Today we’re the global leader in Win Loss and Customer Experience Analysis. But it all began with seven makeshift desks, three friends, and one big idea.
The Start of Something Great
For more than 10 years, Ken Allred sold complex software solutions for companies like Information Enabling Technologies, SunGard HTE, and PeopleSoft. With a family at home and a need to provide, Ken spent hours pounding pavement and pushing product.
Over time, he began to think more about his won and lost deals, trying to figure out a pattern.
“There were deals I thought for sure I was going to win, and I’d end up losing them. There were other deals I thought I would lose, and I ended up winning them,” Ken explained.
As a way to educate himself, Ken started talking to his buyers post-sale to better understand what was driving their decisions. He was surprised to find common factors that were influencing the outcome of his deals.
“For me, speaking to buyers gave me a perspective I didn’t have. It uncovered things that I hadn’t thought about before,” he said.
Ken quickly began to incorporate those best practices into his sales process, and saw a dramatic increase in his ability to connect with buyers and close more deals.
This experience led Ken to believe there might be an opportunity to help other companies understand why they were winning and losing in competitive sales situations. Ken knew this method of win loss analysis—based on feedback directly from buyers—could help businesses both large and small be more successful.
The First Two Years
Ken quit his day job in 2000 and hired three friends. The team assembled in a 500 sq. ft. unfinished basement to make this dream a reality.
The basement was cramped quarters with seven custom, makeshift plywood desks built to try to maximize the space, and a single kerosene heater supplying warmth. It was all in an effort to save money while they got the company off the ground.
“I still wonder how we were able to get people to work for us in the beginning,” Ken admitted.
After two years of refining the Win Loss product and finding a loyal base of early-adopter buyers, the team said goodbye to the basement in favor of a “real” office. The move allowed Primary Intelligence to hire new people to accelerate sales, automate some of the processes with software, and scale the delivery process.
We’re Still Building
Ken’s initial innovation not only set the stage for a strong company, but also established a culture of continuous improvement. Today we still reinvest 25% to 30% of our revenue into our products and services, so we’re always getting better. With Win Loss Analysis as the anchor, we also offer Customer Experience Analysis, the TruVoice software platform, and industry benchmarking reports.
We’re proud of how far we’ve come, and even more excited about the future.