Careers at ClearSlide
ClearSlide’s mission is to power the most valuable, genuine business conversations with a single, integrated platform.
Al Lieb and Jim Benton were employees at Evite.com (co-founded by the former) who had known each other for 15 years. In 2009 they were in the process of selling media products to advertisers, which involved calling and trying to pitch their offerings within 5 minutes. They found that the set-up did not allow them to tell their story in a compelling fashion. Consequently, they created ClearSlide, which is a sales engagement platform that enables users to share content and sales materials via email links or their viewer’s link (a “live pitch“). They began using the product with customers and the response was highly positive, with many wanting to know more about the presentation tool they were using.
The two realized that they had a marketable offering, and decided to launch it as a company targeted at sales and marketing teams. Its initial name was ShieldMedia, but they soon changed it to ClearSlide. For nine months they dedicated themselves to building the platform and recruiting early customers (mostly Heads of Sales) to provide feedback. At the end of that period they hired their first set of employees and set about trying to raise external funding.
They were highly successful in the latter effort – in 2011 they raised $11 million; in 2012 they raised $28 million in a round lead by Bessemer Venture Partners; and in 2014 they raised $50 million in a round led by Social Capital, for a total of $89 million. With this help ClearSlide’s customer base grew to thousands, and now includes prominent names such as Thomson Reuters, LinkedIn, SurveyMonkey, Comcast, and Rackspace.
Benefits at ClearSlide
Business model of ClearSlide
ClearSlide serves two customer segments with slightly varying needs: Individuals to whom it offers “Pro” and “Group” packages, and Businesses to whom it offers “Enterprise” and “Ultimate” packages. Despite this segmentation its CEO indicates that it is most heavily focused on its enterprise users.
ClearSlide offers three primary value propositions: convenience, performance, and brand/status.
The company’s product simplifies sales team presentations to prospects by offering a variety of communication formats, including email plugins and alerts, mobile apps, web-based presentations, and cross-company sales content. This wide mix allows team members to be more productive.
The company’s product enables sales leaders to gain insight into the success of a team presentation in progress by providing real-time analytics and visibility. Specific information obtained includes the type of content that is most effective with audiences, and when exactly a prospect opened a presentation. This knowledge helps leaders to improve presentations, which in turns enhances team performance and increases customer engagement, making a sale more likely.
Lastly, ClearSlide has gained a positive reputation in the sales technology space due to its many client success stories, which are posted on its website. Case studies listed include The Economist, BuzzFeed, Shazam, LexisNexis, and Starwood Hotels and Restaurants.
ClearSlide’s main channel is its website, through which it promotes its services. It also markets its offerings through the frequent hosting of live webinars.
In addition, the company encourages interested parties to contact it via phone, e-mail, or social media.
ClearSlide’s customer relationship is primarily of a personal assistance nature. In addition to its 24/7 e-mail, phone, and social network support options, the company offers consultation services and training and learning services. These are available via phone, online, or in-person.
That said, there is also a strong self-service component – ClearSlide’s website has a “Resources” section featuring guides, webinars, white papers, case studies, and videos that customers can use to help themselves.
ClearSlide’s staff manufactures its software and then works to acquire customers for the purchase of its products.
ClearSlide is partnered with the American Association of Inside Sales Professionals (AA-ISP). The company is a Platinum Underwriter for the organization, which has more than 10,000 individual members representing more than 3,000 companies in the United States and globally.
As part of its role, it co-sponsors conferences held throughout the year, where its duties include giving presentations, participating in panel discussions, and providing general administrative support.
ClearSlide’s main resource is its proprietary software system. It also depends heavily on its human resources, particularly its sales team, which is spread across three offices, and its technology team, which features many different types of developers.
As a relatively new start-up, ClearSlide also relies on the group of investors through which it has raised millions in funding.
ClearSlide has a value-driven structure, offering value through significant personal assistance. Its biggest cost drivers are sales/marketing and product development expenses, both fixed costs; sales and technology employees represent its biggest teams, each accounting for 40% of its workforce. Another major expense driver is customer support/operations expenses.
ClearSlide charges subscription fees for the use of its platform. It offers the following pricing tiers, categorized by customer segment:
- Individual (Pro): $35 per user/per month (billed annually)
- Individual (Group): $65 per user/per month (billed annually)
- Business (Enterprise): $95 per user/per month (billed annually)
- Business (Ultimate): $125 per user/per month (billed annually)
Customers are given the option of making an annual or multi-year commitment.
info: Dustin earned an MBA from the Yale School of Management and a B.S. in Economics from the University of California. He previously served as ClearSlide’s COO, and other past positions include lead marketing roles at DocuSign and Microsoft.
info: Jeff earned a B.A. in Speech Communications, Sales and Marketing from California State University, Northridge. He has over 20 years of technology leadership experience building sales teams. He leads all aspects of Sales and Client Services.
info: Lawrence holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Engineering and Applied Mathematics from Harvey Mudd College. He previously worked at Symantec. He oversees ClearSlide's engineering efforts, including site operations, sales engineering, and IT support.
info: Raj earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley. He previously served in VP roles at Cisco Systems. He leads Product and User Experience strategy and execution at ClearSlide.
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