind building Wiza.
  • The importance of email deliverability and strategies for improving it.
  • The recent acquisition of Drift by Salesloft and the topic of consolidation in the sales tech stack.
  • Stephen’s journey from sales to CEO, highlighting the value of creative prospecting. 
  • The hardest lesson Stephen learned in sales.
  • Effective tactics of cold email and deliverability.

Highlights:

(3:27) Strategies for email deliverability.

(08:01) The journey from sales to entrepreneurship.

(11:06) Sales technology and the consolidation.

(20:41) Strategies for effective cold emails.

(25:49) Understanding your competitors.

(27:38) The importance of being a true consultant.

(28:32) Redefining your competitors.

(31:55) One thing revenue leaders believe to be true that Stephen thinks is bull$***.

(34:26) One thing that is working for Stephen/Wiza in go-to-market right now.

Guest Speaker Links (Stephen Hakami):
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/stephen-hakami-5babb21b0/
Website: www.wiza.co/

Host Speaker Links (Scott Barker):
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/ssbarker/
Newsletter: thegtmnewsletter.substack.com/

Sponsor:
Today’s episode is sponsored by The ELG Conference, presented by Crossbeam and The ELG Alliance. The smartest companies are embracing Ecosystem-Led Growth, or ELG.

Join us at the gorgeous Proper Hotel in Austin on May 15-16 and hear how the top SaaS companies are leveraging partner ecosystems in their GTM motions aka Ecosystem-Led Growth. Early-bird tickets expire next week.

What you’ll get at ELG Con:

  • Case studies from companies like Datadog, Cloudera, and more.
  • A chance to tour (and maybe even race on?) Austin’s F1 track.
  • Candid, off-the-record conversations — no recordings here.
  • A highly curated group of 200 GTM leaders, 85% director level and above across Sales, Marketing, and Partnerships.

Claim your tickets today, including a limited number of special two-for-the-price-of-one tickets.

The GTM Podcast
Don’t miss The GTM Podcast dropping every Tuesday discussing true stories and experiences including trials and tribulations in the Go-To-Market world.

Before helping found GTMfund, Scott spent 4 years at Outreach as Director of Strategic Engagement. He was in charge of aligning key relationships with VCs, BoDs, ecosystem partners and community members to drive revenue and strategic initiatives across Outreach. Scott initially ran revenue/partnerships for Sales Hacker (which was acquired by Outreach in 2018). Prior to Sales Hacker, he led and built outbound Business Development teams at Payfirma and MediaValet. Scott also advises for a number of high growth start-ups and is the host/author of The GTM Podcast and The GTM Newsletter. At GTMfund, Scott leads all fundraising efforts and runs the media arm of the firm. He’s also responsible for assessing investments, team management, LP/community relationships and GTM support for founders.

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