In this conversation, we look at Apollo review done by a RevOps leader with almost a decade of sales experience. This sales leader has been using Apollo.io for over 2.5 years and has in depth experience with the tool. His Apollo.io review is detailed and informative.
Convo with a revops leader who has used Apollo for over two yeas
What is Apollo?
Apollo is a sales enablement tool, but you can also think of it like a prospecting tool. So. You put your like, uh, what’s, what’s a, what’s a popular one. That’s like a salesloft. Mixed with a lightweight, uh, ZoomInfo but via like LinkedIn, that’s kind of how I describe it. To learn more about what is apollo.io we have have a lengthy writeup.
What problem does Apollo solve?
Apollo solves the problem of Process automated prospecting and lead routing based on criteria. . A lot of the other tools I’ve used before this, especially for a smaller company. Right? So there might be bigger tools, but since we were a growing company at the time we needed something that was cheaper. But could give us a lot of the features and the main one was how can we create as a super small team? How can we create. As much of automated prospecting and their Lead scoring and lead flows and playbooks. All the new stuff is what attracted me to it. So like the liquid syntax to where you can create amillion different, like if then, and, or sequence response in your template, but only the right appropriate one would show up to the PO prospect. So it was like a combination of. More automation, but with more targeting, Um, for the prospecting and then also the sequencing. So it was like a one, two punch that really, really stood out to us.
Who uses Apollo based on say the job title, size of team, company size, etc.?
I use it the most. So I was, when I started using it, I was an AE/BDR slash content creator. Like all of the above. And it’s turned, I’m still the heavy user moving into the head of rev ops, but, uh, Both the co-founder and the head of sales for the only other two people on the sales team will be hiring eight years in the future. They use it more for like the plugin, the extension, I should say. So like, Uh, mainly for the templates and the emailing. They don’t do much else besides that.
Who else can use Apollo?
Who else can use Apollo like tit, like theoretically or AEs BDRs, head of sales. I would definitely save anybody. Rev ops could use it. I don’t think it’s as good for marketing, although we used it for that, because we were just kind of double, double duty with it. But, um, yeah, I’d say. Those would be the main titles.
Who shouldn’t use Apollo.io, when are you not ready to use a tool like Apollo or ready to buy a tool like Apollo?
Um, that’s a good question. Um, I would. Um, no. Okay. So I was going to go off with like company size, but I don’t think that’s actually accurate. I would say. If you’re small and you’re targeting huge, like huge deals. You wouldn’t need it because you would just spend time in that, like LinkedIn sales navigator could do it for you. Right? So you’re just thinking very custom, low volume emails, say anybody who needs to send. More than I’m trying to think of like some rough number. I’d say any company that’s trying to send more than a thousand well, Call it 500 emails a week. And also needs to do prospecting. So like that would be my sweet spot.
What are the top features of Apollo.io?
Lad scoring playbooks,, liquid syntax. Really looking forward to the upcoming coming native Salesforce integrations. So you can actually do Apollo in Salesforce. It’s not there yet, but that’ll be sweet.
The LinkedIn pop-up that happens on LinkedIn is pretty sweet. So that way I don’t have to be an Apollo or I don’t have to be in Salesforce. I also think the bi-directional, actually, that’s a good one. It’s a bi- directional sync is phenomenal. Because if I can get anything into our Salesforce, I can get also get it back into Apollo. So I don’t need to worry.
What does Apollo integrate with?
Because everything integrates with Salesforce. Vis-a-vis integrates with Apollo. Hubspot too.
Any other features of Apollo that are noteworthy or any of the features that you mentioned that you want to expand on?
I used to like the automatic rescheduling based on out of office lingo, but it’s gotten messy. It’s got, it’s not as good as it used to be for some reason. So. That was one, but until they, they clean it up. It’s it’s. It was cool. I don’t know. I think I’ve mentioned the main ones I care about.
What are the top integrations of Apollo?
The ones that we use. I only know about. Salesforce, which I did. So I would say Salesforce, HubSpot people like HubSpot. Unfortunately. You can’t run them both at the same time, because you can only technically have one CRM. And HubSpot is counted as a CRM, which is kind of lame because if you don’t use it as that, but, uh, I’d say Salesforce HubSpot. I don’t know if they count LinkedIn isn’t integration since it’s kind of like LinkedIn, it’s like it was built off of part of LinkedIn., Cut I would say. LinkedIn.
Pros, positives, or major benefits, of using Apollo?
The pros have been the company. They’ve been, I mean, Really good to work with. They’ve been very accommodating to, um, they hooked us up back on 2020. And they’ve just, we’ve kept that discount even as we continue to grow, which is, I mean, I don’t know how long we’ll get that, but that, that stands out a lot. Also being able to work with the product team. You know, I’ve been able to be invited to some betas, to test things out. I’ve also gotten help from some higher level product people. So that’s been like the team has really stood out surprisingly, And then. I don’t know, all the features I mentioned before.
Cons, negatives, or shortcomings of using Apollo.io?
Oh, there CS team, there CS the team is great, but the client success reps just don’t ever hit us up. And like, we had our rep change on us. And I didn’t know when, like, just. That was a, that was kind of a turnoff. Um, the, what else is a con. The email validation isn’t as high confidence as I’d like it to be. But I know there’s a trade-off. In terms of how that works, right? Because if you think of like a zoom info or something, it’s like having the best. Uh, you know, email delivery rates, like I’d say Apollo is probably like a six out of 10, which, you know, it’s good enough when, depending what you’re trying to do, but it is kind of a pain to have so many like bounced and bad emails. Um, I’m trying to think of something else. That’s it. I would say those, those are the only two things.
Why could someone upgrade or switch to Apollo?
Tired of doing manual emails. Another reason is that they’re looking for more customization. In terms of how they can, what they say to people without having to do a ton of extra work. So I think that was a big one for us. And the price point’s pretty reasonable, to be honest.
There’s information on the website, but are there different plans, options, or packages for Apollo.io?
Good question. Uh, I think it’s very custom. So it’s based on if you do calling or not. Right. So they split out the phone numbers. It used to be included in your credit. So it used to just cost you three credits instead of one to do a phone number. They were really good at that actually like their direct dials were freaking awesome. Um,
I’m trying to think it’s used by how much it’s how much credits you want and then how many seats you have. So it’s, it’s pretty customized. It doesn’t seem like they have. You know, tears, if that makes sense, I could be completely wrong. I haven’t looked at their pricing in over a year, but that’s just.
They have, I know they have three packages. They. Actually a free package and then two. Prices on their website and then they have the enterprise, which is called, I think we’re on the enterprise because it’s all custom. So yeah, I actually.
Any tips or tricks for using Apollo.io?
I don’t know. I would, oh, um, well, it’s not really a tip, but you’d be surprised how many people you can find by searching directly in Apollo without needing to go to LinkedIn. Um, If your lead capture catches a LinkedIn somehow like that makes it that’s a shortcut, never try and search, just go through the LinkedIn profile link and then you can use the pop-up and push them straight into your CRM.
What is the learning curve to get up to speed using Apollo.io?
I think to get it to a level where you’re getting everything you want done is not that bad compared to any other two. I think it’s pretty easy. The team’s pretty responsive when you’re communicating with them, the CS team. I’d say to understand. The more advanced features, the learning curve is pretty high. It’s, it’s not, I don’t think it makes sense to a lot of people normally. But if you engage with the team, they’re very helpful and they’ve always walked me through any questions I’ve had. But I would say to get like a pat, like what you need the basics, it’s pretty easy. I’d say it’s like a.
I don’t know. I call it pretty easy. And then if you’re trying to use advanced feature that I call it like. Moderately difficult.
How good are the supporting resources like documentation, learning, customer support?
They’re pretty good at updating them. The bigger they get there there’ll be better. So, um, I look forward to it. They also have website chat. That’s surprisingly really good. Like if, if I can catch them when they’re on. I can get pretty much anything I need via the chat bot, which I know people love.
Rate Apollo on a scale of one to 10, you can use decimal points.
Seven and a half solid. Like an eight. They get the little like autoresponder back, but. I also never give out like anything higher than a. Eight and a half. So…
Any alternatives, any alternatives or competitors of Apollo.io you’d recommend or should be considered when evaluating this type of software?
If you’re on the smaller side, I would look at prospect IO. That’s actually what we used before. They were really good. And they’ve been continuing to expand their offering. They’re a lot cheaper and like their email validation. Was pretty much the same. So that, like, that was a big, big thing we noticed. Um, if you’re going bigger, I know, probably like the main ones sales, loft outreach. Some of the bigger ones for calling, although I think. Apollo is kind of on par with them anyways.
Is a product demo necessary before purchasing Apollo.
Depends how good your questions are. If someone really knows what they want, they can get the information they need without needing to do a demo, to make their decision. Most people will probably have to do a product demo though. Okay. I think it is worth it though, because you know, yeah, it is, it is because there are things that you might not know about that they can show you that they’re pretty cool. That might push them over the line or answer their questions or elicit other questions that people don’t automatically think of.
Does Apollo offer a free trial?
As far as pricing, what is the pricing for Apollo?
Actually, let me pull it up. So I’m not just talking about, but, um, Well, I’m on here. Oh, here we go. Uh, billing. So we pay quarterly. It’s loading right now. Uh, damn there. We really pay that little. So for three, we pay 1500 bucks a quarter.
What do you have for that?
We get three seats. We get a hundred thousand credits a month, which is way more than we need. Um, and we get all the support. We get a designated customer service rep. If we, if we reach out to them, they’re there, but they’re not super proactive. Access to beta feature. I mean, yeah. That’s nothing super crazy, but yeah.
Are there any seat minimums for that level of plan?
I don’t think so.
Any discounts available or any advice on getting discounts with Apollo?
Always ask. I mean, ours was a little bit of a unique situation because we hit them up for a discount, like April of 2020. So you remember how that was like, So, and they honor it like. You know, they wanted to keep their clients. So they give us a good discount. Um, they’re definitely willing to make discounts. I would say.
Classic. Uh, normal tactics do try to do it towards the last month of the quarter. Last two weeks of the quarter, when they got to do quota. I don’t know if they do it monthly, they might. So always try to see if you can get a little squeeze at the end. But always ask. They’ve been pretty receptive, especially if you’re going to be doing. You know, like, uh, you know, annual billing. ask for like, Hey, what kind of discounts do you have for annual billing? I don’t know if the smaller ones are set in stone because we’re on the enterprise for the negotiation, but. I would ask.
What advice would you give to someone who is considering purchasing Apollo?
I would say. Think about your current workflow. What are the biggest, like manual time sucks. Write those down and come with those questions to the meeting. I don’t see what they give you because the basic features, if you’re looking at a sales enablement tool, It has all the basics, right? Like, A lot, like a lot of the tools have like the emailing, the scheduling, the. I don’t know if they have personas and other tools, but that’s a cool one too, which helps with like lead scoring. So yeah, I would just say, what are the biggest manual pain point time sucks. Write those out. Ahead of time. So then in the call, you can focus on getting those answered. And then that would, I think, puts you in a good position to know whether or not it’s the right tool for you.
Anything else someone should know before purchasing Apollo?
Talk to another Apollo user, at least one.
If you’re considering a tool like Apollo. You need to ensure your email accounts are warmed up properly. Check out this list of the best email warm up tools.