Need-to-have product needed a better process! 

Plivo is a communications platform that 70,000+ customers use to integrate SMS and voice capabilities into their applications. Founded in 2011, Plivo simplifies telecommunications by providing a CPaaS (Communications platform as a service) infrastructure capable of handling billions of messages and calls each year.

In this case study, we’ll share how Plivo scaled its inbound and outbound operations with help from InsideScale.

Diversification of the sales funnel

Offering a “need-to-have product” in the CPaaS industry, Plivo had traditionally relied on inbound leads as its main source of business. 

Despite Plivo’s initial (and impressive!) success, CEO & Founder, Venky Balasubramanian, suspected that the company’s very small sales team (2 SDRs + 2 AEs) was leaving money on the table and lacked proper supervision. Venky also wanted to diversify the funnel with outbound leads in an effort to elevate average selling price. 

So, Venky brought us in to build a scalable process and manage the team. 

Boosting engagement with inbound leads

After assessing the situation, we confirmed that Venky’s original concerns were indeed correct. Plivo had a high number of inbound leads that were only touched once – if ever – by SDRs. To make matters worse, SDRs were cherry-picking leads and ignoring the rest, which is typical for green SDRs who lack oversight or formal processes. 

We also noticed that Plivo’s Salesforce and instances were a bit of a mess (again, normal for an early stage team with high lead volumes). After working closely with Plivo’s Sales Operations team to overhaul lead stages, we then implemented a bulletproof follow-up process that optimized their triggers for inbound leads. 

Implementing a 7x follow-up process for inbound leads delivered staggering results: 

  • Open rates skyrocketed to 80-90%. 
  • Reply rates averaged 70-80%.
  • 30 additional meetings were booked within 30 days. 
  • Meeting quality increased dramatically, thanks to the new SQO criteria that we created

Now that’s pretty good for inbound, but what about outbound?

Overhauling outbound

The next phase was to dial up Plivo’s outbound efforts, but finding SMS and voice opportunities at scale isn’t easy. So, our team engineered a data enrichment process via DataFox that cracked the account data puzzle.

We also implemented an omni-channel outreach approach that leveraged a human tone and produced equally wild results:

  • Opens between 60-90% at scale. 
  • Replies above 15% on average. 
  • Each SDR hit 10 or more Sales Qualified Opportunities a month. 

Now, ten opportunities per SDR in one month is solid, but what’s especially wild is that nearly every opportunity was already using a competing CPaaS product. That’s right, we created a repeatable process for breaking in with competitors! 

Staffing up to keep pace

Now that the engine was humming, Plivo needed help with hiring. Once again, our team at InsideScale was happy to help.

In fact, we were directly responsible for hiring ten new SDRs – including four promotions to AE, Solutions Engineer, and Team Lead. And, the Team Lead is now fully enabled to run the process via a comprehensive set of sales enablement documentation and reporting suite.

Maybe that’s why Tom White, VP of Sales and Success at Plivo, said this about us: 

“Lou from InsideScale is ‘the guy’ for building your BDR team! I’ve never seen a more predictable and repeatable process than what he built for us at Plivo – and we operate in a complex space with technical buyers. His team building and leadership abilities are second to none. We now have a world-class BDR team and foundation to scale with thanks to InsideScale.”

Maximize pipeline velocity with InsideScale

From inbound to outbound and staffing, our team at InsideScale is here to help you every step of the way. 

Message us at to learn more about elevating your pipeline.

"InsideScale is the 'Best in the Biz' for kickstarting your outbound program"

Jake Biskar

Jake Biskar


Jake was an original member of the famous SDR Team at Talkdesk Portland. After being hired and trained by Lou, Jake established himself as an elite team member. He went on to build the SDR program at Rainforest QA, which he scaled to 15 people at its height. Jake has also built successful SDR teams at and Flurry by Oath. 

Jake is a key contributor to InsideScale’s iterative process. Between he and Lou, they’ve implemented SDR frameworks at over 20 startups. As a modern operator and product of the system, Jake is a pro at pushing things forward.

Sales development aside, Jake is a proud father of two and loves staying active. From biking to golfing and marathons, Jake is dedicated to maintaining optimal health and wellness.

Loretta Jones

Loretta Jones


Loretta Jones is a leading mind in the field of B2B demand gen marketing. She was the first Head of Marketing at EchoSign (acquired by Adobe) and ran teams at Coveo, Insightly, and CodeSignal before joining Mixmax as CMO in 2018.

Loretta also owns a consulting practice and has collaborated with InsideScale on a few gigs before moving into an advisory role. The Loretta Jones / InsideScale partnership is proof that marketing and sales development are better together. 

Loretta resides in San Francisco and enjoys spending time with her husband and dogs. When they’re not both busy with their tech careers, you might spot them scuba diving in Hawaii, Mexico, or the Caribbean.

Colin McGrew

Colin McGrew


Colin started the famous team at GoodData Portland, where he hired and trained Lou for his first SDR gig. Colin grew the team to 20 people at its height and laid the groundwork for the InsideScale process that’s iterated over the years.

Colin held marketing and closing roles at Keboola and Postano and also founded his own consulting practice. As a Sr. Consultant, he helped SaaStr market their Annual Event and Kixie establish it’s outbound process from scratch. 

Colin resides in Portland, Oregon. In addition to his love for consulting and data-driven sales/marketing, Colin enjoys meditation, studying philosophy, spending time at the river, and barbecuing (when it’s actually sunny).

Sean Ericson

Sean Ericson


Sean launched his sales career as a foundational SDR on Lou’s original Talkdesk team and has since implemented sales development frameworks at 4-Tell, 500Tech, and Meetup.

Having worked on 10+ projects since joining InsideScale in January 2018, Sean creates awesome sales ops frameworks and shows reps how to execute efficient, end-to-end workflows. Navigating the complicated matrix of sales stacks and data comes second nature for Sean — and clients tend to love him for it.

Sean is currently based in San Francisco but regularly spends time in New York and London. In fact, he just completed his Masters in International Development at the London School of Economics. His passion for investing in people is expressed daily as a consultant and member of the InsideScale community.

Lou Petrossi

Lou Petrossi

Founder, CEO

Lou began his sales development career as an outbound SDR at GoodData. From there, he built Showpad’s early outbound program as their first US-based SDR (US employee #5). He then went on to lead Talkdesk’s first outbound program as Director (US employee #7). Drawing from these success stories, Lou developed a progressive process that enabled him to found InsideScale (f.k.a Petrossi Ventures).

Since launching in 2016, Lou and the InsideScale team have built sales development frameworks and teams for 20+ startups. He loves building processes that help clients achieve greater professional success and enjoy a higher quality of life. Lou’s goal is to bring as many great products and people to market as possible through InsideScale.

Born in the Bay Area, Lou was raised in a big Italian family and has 10 nieces and nephews. He is passionate about living an organic lifestyle, working out, disc golfing, and seeing live music, which suits life in San Francisco perfectly. 




Brendon Cassidy, Founder of Cassidy Ventures, is a respected leader in the insides sales community and popular voice on LinkedIn. He was LinkedIn’s first Head of Sales, took EchoSign from zero to acquisition by Adobe, and served successful stints as VP of Sales at Talkdesk and HackerRank.

At Cassidy Ventures, Brendon has worked with over 40 startups to define their go-to-market strategies and implement tactical execution plans to win around product, marketing, and business development. And, from a sales perspective, Brendon can recruit and hire his own team, define your sales strategy, pitch, and pricing, 

Outside of his many accomplishments, Brendon’s top passion and accomplishment is being a husband and father of two. He also enjoys sports, politics, movies, and fly fishing. 

I’ve worked with InsideScale across several consulting and full time engagements. I’m not sure there are many better for building your outbound strategy.