ENGAGE 2019 conference aims to help Chicago tech companies boost cohesion and profits

Representatives from tech companies across the Windy City will come together on November 14 for ENGAGE 2019, an inaugural conference aimed at helping them succeed with help from competitors in the industry.

ENGAGE 2019 is expected to draw people who have “a revenue-generating role within a B2B technology company," according to Matt Green, Chief Revenue Officer of Sales Assembly, the group organizing the event. That includes people who work in sales, customer success, account management and marketing leaders.

Green said Sales Assembly does approximately 70 events every year for a community of more than 100 Chicago-based B2B technology companies. Some of their largest members include Glassdoor, UpWork and LinkedIn.

What separates ENGAGE 2019 from the other events Sales Assembly has done is that it is specifically dedicated to the sales and marketing leadership of the city’s B2B technology community.

“While there are conventions and gatherings and conferences out there, what makes us different is that we’re hyper-focused on a very specific niche, which is B2B tech sales and marketing teams, and we’re hyper-focused here in Chicago,” Green said.

Topics that will be discussed include ways to “shorten sales cycles, increase win rates and better drive revenue from existing logos,” according to the event’s website. Other topics include ABM Readiness and Tactics, Customer Marketing as the Future of Revenue Growth, as well as a panel discussion of Revenue Growth Through Strategic Collaboration.

Bringing together its membership has multiple purposes, according to Green. In addition to the education opportunities, Green said networking is also a key part of the event and beneficial to all attendees.

“Within the industry, as the walls between sales teams and marketing teams continue to erode or just collapse completely, these B2B technology organizations, they’re not looking at these teams in silos anymore,” Green said. “They’re not looking at them as the sales team, or as the marketing team, they’re looking at both of these teams holistically as the revenue team.”

“We’ve heard feedback from our community that we need to provide more resources and training and development for not only the sales leaders and sales teams, which is traditionally our bread and butter, but also the marketing leaders, and the marketing teams, and the customer success leaders, and customer success teams,” Green said.  

Panelists for the closing session include Eric Gilpin, Senior Vice President of Enterprise Sales at Upwork; Viji Davis, Senior Vice President of Marketing at DialogTech; Ed Vesely, Chief Marketing Officer at PROLIFIQ; and Helen Calvin, Chief Revenue Officer at Jellyvision. The discussion will be moderated by CityBase Chief Customer Officer Liz Fischer.

While there may be other B2B technology companies around the world, Green said Chicago is a unique place for the field, which makes events like this something special.

“There’s a sense of community ... we believe (it) is something you don’t find in other markets," Green said, referring to competitors coming together to help one another. 

"There’s still little if any hesitation in these competitive companies sharing best practices or sharing learnings with each other for the benefit of the entire ecosystem as a whole," he said.

Green said Sales Assembly has added a new member to its community roughly every other week during its two-year existence and is still looking to grow exclusively in the Chicago area. The goal, according to Green, is to have approximately 130 members by the end of 2020.

Registration is still open for ENGAGE 2019, which will be held at Sprout Social.

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