Getting prospective customers to answer sales calls and texts can seem like a daunting task. According to a 2020 LinkedIn report, nearly 69% of people accepted a call from a new salesperson in the previous year, but it took an average of 18 calls to connect with a buyer. It’s no surprise — few people appreciate unsolicited pitches. But some argue that cold calling can be successful if approached in the right way.
One of those people is Alex Levin, CEO and co-founder of New York City-based Regal.io. Together with Rebecca Green, he launched Regal to build a tech stack for calls and messages delivered to customers — as well as sales and marketing teams — to deliver a better outbound calling experience.
“Later [our] “In my experience building the phone sales team at Angi on traditional omnichannel contact center software, I realized there was massive underinvestment in outbound calling technology, which limited how sales and marketing teams could use the channel,” Levine told Technology Flow via email. Prior to Angie, Levin worked as a product manager at Thomson Reuters, while Greene was a senior product manager on Amazon’s digital music team. “We founded Regal to build an entirely new tech stack [calls] It … gives brands the tools to drive more revenue despite this critical channel.”
Investors seem to believe in the vision. Regal today closed a $38.5 million Series A funding round with $350 million post-money, led by Emergence Capital and led by Founder Collective, Homebrew, Flex Capital, Inspired Capital and Operator Collective. The new cash boosts Regal’s total capital to $42.1 million and will be put toward go-to-market and engineering initiatives as well as hiring, Levin said.
Regal offers a dashboard with call and text messaging tools, information on where customers are in the sales pipeline and areas of friction. “Journey Builder” allows users to trigger calls and texts to “high-intent” buyers on specific occasions; The Platform determines intent based on data such as customer website usage, customer relationship management data and other general behavioral information. Another feature, Branded Caller ID, changes caller ID on cell phones from an unknown number to a brand name so customers know who is calling.
“Every digital brand uses a stack of one-way marketing automation tools and tries to remarket to ‘abandoned’ customers, and they’re seeing diminishing returns in those one-way channels,” Levine said. “The key to high conversions is conversations. Regal’s solution leverages event-based customer engagement to drive conversation with knowledgeable people at key moments – the personal touch for the digital marketing era.
In a sign that Regal’s vision is resonating with at least some customers, the platform now delivers more than one million conversations a month for brands like Angi (formerly Angie’s List), Career Karma, Fidelity Life and SoFi. The startup’s customer base now includes more than 100 marketing and sales teams.
It’s definitely an impressive momentum. This trick holds it in the face of competition from companies like Five9, Genesis, TalkDesk, Twilio and Plivo – many of which have millions or even billions in financing behind them. Levine argues that Regal’s advantage is that it focuses on a niche that others largely miss, namely business-to-consumer businesses that sell online and require human intervention to convert a consumer when they leave the cart or purchase flow.
“Especially in a downturn, companies are focused on converting more prospects to their site. This focus is positive for us because it’s a part of the funnel that we positively impact,” Levine said. Regal plans to double its 80-person headcount in the next 12 months, he added.