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Lunar Adds 25-Year Software Development and Enterprise IT Veteran to Executive Team

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Former EA Sports global technology director, IBM software engineer joins SaaS product and Salesforce consulting company

ORLANDO, Fla. – May 15, 2019Lunar, a Salesforce consulting and SaaS technology company that automates and integrates technology to help companies get more out of their existing sales and marketing, welcomes Tim Platt to its team as executive VP of technology. In his role, Platt serves as a mentor for Lunar’s evolving software development team, as well as providing architecture input, leading security and compliance efforts and providing cloud technology leadership.

Lunar began as the operations team at Launch That, a digital marketing company that creates, develops and markets internet-centric corporate brands. Because of its success in serving external businesses, Lunar spun off from Launch That in January 2019. Most recently, Lunar released its flagship SaaS application, Uplink, a text messaging and voice communication platform that integrates with Salesforce. Uplink streamlines the workflow of salespeople, provides visibility into workplace communications and helps retain revenue for organizations when a salesperson leaves the company.

“I began working with the Lunar team as an outside consultant while they were still a division of Launch That. The dynamics of the team and the efficiencies they provided their clients made it clear to me that Lunar was onto something big,” said Tim Platt. “I’m excited to bring the experience I have to the team and help build Lunar to everything it can be.”

Platt began his career at IBM in 1993, serving as a software engineer before moving into roles at Cardinal Health, Inc., a pharmaceutical distribution company, and VisualGov Solutions, where he developed websites for payment of property tax obligations. For 10 years, Platt worked with EA Sports as development manager, then director of global technology solutions service delivery for applications and infrastructure. In 2014, Platt left EA Sports to launch Virtual Operations, a company that plans, designs and implements business solutions utilizing Microsoft Azure and open source technologies.

“One of the values and experiences we look for when selecting someone to join our team is that of an entrepreneur. Not only does Tim have the high-level experience we were looking for in a VP of technology, but he also started his own business, Virtual Operations, that continues to be successful with Tim as part-owner,” said Jon Robinson, president at Lunar. “Tim’s background will help push Lunar into its next stage of growth.”

To learn more about Lunar, visit https://www.belunar.com.

About Lunar

Lunar automates and integrates technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing. Focused on revolutionizing the way businesses function through technology, Lunar provides expertise in CRM, marketing automation, platform integration and application development to produce the most efficient processes to meet client needs. Lunar combines consulting services with its own SaaS products, such as Uplink, a communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce. Guided by its core value of “Expect the Moon,” Lunar has built a company culture that exceeds and defies expectations, and empowers both employees and customers with knowledge and tools to succeed. For more information, please visit https://www.belunar.com.

Media Contact
Amber Richards
Uproar PR for Lunar
arichards@uproarpr.com
(321) 236-0102, x237

cellhone user image for California privacy law post

Top 5 Things to Know About the California Privacy Act

Back in March 2018, consumers were appalled to learn that over 50 million people were affected by the data breach of Cambridge Analytica. The data was collected and exploited through a simple personality quiz on Facebook. Once this was released, it was apparent that personal information was more accessible than ever to obtain encouraging the […]

SaaStr Annual Conference 2019

What We Learned at SaaStr Annual 2019

SaaStr Annual is a must-attend event for any SaaS business. It’s not just the place to learn cutting-edge business techniques in cloud technology — it’s also the perfect event to connect with like-minded professionals using networking tools such as Braindates and Brella. In this post, we’ll reveal the most useful tips we learned while we […]

    Launch That to Spin Off Lunar Division for Consulting and Technology

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    Digital marketing firm will raise the profile of Lunar, which has two new SaaS products, consulting for high-profile clients, and continued growth on the horizon

    ORLANDO, Fla. – Feb. 18, 2019 – Spurred by the desire to help companies implement Salesforce practices, Launch That, LLC has spun off its Lunar division into a separate business.

    The move was effective Jan. 1, 2019.

    Lunar began as an operational team for Launch That, a digital marketing company that creates, develops and markets internet-centric corporate brands. While servicing Launch That’s marketing projects, the operations team assisted partners in streamlining internal business processes, including the implementation of Salesforce.

    The team was renamed Lunar in 2017 and began focusing on external client development in early 2018. The decision to establish Lunar stems from its early business development success and the desire to provide a unique mission and vision separate from Launch That.

    “We’ve recognized the unique services and products Lunar offers, and believe there is room for continued success,” Launch That CEO Gene Apelado said. “This spin-off is a natural part of Lunar’s evolution and growth. The distinction of Lunar and Launch That will give both companies the freedom and flexibility to grow and succeed in a manner best-suited to them.”

    Lunar has two SaaS products: Uplink, a text-messaging sales application and Shuttle, software for lead-distribution management. Uplink recently won the Demo Jam award at Florida Dreamin’ – a community-organized event that provides sessions, speakers and hands-on workshops -, for the Salesforce application that impressed convention attendees the most. The communication tool lets sales teams text customers directly from their phone’s messaging app and visualize the messages in Salesforce.

    By customizing and optimizing Salesforce, Lunar’s consulting services save businesses time and money by providing insight into sales data and customer behavior. Lunar is a Salesforce registered consulting partner with clients nationwide, with a particular focus on companies in the Orlando area.

    Lunar recently landed agreements with multiple sports-related clients, demonstrating its ability to compete in the market and accelerating the opportunity to excel as a standalone company.

    “We’re incredibly proud of the work we’ve put forth and the confidence our ownership group has in our efforts,” Lunar President Jon Robinson said. “As our own separate entity, Lunar can flourish in its own right. We’re looking forward to another year of innovation as we redefine what it means to ‘Expect the Moon.’ ”

    Launch That and Lunar will function as collaborative peers under common ownership. Formerly known as AMAG, Launch That was born in 2007 as a privately-held digital marketing company focused on lead-generation. The company’s core strengths are search engine optimization, search engine marketing (pay-per-click advertising), web development and design, content marketing and social media marketing. Among the brands it cultivated are Drugwatch.com, Debt.org, Annuity.org and DrugRehab.com. Launch That sold Debt.org in 2014.

    Launch That and Lunar will be the lead tenants in a redeveloped, 105-year-old building on the southeast corner of Orange and Central avenues in the heart of Orlando’s downtown.

    Salesforce and others are trademarks of salesforce.com, inc.

    ABOUT LUNAR

    Lunar automates and integrates technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing. Focused on revolutionizing the way businesses function through technology, Lunar provides expertise in CRM, marketing automation, platform integration and application development to produce the most efficient processes to meet client needs. Combining consulting with its own SaaS products – Shuttle, a user-friendly lead collection, user tracking, and lead distribution software, and Uplink, a communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce – Lunar fills the growing void between marketing, sales and technology. Guided by its core value of “Expect the Moon,” Lunar has built a company culture that exceeds and defies expectations, and empowers both employees and customers with knowledge and tools to succeed. For more information, please visit https://www.belunar.com.

    ABOUT LAUNCH THAT

    Launch That, LLC is a recognized national leader in digital marketing, specializing in search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, content marketing, social media marketing, website design and web development. It markets websites in highly competitive industries, parlaying online strategies that turn website visitors into customers for businesses. Launch That is privately held and has its headquarters in downtown Orlando. For more information about Launch That, visit https://www.launchthat.com

    Media Contact
    Frank Wolff
    Uproar PR for Lunar
    fwolff@uproarpr.com
    (321) 236-0102, x237

    Lunar Adds 25-Year Software Development and Enterprise IT Veteran to Executive Team

    Former EA Sports global technology director, IBM software engineer joins SaaS product and Salesforce consulting company ORLANDO, Fla. – May 15, 2019 – Lunar, a Salesforce consulting and SaaS technology company that automates and integrates technology to help companies get more out of their existing sales and marketing, welcomes Tim Platt to its team as […]

    Florida Dreamin Team and Booth

    4 Event Highlights from Florida Dreamin’ 2018

    Florida is home to a thriving community of Salesforce evangelists. Lucky for us, the amazing and helpful Florida Dreamin’ team put together an event that is one we won’t forget! It offered the perfect atmosphere to connect with other trailblazers, learn about new products, and understand how to tailor customer experiences. From new tools to […]

      Lunar Study finds 92% of Consumers Prefer Texting and Email Communication to Phone Calls

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      Texting is a widely accepted and expected form of business communication, but the method is underutilized

      ORLANDO, Fla. – April 17, 2019 – A new consumer survey shows a missed opportunity for businesses: while the majority of people approve of receiving text messages from businesses and salespeople, only 60% have recently received communications from businesses in this way. Additionally, only 8% of people would prefer a call upon first direct contact from a business, with the trend holding up regardless of age.

      The results were released as part of a Sales Communication Survey from Lunar, a Salesforce consulting and SaaS technology company dedicated to automating and integrating technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing.

      The results found that regardless of age demographic, the voicemail is dead – meaning it’s not just millennials who are busy killing the old standards.

      The survey highlights include:

      • 92% of people prefer texts or emails from a business or salesperson
      • 94% of people find voicemail to the be the least convenient way to communicate
      • No matter the age demographic, most consumers approve of receiving texts from businesses, but only 60% had received one in the last three months
      • People aged 45-60 preferred texts to other forms of communication at a higher rate than those aged 18-29
      • Respondents 30 and older were more likely to have received a text from a business than their younger adult counterparts

      “Our mobile devices live even less in our pockets and more now as an extension of our hands,” said Jon Robinson, president at Lunar. “The information we uncovered in our research confirms that texting is widely accepted as a way for businesses to communicate regardless of customer demographics, but businesses are underutilizing it – especially in a P2P capacity.”

      Lunar recently developed Uplink, the first and only communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce automatically without downloading a third-party app. While other tools restrict texting communications to the desktop, Uplink automatically recognizes business-related text messages on a user’s device and logs them in Salesforce. Organizations can then own the exchanges between their employees and customers while giving time and convenience back to the salesperson.

      “Uplink allows salespeople to reach consumers where they are – their phones. We’re working in a data-driven world, and ensuring the valuable conversations between salespeople and their customers and prospects are logged and able to be actioned off of will drive organizations to greater levels of efficiency,” said Robinson.

      To learn more about Lunar, visit https://www.belunar.com.

      About Lunar

      Lunar automates and integrates technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing. Focused on revolutionizing the way businesses function through technology, Lunar provides expertise in CRM, marketing automation, platform integration and application development to produce the most efficient processes to meet client needs. Lunar combines consulting services with its own SaaS products, such as Uplink, a communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce. Guided by its core value of “Expect the Moon,” Lunar has built a company culture that exceeds and defies expectations, and empowers both employees and customers with knowledge and tools to succeed. For more information, please visit https://www.belunar.com.

      Media Contact
      Amber Richards
      Uproar PR for Lunar
      arichards@uproarpr.com
      (321) 236-0102, x237

      cellhone user image for California privacy law post

      Top 5 Things to Know About the California Privacy Act

      Back in March 2018, consumers were appalled to learn that over 50 million people were affected by the data breach of Cambridge Analytica. The data was collected and exploited through a simple personality quiz on Facebook. Once this was released, it was apparent that personal information was more accessible than ever to obtain encouraging the […]

      Invoca Summit Delight Your Customers Blog Post image

      How to Delight Your Customers: Lessons from Invoca Summit

      It is no surprise that meeting customers needs and wants is crucial for every business. But how are you doing this? We, at Lunar, learned a great deal about creating and delivering delightful experiences at the Invoca Summit last week. This post is inspired by all of the sessions and keynote speakers this year. “All […]

        Lunar and Launch That Open New Office in One South Orange Building

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        Tech and marketing companies now occupy dream office spaces on second and third floors of renovated 106-year-old building

        ORLANDO, Fla. – March 25, 2019Launch That and Lunar announce the opening of their new shared office in the One Orange Development, LLC-owned building One South Orange, located at 1 S. Orange Ave. in downtown Orlando.

        Launch That is a digital marketing company that creates, develops and markets internet-centric corporate brands. Lunar is a Salesforce consulting and SaaS technology company dedicated to automating and integrating technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing.

        Lunar and Launch That’s space in the building, totaling 13,000 square feet on the second floor and about 7,000 square feet on the third floor, features modern, eye-catching office space while maintaining the historic brick and architectural details from the original building’s design. The shared office includes:

        • A 2,000 square-foot break room, which includes espresso and soda machines and a snack bar
        • A video game area within the break room, including Xbox consoles and two large-screen TVs
        • A separate rec room with air hockey, shuffleboard and a ping pong table

        “We’ve built a company culture at Launch That that inspires our employees and our customers to dream beyond what they thought was possible,” said Launch That CEO Gene Apelado. “We’re proud to have developed an epic space for our team that emphasizes creativity, ingenuity and work-life balance.”

        “This new office space allows us to easily access common resources and strategize and socialize with our peers,” said Lunar President Jon Robinson. “We’re looking forward to building our brand in the heart of Orlando’s downtown, especially as we expand and advance Lunar’s SaaS products and contribute to Orlando’s growing tech scene.”

        Lunar and Launch That will host a grand opening event for their partners and clients on Thursday, March 28.

        One Orange Development, LLC bought the now 106-year-old building in 2017, and plans to fill the five-story, 84,000 square-foot building’s office space with other creative and tech entrepreneurs. The first floor of the retail space was recently leased to Taco Bell Cantina, a deal brokered by JLL. JLL represents One Orange Development, LLC on the remaining retail and office space available for lease.

        The architectural and design consulting of the retail portion of the building is being handled by Toby Walker of Walker Design. The office building design has been handled by Gloria Van Dusen of Campbell Van Dusen, and the construction of both projects is being done by Hanson Construction, which are all located in downtown Orlando.

        For more information about Launch That, visit https://www.launchthat.com.

        For more information about Lunar, visit https://www.belunar.com.

        About Lunar

        Lunar automates and integrates technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing. Focused on revolutionizing the way businesses function through technology, Lunar provides expertise in CRM, marketing automation, platform integration and application development to produce the most efficient processes to meet client needs. Lunar combines consulting services with its own SaaS products, such as Uplink, a communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce. Guided by its core value of “Expect the Moon,” Lunar has built a company culture that exceeds and defies expectations, and empowers both employees and customers with knowledge and tools to succeed. For more information, please visit https://www.belunar.com.

        About Launch That

        Launch That, LLC is a recognized national leader in digital marketing, specializing in search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, content marketing, social media marketing, website design, and web development. Combining sleek designs, robust content and expert functionality with smart and efficient strategies, it markets websites in highly competitive industries, turning website visitors into customers. Launch That is privately held and has its headquarters in downtown Orlando. For more information about Launch That, please visit https://www.launchthat.com

        Media Contact
        Amber Richards
        Uproar PR for Lunar
        arichards@uproarpr.com
        (321) 236-0102, x237

        image of team at Lunar Weekly meeting

        Expect the Moon: Our Lunar Culture

        At Lunar, we follow the creed “Expect the Moon” meaning we consistently deliver work that exceeds expectations and goes above and beyond for our clients. Producing high-level work requires a blend of top talent with an organizational culture that fosters creativity and drives inventiveness. Communication We establish open communication and collaboration from the get-go by […]

        SaaStr Annual Conference 2019

        What We Learned at SaaStr Annual 2019

        SaaStr Annual is a must-attend event for any SaaS business. It’s not just the place to learn cutting-edge business techniques in cloud technology — it’s also the perfect event to connect with like-minded professionals using networking tools such as Braindates and Brella. In this post, we’ll reveal the most useful tips we learned while we […]

          Lunar Joins Twilio Build, the Twilio Partner Program

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          Lunar partners with Twilio to fuel the future of communications with SaaS product Uplink

          ORLANDO, Fla. – April 9, 2019Lunar, a Salesforce consulting and SaaS technology company dedicated to automating and integrating technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing, today announces it has joined Twilio Build, a partner program designed from the ground up with an API-first, developer-first approach. Customers trust Twilio’s growing ecosystem of best-in-class partners to deliver applications and consulting expertise across nearly every location, industry and market.

          As part of Twilio Build, Lunar built Uplink, using Twilio’s programmable SMS and programmable voice. Uplink is a communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce without downloading a third-party app.

          “Twilio’s programmable SMS had the features we needed to build quickly and scale to production. Tested phone numbers, text delivery intelligence and smart content handling features made the process incredibly smooth, and programmable voice allows Uplink to make, receive and monitor calls with ease,” said Jon Robinson, president at Lunar. “The Twilio Build program is helping us create the future of communications, and we’re proud to be a Technology Builder.”

          Historically, companies have been challenged by SaaS models that are difficult to customize and on-premises models that are costly and slow to deploy,” said Chetan Chaudhary, global VP of partners at Twilio. “Twilio’s platform empowers consulting partners to build custom, scalable communications solutions for their customers without limits, allowing them to see value from their implementations faster than ever before. The Twilio platform is tailor-made for companies like Lunar that are defining the future, supported by our partner program Build that includes all they need to transform their business.”

          Twilio Build’s ecosystem of partners offers customers both packaged applications and consulting expertise that make it possible for any customer to innovate with Twilio regardless of region, industry, business model or development resources. Twilio Build partners benefit from:

          • Partner-specific business models – Lead sharing, co-selling and reselling introduce new revenue streams for organizations.
          • Certification Program – Digital training and certification programs empower partners to be Twilio experts. Dedicated partner team provides consulting partners role-based certification and continued support as they grow their businesses.
          • Twilio Build Marketplace – A digital showcase provides partners the opportunity to present offerings to Twilio’s more than 50,000 existing customers and an unlimited number of potential new customers who can now innovate with Twilio through Twilio Build.
          • Technology Early Access Program – Early access to Twilio’s product roadmap gives partners the opportunity to be the first certified providers of Twilio’s contact center application platform, Flex, as well as future innovations from Twilio.

          To learn more, visit https://www.twilio.com/partner-solutions.

          To learn more about Lunar, visit https://www.belunar.com.

          About Twilio

          More than 2 million developers around the world have used Twilio to unlock the magic of communications to improve any human experience. Twilio has democratized communications channels like voice, text, chat, and video by virtualizing the world’s telecommunications infrastructure through APIs that are simple enough for any developer to use, yet robust enough to power the world’s most demanding applications. By making communications a part of every software developer’s toolkit, Twilio is enabling innovators across every industry — from emerging leaders to the world’s largest organizations — to reinvent how companies engage with their customers.

          About Lunar

          Lunar automates and integrates technology to get more out of a business’s existing sales and marketing. Focused on revolutionizing the way businesses function through technology, Lunar provides expertise in CRM, marketing automation, platform integration and application development to produce the most efficient processes to meet client needs. Lunar combines consulting services with its own SaaS products, such as Uplink, a communication tool that allows sales teams to reach customers directly from their phone’s text messaging app and visualize conversations in Salesforce. Guided by its core value of “Expect the Moon,” Lunar has built a company culture that exceeds and defies expectations, and empowers both employees and customers with knowledge and tools to succeed. For more information, please visit https://www.belunar.com.

          Media Contact
          Amber Richards
          Uproar PR for Lunar
          arichards@uproarpr.com
          (321) 236-0102, x237


          Lunar Study finds 92% of Consumers Prefer Texting and Email Communication to Phone Calls

          Texting is a widely accepted and expected form of business communication, but the method is underutilized ORLANDO, Fla. – April 17, 2019 – A new consumer survey shows a missed opportunity for businesses: while the majority of people approve of receiving text messages from businesses and salespeople, only 60% have recently received communications from businesses […]

          SaaStr Annual Conference 2019

          What We Learned at SaaStr Annual 2019

          SaaStr Annual is a must-attend event for any SaaS business. It’s not just the place to learn cutting-edge business techniques in cloud technology — it’s also the perfect event to connect with like-minded professionals using networking tools such as Braindates and Brella. In this post, we’ll reveal the most useful tips we learned while we […]

            How Customizing Salesforce Can Solve Your Business Needs

            Older Posts »

            Salesforce enables all types of companies regardless of size or industry to develop a clearer understanding of their prospect and customer data, and allows for streamlining of various corporate processes. While the benefits of utilizing Salesforce are clear, what isn’t so defined is the difference between businesses customizing Salesforce and “configuring” the platform to fit their unique needs.

            The two terms may be similar from definition standpoint, but in the context of Salesforce, they mean vastly different functions. In simple terms:

            • Configuring Salesforce is when applications (the arrangement of objects/fields, workflows, email templates, etc.) are developed within the system
            • Customizing Salesforce involves manipulating the coding of these apps to write specific functions (Apex Classes, Visualforce Emails, third-party system integrations, etc).

            Businesses can adopt “out-of-the-box” Salesforce and gain simple CRM functionality, but there’s so much more under the hood of the CRM that’s just waiting to be unlocked through customization. Now that we have an understanding of these two words as they relate to Salesforce, let’s find out more about the benefits of customizing Salesforce.

            Why Customize Salesforce?

            The technical requirements to configure Salesforce may enable some companies to complete this process themselves, but the same can’t always be said for customizing the CRM platform, which demands more technical proficiency and experience. But when successful, customization opens a new world of efficiency, enabling companies, regardless of size, industry, and employee needs, to leverage the tool to match their own specifications.

            At a macro level, some examples of how businesses can customize Salesforce include:

            • Creating more user-friendly applications and a navigable user interface to achieve faster end-user adoption
            • Facilitating more efficient sales processes through automation
            • Using custom objects and records to store information specific to a company’s industry
            • Integrating Salesforce with other existing business systems and processes, both homegrown and “off the shelf”
            • Building custom mobile interfaces for field employees so that data and process from the field sync directly with “back office” systems

            These examples are just scratching the surface of Salesforce’s customizations. Although customizations won’t be the same on a company-by-company basis, due to reliance on different third-party systems between each business, successful Salesforce customizations can deliver unique functions to specific organizations across many different industries such as:

            • Giving UMA Solar, a residential and commercial solar heating provider and a Lunar customer, the insight into where leads are coming from and the ability to track sales reps’ performance to determine if they’re hitting their quota numbers in near real time.
            • Providing Trucks & Parts, a seller of used garbage, concrete mixer, and roll-off trucks, a way to streamline its quoting process by using Conga Composer to automatically ask only the necessary questions of clients. With help from Lunar, the company’s clients can easily sign proposals through Conga Sign, resulting in a significant decrease in the time required to generate and process these proposals.
            • Enabling Mount Sinai Health System to gain full visibility into their patients’ data to deliver more personalized care coordination for vulnerable populations in New York City. The health provider established a real-time mobile coordination program that provides case managers, social workers, doctors, and physical therapists with a complete view into patients’ health needs. By 2022, Mount Sinai Health System hopes Salesforce will help reduce avoidable hospital use in the city by 25%.
            • Allowing Adidas to create a digital interface that delivers more customized shopping journeys to consumers, enabling customers to create custom products based on their preferences. By leveraging Salesforce, the company’s e-commerce sales increased 59% in 2016 compared to the previous year.
            • Empowering U.S. Bank to utilize a unified platform across its payments, investments, mortgages, and banking divisions to strengthen customer relationships, fueling the company’s lead conversion growth by 2.35x.
            • Letting Farmers Insurance create a first notice of loss (FONL) process for insurance claims so agents can use a mobile application instead of taking phone calls, reducing the (FONL) process from 12 minutes to three minutes or less.
            • Permitting Transmediterranea, a mediterranean ferry company, to implement a point-of-sale system that sends push notifications to travelers updating them about their trips and allowing customers to purchase tickets from a mobile app. The company also utilizes Salesforce IoT Explorer to access real-time data such as ferries’ locations and fuel consumption that’s stored in automated marine traffic systems. With real-time insight, Transmediterranea can also analyze competitors’ ferries to identify potential upsell opportunities.
            • Granting KONE, an engineering company that builds and services elevators and escalators, the ability to automate recurring processes such as management approvals and contract renewals. KONE hopes to eventually utilize real-time data from more than 1.1 million elevators and escalators to manage customer information and tasks such as scheduled maintenance.

            With Salesforce in place, companies can utilize the platform’s vast capabilities to tailor the suite to their unique and industry-level needs.

            Start Customizing Salesforce Today

            Businesses without the internal expertise to customize Salesforce have options to achieve this function, and one of the first steps in accomplishing this goal is finding a consulting partner to identify company objectives, discuss the requirements of the customization, and then start customizing Salesforce.

            Although businesses may be eager to perform numerous customizations quickly to boost productivity, such an approach can be overwhelming to employees. A slow, steady approach will enable sales teams to familiarize themselves with new functions and incorporate them more easily into their workflows. Change in the workplace can be hard for some staff members, and the last thing companies want on their hands is a team of unhappy employees who don’t buy into the new system.

            There’s a reason why Salesforce is the most popular CRM system in the world. In addition to providing businesses with a platform to manage their entire sales cycle, marketing initiatives, and customer support needs, Salesforce’s customization sets the platform apart from other alternatives on the market.

            Looking to learn more about how to customize Salesforce? Request a consultation from our consulting team.

            How to Improve Sales with Text Messaging

            The technology industry is never set, constantly advancing at a pace few other markets, if any, can replicate. For sales professionals, tech advancements have ushered in new opportunities to reach prospects and engage current customers whenever, wherever they are located. Thanks to the rise in popularity of smartphones during the “mobile revolution,” text messages now […]

            Rapid Technology Image

            Why Embracing Technology is a Requirement for your Business

            It is no secret that technology is rapidly changing how businesses function day to day. With the ability to quickly produce, test, iterate, and scale or pivot, companies of all sizes are experiencing the truth behind “Every Business is a Software Business.” Whether your company sells products or services, technology is an essential piece to […]

              How to Improve Sales with Text Messaging

              Older Posts »

              The technology industry is never set, constantly advancing at a pace few other markets, if any, can replicate. For sales professionals, tech advancements have ushered in new opportunities to reach prospects and engage current customers whenever, wherever they are located. Thanks to the rise in popularity of smartphones during the “mobile revolution,” text messages now provide the answer to the ultimate question that reps ask themselves every day: “How can I improve sales?”

              Not only is text messaging an easy way for people to communicate with one another quickly and directly, the open rate for texts is far greater than email. Business2Community and Lunar compiled numerous stats that position texting as a preferred communication method over more seasoned channels such as email or phone calls:

              • SMS (short message service) open rates are 98% compared to 20% for email
              • 94% of people cite voicemail as the least convenient way to communicate with a business or salesperson
              • Despite citing text messaging as a preferred communication method, only 60% of people have ever received a text message from a business or salesperson
              • SMS response rates are 45% versus email with just 6%
              • The average SMS response takes only 90 seconds, while email replies take 90 minutes
              • Nearly 50% of all email is spam, while text messages don’t have any spam filters

              Let’s dive deeper into how sales teams can utilize text messages for both reaching new prospects and working with current customers.

              Utilizing Text Messaging for Sales

              Sales teams shouldn’t take advantage of the fact that texts aren’t subject to varying degrees of spam filters like emails are. When sending introductory messages, they should always ask recipients if texting is an appropriate communication channel to establish trust right off the bat.

              The introduction: Sales teams can utilize A/B testing to see how different introductions fare against one another when first connecting with prospects. Does ending an introductory text message with “Is this a good number to reach you at?” versus “Hope to hear from you soon” elicit more responses? Use A/B testing and diligently track outcomes to find out.

              Once a prospect becomes a customer, texting can also serve effective purposes. Below are some examples of how sales reps can use texts in their sales arsenal:

              The confirmation: Reps with established customers can use text messages to confirm times for upcoming meetings with a message such as “Hey, Gill. Does 2pm on Thursday still work for our conference call? Looking forward to speaking with your team.”

              The check-in: Maybe customers have been quiet for some time, or there is a new addition to a company’s product or service lineup. A sales rep can use texts to keep customers in the loop with a message such as “Hi, Bob. Hope all is well with you. Did you hear about our new Salesforce integration? I think your group will love it! Let me know if you want more info.”

              These simple, yet personalized text messages can support the sales process from converting prospects to maintaining strong customer relationships.

              Unified Sales Efficiency

              Technology has ushered in a new era of what’s possible from an efficiency standpoint. Sales teams that are ready to use text messaging to improve their sales results should make sure they utilize tools that empower both the reps and managers to maximize sales outcomes. Some functions that will benefit reps include:

              • Native mobile messaging apps opposed to external apps to avoid disrupting the workflow
              • Efficient and easy-to-use dashboards
              • CRM integration to easily record customer interactions and visualize those interactions on their phones and on their computers

              For sales managers, these leaders should be able to easily:

              • Reassign numbers from departed sales reps to new employees to ensure prospect and customer communication isn’t stopped
              • Track sales activity to determine conversion rates
              • Visualize sales conversations that occur via text messaging to provide training to reps
              • Simplify the transition of prospects between sales reps, or from sales to account management teams

              What if there was a way to perform all of these functions through a single platform? With Uplink, a solution designed with sales teams in mind, companies can leverage their employees’ native messaging apps and Salesforce to text personalized messages to prospects and customers and then visualize those interactions on their phones and in the CRM. Uplink empowers sales reps to utilize text messaging to generate more opportunities and close deals at a higher rate than cold-calling or sending templated emails, while allowing sales managers to accurately track and report on sales rep performance. Request a trial today and learn how you can improve sales performance with Uplink.

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                Sales Communication Survey: 92% of Prospects Prefer Text and Email Over Phone

                Older Posts »

                Text messaging isn’t just a source of communication between friends, family, and colleagues anymore. In an age where spam calls are expected to represent nearly half of all mobile traffic in the United States this year, businesses have to tread lightly when thinking about cold-calling prospects, and text messaging has proven to be a far less intrusive sales communication tool to contact prospects.

                With text messaging as a primary sales communication tool, businesses can have one-on-one conversations with their targeted audiences quickly and actionably. Sales reps can briefly introduce themselves to new prospects, ping current customers about upcoming meetings, and check in with customers about their overall satisfaction with a certain product or service.

                Companies still clinging to the hope that making phone calls and leaving voicemails to prospects and current customers will boost their sales conversion rates and results in 2019 may find some eye-opening statistics from a recent Lunar study that puts text messaging at the very top of all sales communication channels.

                Sales Communication Survey Results

                The Lunar survey discovered that:

                • 94% of respondents cited voicemail as the least convenient way to communicate.
                • 92% of people would rather receive texts or emails from a business or salesperson than a phone call, compared to just 8% who prefer to receive a call as a first point of contact from a company.
                • Regardless of age, the majority of consumers approve of receiving texts from businesses, but only 60% of such respondents had received such messages in the last three months.
                • Despite some perceptions that older consumers may not be as technologically savvy as younger generations, respondents aged 45-60 preferred texts to other forms of communication at a higher rate than younger counterparts aged 18-29.
                • Compared to younger adults, respondents 30 and older were more likely to have received a text from a business.

                As mobile devices have become extensions of our hands, sales teams need to take full advantage of text messaging as a way to communicate with prospects, regardless of their age or demographics. Despite text messaging’s wide acceptance, the survey results show that companies haven’t yet tapped into text messaging as a sales communication tool, giving businesses able to utilize texts to increase sales a significant advantage over competitors still relying on older tactics.

                Personalize Your Sales Outreach

                Text messaging isn’t just a convenient sales communication method, it’s also a universal one utilized by all types of age groups on a global scale. In 2017, people sent an estimated 16 million text messages every minute, and this figure has undoubtedly grown since, as there are currently more than 5.1 billion unique mobile subscribers worldwide.

                In addition to their widespread usage globally, text messages also have high open rates compared to other contact methods typically used for follow up on sales opportunities. Given the direct one-to-one interaction through a text message, salespeople don’t have to hope and pray that their phone calls will be answered, their voicemails listened to, or if their emails are ever opened at all. With phone call connect rates steadily decreasing, text messaging helps ensure that sales reps’ time is being used efficiently, allowing reps to focus more on building connections and progressing deals, and less on trying to get prospects and customers to pick up the phone.

                Although there’s no denying that email is still very much a widespread communication method, with industry estimates projecting approximately 5.6 billion active email accounts worldwide in 2019 alone, the likelihood of sales reps’ prospecting emails finding their way into spam folders is far too great to ignore. In 2017, an average of approximately 103.5 million spam emails were sent every minute.

                For business emails specifically, spam email has also become a growing nuisance that may be clouding sales reps’ ability to gain traction among new prospects. Despite having protections against unwanted messages, spam is still making its way into recipients’ inboxes. According to the Radicati Group, an average of 19 spam messages will bypass spam and security filters for business email accounts on a daily basis in 2019, an increase from the average of 12 in 2015.

                Additionally, spam filters may capture emails that shouldn’t be classified as spam. This is especially detrimental for reps that rely on email to follow up on active deals or upsell existing customers.

                For sales reps pressured to close more deals, email simply isn’t the answer, while there’s a world of possibilities associated with targeted text messaging. Despite the convenience of text messaging in general compared to email or cold-calling, sales teams can’t just decide one day to start texting prospects out of the blue and expect to boost their conversion rates. They have to have the right foundation in place to maximize this sales communication tool, and pairing text messaging seamlessly with a customer relationship management (CRM) system like Salesforce can empower sales reps and managers to:

                • Strengthen brand loyalty by sending personalized messages to prospects and customers wherever they’re located and through their preferred communication channel (text)
                • Visualize and store all customer interactions within the CRM without needing to utilize a third-party messaging app or requiring reps to manually log messages
                • Boost conversion rates
                • Transfer numbers to new reps to pick up the conversation if a sales rep leaves the company or goes on vacation
                • Provide coaching and training on effective sales text messaging strategies

                Businesses can no longer ignore the proliferation of mobile devices as it relates to sales opportunities. With the ability to close more deals at their fingertips by pairing a text messaging strategy and a CRM system, sales reps shouldn’t be thinking about whether they “should” use text messaging to reach new prospects and send personalized messages to current customers; they should be asking themselves “how” to utilize this sales communication channel more effectively and rely less on outdated methods like phone calls and emails that have become more challenging in an age dominated by smartphones and their touchscreens.

                If you’re looking to better leverage text messaging as a sales communication tactic, make sure you’re thoroughly recording and analyzing outcomes in the CRM. Uplink by Lunar helps sales teams capture and visualize prospect and customer text messages directly in Salesforce. Start a trial of Uplink below and experience it for yourself.  

                Jim Kenney

                The Complicated Relationship Between Text Messages and Public Record Laws

                Texting is ubiquitous. By the mid-2000s, it had practically become the de facto form of communication for the Digital Age, largely facilitated by the mobile boom and the subsequent smartphone wars. According to GSMA Intelligence, more than 5 billion people worldwide have a cell phone subscription. To put that into perspective, nearly 65 percent of […]

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                  The Complicated Relationship Between Text Messages and Public Record Laws

                  Older Posts »

                  Texting is ubiquitous. By the mid-2000s, it had practically become the de facto form of communication for the Digital Age, largely facilitated by the mobile boom and the subsequent smartphone wars.

                  According to GSMA Intelligence, more than 5 billion people worldwide have a cell phone subscription. To put that into perspective, nearly 65 percent of Earth’s population owns a device that supports text messaging.

                  With that kind of penetration, it should come as no surprise that our relationship with texting is constantly evolving. From its origins in casual conversations, it has become an increasingly important communication tool for business and politics.

                  But issues can arise when government officials conduct business using text messaging. For one, public officials can easily delete important messages that interest the public. As Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney recently learned, deleting logs of government correspondence can raise concerns about state open record laws.

                  Philadelphia Mayor Deletes Years of Official Correspondence

                  July 2018 was a hectic month for Kenney. While serving his first term as mayor of Philadelphia, he navigated controversy after controversy. Meanwhile, he was making arrangements to go on his first international trade mission since taking office.

                  Kenney conducted a lot of his business over a mobile phone. When he assumed the role of mayor, he was given the option to use a city-issued mobile phone, but he declined. Instead of carrying two devices, Kenney decided to use his personal smartphone to conduct official business.

                  According to Kenney’s spokesperson, Deana Gamble, Kenney regularly deletes items on his phone to clear space. The problem is that the texts on Kenney’s phone are not just grocery reminders from his spouse. The texts that he deleted — which allegedly dated back three years — could’ve shown his community how he addressed his mayoral duties. Ultimately, those texts were public record. Or they should’ve been.

                  Text Messaging and Public Record

                  In recent years, we’ve seen a lot of legislation introduced in response to the increasing rise of business-related texting among public officials. At the federal level, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) governs federal public record laws, and most states have enacted their own legislation to reinforce or expand on the FOIA. For example, Pennsylvania has the Right-to-Know Law, which has guaranteed people the right to access public records from government agencies since the beginning of 2009.

                  In 2005, the Washington Supreme Court ruled that official correspondence on personal computers — in other words, email — applied to FOIA. Then, ten years later, correspondence on mobile devices, including SMS and social media messaging, eventually fell under FOIA jurisdiction.

                  As the Right-to-Know Law was just making its way into the hands of state government officials, the general public was starting to notice the blind spots in legislation related to public records.
                  When a public official uses a government-issued device, there’s little question that all communication through the phone is public record. But what if the official uses a personal phone for government work? Should some or all data on the phone be public record?

                  In essence, an official’s personal device is subject to public record laws only insofar as the device is used in the course of official duty. In other words, not everything on the device is subject to public record laws, only correspondence pertaining to the official’s role and related duties.

                  This scenario can be complicated. You’ve got a situation where information that should be public record is stored on a device that’s privately owned. That means it’s up to the public official to be diligent about cataloging all the necessary data from his or her personal device. The rest of us have to trust that no data is missing or omitted.

                  The situation with Kenney’s deleted texts renewed criticism of current public record laws and protocols. Specifically, some are now calling for increased regulation of our public officials’ mobile communications and how they are documented. After all, the onus is on officials to submit correspondence for public record.

                  But does it have to be?

                  How Uplink Can Help

                  What if public officials didn’t have to worry about cataloging official correspondence? What if records were kept externally and stored automatically, allowing people to delete anything from their personal devices without losing records of their data?

                  Although it was designed with sales teams in mind, Uplink has applications for many unique situations. That includes using the tool to catalog important mobile correspondence.

                  Here’s how it works: Uplink is built on proprietary software that leverages the technology already at your fingertips. By assigning both the sender and receiver of mobile messages their own Uplink Numbers, text messages are filtered — and, more importantly, documented — in the Uplink web app. It all happens automatically from behind the scenes, meaning you get to send and receive text messages through Uplink in virtually the same way that you exchange text messages with family members and friends.

                  With Uplink, there are no complicated software installs and no third-party messaging platforms involved. All you need is a mobile device and its native messaging app, an active plan with your wireless carrier, and an Uplink account to start cataloging all your correspondence.

                  Even when messages are deleted from the mobile device, they remain accessible in Uplink. Essentially, this means Uplink alleviates the need to manually catalog important text messages. If you’re someone who holds public office, Uplink can be a great tool for making sure you’re complying with all applicable public record laws.

                  Interest in how elected and appointed officials are fulfilling their duties will only increase in the years ahead. For this reason, public servants should know that a tool like Uplink can help facilitate transparency and build trust among the public.

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                    What We Learned at SaaStr Annual 2019

                    Older Posts »

                    SaaStr Annual is a must-attend event for any SaaS business. It’s not just the place to learn cutting-edge business techniques in cloud technology — it’s also the perfect event to connect with like-minded professionals using networking tools such as Braindates and Brella.

                    In this post, we’ll reveal the most useful tips we learned while we were there, some of which I summarized after a long day 1 in this Quora post. We scoured the presentation decks and linked to them in our summaries so you can easily find more details.

                    Expanding Your Customer Base

                    One of the most critical tasks for SaaS companies is increasing the customer base. As most speakers emphasized, subscriptions are one of the best sources of revenue available. Here are some of the speakers’ best tips for successful scaling.

                    Tailor Your Closing Process

                    For B2B SaaS companies, the sales funnel is long, and adoption remains a challenge. Romain Lapeyre, CEO of Gorgias, closes more deals by fine-tuning the entire process. By refining his sales team’s closing strategy and personalizing onboarding, Gorgias achieved a three times higher close rate and a customer activation rate of 95 percent.

                    Build End-User Trust

                    Users like honest companies — and as Shannon Spanhake, the CEO and co-founder of Cleo, says — trust can lead to big gains. Her company, which facilitates child care for working parents, crafted a down-to-earth, honest marketing campaign about the stark reality of parenthood. It increased deals from $100,000 to $1 million in a single year.

                    Go Upmarket Strategically

                    When you decide to move upmarket, there are many factors to consider. May Habib, the CEO of Qordoba, has six tips for success. She emphasized telling a better brand story, increasing bottom-of-the-funnel content, and investing resources into pipeline development.

                    Mapistry CEO Allie Janoch and VP of marketing Lauren Alexander noted that handling buyer expectations and learning how to navigate the complex sale cycle are other ways to ensure success upmarket. 

                    Provide Useful Content

                    Inbound marketing is having its moment, which many SaaStr conference speakers confirmed. In Quora Writer’s Workshop, Quora evangelist JD Prater emphasized the importance of providing thought leadership to establish your business as an industry leader. This approach builds your reputation as a trustworthy source — plus it helps attract new clients. Prater’s biggest tip: “Don’t sell. Provide value.”

                    Maintaining a Strong Customer Base

                    Speakers at SaaStr Annual highlighted the importance of maintaining a robust customer base, a priority for any successful SaaS business.

                    Make Your Business Customer-Centric

                    If your business isn’t already customer-centric, make it a priority. Nicolas Dessaigne, CEO of Algolia, and Hollie Wegman, VP of marketing at Segment, propose a five-step path:

                    1. Gain insights into your customers with analytics
                    2. Be helpful
                    3. Provide a consistent experience
                    4. Honor advocates
                    5. Be intentional with your culture

                    Sandy Carter, VP of Windows and enterprise workloads at Amazon Web Services, notes that working backward from the customer, or considering the customer’s needs, wants, and experiences first, is an excellent way to provide the experience that today’s customers are searching for.

                    Prioritize Customer Success and Support

                    Customer success teams should be available to help customers every step of the way —especially during onboarding. Yamini Rangan, chief customer officer of Dropbox, notes that you should have hired sales support teams yesterday; they are one of the most important hires a SaaS business can make. At Lunar, our customer success manager Van Kwan takes customer success seriously, proactively working with our clients to make sure that we’re doing everything we can to ensure their success.

                    Crafting a Strong Support System

                    Hiring (and keeping) qualified employees is a focus for SaaS companies, as SaaStr conference speakers consistently confirmed.

                    Create a Positive Work Environment

                    As Adaptive Insights CEO Tom Bogan noted in his presentation, putting the team first is a sure way to success. Elisa Steele, CEO of the HR company Namely, purports that businesses should treat employees like consumers to cultivate a desirable workplace culture. In other words, ensure your workplace has a clear purpose and definable employee experience — and don’t forget to regularly gather insights about your team to inform both factors. Lunar VP Kyle McMahon is looking into employee NPS as a possible way to gauge employee satisfaction.

                    Hire the Right People

                    Easier said than done, right? The consensus from Plato co-founder and CEO Quang Hoang, Segment CPO Tido Carriero, and Mode CTO Heather Rivers is that successful hiring is a three-step process. First, know which roles you’re hiring for and when you need them filled. Then, standardize your hiring process and make an informed decision. Egnyte CMO Jennifer Pockell Dimas adds that functional organization is especially important when you consider expanding your marketing team, as is thinking about hiring in stages of funding.

                    Get Out of the Way

                    When it comes to successful global and nationwide teams, Eventbrite SVP Pat Poels asserts that once you hire leaders and team members you can trust, you need to get out of the way and let them do their jobs. Trust and autonomy are the keys to a happy and productive team.


                    Our team learned a lot throughout SaaStr 2019, and we hope we helped you learn something of value, too. We not only want to provide great SaaS products like Uplink, but we also aim to continue to find ways to support our culture and core values: “Better, Together”;“Expect The Moon”; and “Professionally Casual”.See you at SaaStr 2020.


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