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Productivity - 8 min READ

Consulting use case: Silicon Foundry

4 Copper features this business advisory firm uses to grow their network

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Author photo: Katrina Oko-Odoi

Katrina Oko-Odoi

Sr. Content Marketing Manager

Business type: Innovation and corporate venture advisory firm (consultancy)

Business size: 20-50 employees

Time with Copper: 5 years (since 2018)

Main use case: Keeping track of their large network of business contacts across two segments: multinational corporations and suppliers. Team members access contact history to keep conversations moving forward and facilitate connections between multinational corporations and emerging tech companies for partnership and business development opportunities.

Silicon Foundry’s favorite Copper features — and how they’re using them

The firm’s CEO and Managing Partner, Neal Hansch shared his team’s four favorite Copper features and walked us through how they get the most value from them: sales pipelines, custom filters, tasks, and the LinkedIn integration (via Surfe).

Sales pipelines

As a consultancy, Silicon Foundry’s business development process varies across clients in length and engagement type. Being able to customize their sales pipelines in Copper to reflect their unique business workflows has worked well for them. They created two core pipelines to manage their main business relationships: New Business and Renewals. They customized the names of each pipeline stage to match how they refer to the process internally. Here’s how each pipeline looks in Copper:

New Business pipeline

Renewals pipeline

Since Silicon Foundry’s main business offering is in the form of an annual membership, they use the Renewals pipeline to engage current member clients ahead of their renewal date.

How exactly did they decide on the structure of their pipelines and stages? “We identified the clear waypoints in our sales process and defined the stages from there. It’s about finding a balance between having too many or too few stages,” Neal explains.

Neal likes to view open Opportunities in the pipeline view so that he can see each one at a glance and get a quick idea of the open account values they have in the works.

Tasks for collaboration

The Silicon Foundry team is highly collaborative, and they always have multiple people touching an account at any given time. To keep everyone on the same page and avoid duplicating their efforts or falling culprit to miscommunication, they’ve made Copper tasks their best friend.

Since their core group of users is relatively small and the tasks will differ slightly from opportunity to opportunity, they’ve found it works best to create tasks manually after engaging with a potential client. Here’s what their typical process looks like:

  1. The team completes a call with a prospect

  2. They divide 4 follow-up tasks among team members

  3. They create each task and assign owners and due dates in Copper

This flexible approach helps support the team’s collaborative process, while allowing them to customize their touchpoints and follow-ups with each prospective client depending on their needs.

LinkedIn integration via Surfe

Like many consultancies, Silicon Foundry frequently uses LinkedIn to expand their network and keep their contacts updated. They’ve further enhanced this practice using the Copper integration offered by Surfe, which syncs each user’s LinkedIn profile directly to their Copper account.

With this sync activated, Silicon Foundry consultants can add new contacts and update existing contact details right inside LinkedIn.

Adding a new contact

Say a new prospective client just messaged Neal; he can pull up their profile and quickly click “Add to Copper,” designating it as a new contact or linking it to an existing Company or Opportunity. An abbreviated version of the actual Copper entry then pulls up inside the LinkedIn window, so Neal can easily update the contact type — in their case, he selects from Potential Customer, Current Customer, Service Provider, VC, Startup, Family Office or Employee.

Using Surfe credits, Neal can then tell it to pull in the contact’s email and/or phone number also. If he wants to add more detail, he can click a button to take him over to the Copper app to edit or add notes to the full record.

Viewing or updating an existing contact

Say Neal receives a message from Ben, a Research & Development Specialist at one of his client companies. He pulls up their profile in LinkedIn and can immediately see whether that person is already a contact in Copper. Since Ben is a current contact, it immediately pulls up his abbreviated Copper record inside LinkedIn, showing who owns that contact, what type of contact they are, and what opportunities or deals they’re associated with.

For the Silicon Foundry team, knowing the “owner” of that contact is critical, telling Neal who he should go to on his team for a warm introduction or to learn more details about the client. If he wants even more details, Neal can click the “View in Copper” button to access the full Copper record and get a more detailed history of their interactions with Ben.

Custom filters for brainstorming

With relationship building at the heart of what they do, brainstorming and ideation are central to Silicon Foundry’s business development activities. The firm likes to host periodic gatherings and events where they invite top client members or high-target prospects and introduce them to emerging leaders in the startup and entrepreneurial space. The team loves using Copper’s custom filters to help them drum up the perfect guest list for an upcoming event.

Let’s look at how they used Copper to plan the invite lists for an intimate corporate dinner. During a team meeting, Neal will open the People window in Copper, and click the “+” button in the upper left corner to create a new custom list.

From there, they can select any record type to help pull in the right contacts. For example, they might select VC for “Contact Type” and California for “State.”

After they see the results that Copper pulls into the custom list, Neal and team can edit the list from there, removing any contacts that don’t fit and adding more contacts based on additional filter criteria. This gives the team an excellent starting point for a full event guest list. They can save this custom filter so that team members can add to and refine the list after their meeting.

To hear more about Silicon Foundry's journey with Copper, read their full case study.

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If you’re a current Copper user, give these features a try and see if they can help drive more value for your business. If you aren’t yet a customer, sign up for a free, 14-day trial today — no credit card needed.

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