Welcome to the true B2B sales tech heavy-weight fight: Gong vs Chorus.
When comparing software, rarely do you see such passion east of Silicon Valley.
Look at shear response volume to James Parry's basic LinkedIn post:
Anyway, you're here to evaluate the pros & cons of both tools.
You want more visibility into your sales team's meetings while enabling reps to become the best at what they do: closing deals.
Let's dive into the good, the bad, & the ugly between Gong vs Chorus, while introducing a potentially better-fitting alternative.
Gong vs Chorus: A Race Upstream
While both companies arrived on the scene in 2015, they've taken divergent paths to arrive at the below breakdown.
The first few years centered around building their brands around a new technology coined "Conversation Intelligence" or C.I. (more on this in a second).
With the remote work boom, they skyrocketed. As capitalism is one to do, competitors entered the space in the wake of the increased demand.
Gong created Revenue Intelligence as a fresh category in 2020. The goal was to sell upstream & close bigger logos (of the Fortune 500 variety).
Chorus stuck with the original C.I. category but joined the race to sign enterprise companies.
Since then, Gong is valued at more unicorns than it knows what to do with & collected every B2B software award. Chorus sold to ZoomInfo to keep up.
Small Business in Limbo
In the wake of this arms race, Mid-Market, Small-medium businesses (SMB), & startup companies were left in limbo. They're looking for more visibility into their sales meetings, but not at the enterprise cost.
Pickle was launched as an alternative to serve those growing, mighty sales teams with what they actually need.
Conversation & Revenue Intelligence: What's the Difference?
Let's rewind real quick. Conversation intelligence software provides leaders & teams a clear view into every customer-facing meeting. This is done by recording, transcribing, & analyzing remote conversations.
Leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) & natural language processing (NLP), they provide insight into what's working & what isn't for every deal:
- Top questions
- Topic patterns
- Competitor mentions
- Common objections
- And more
As discussed above, Gong coined this category in order to stand out.
True R.I. would track marketing stats along with sales & customer success. They haven't gotten there yet, but have built valuable functions for larger companies to keep a pulse on most revenue activities.
R.I. encompasses everything C.I. does but adds a sales forecasting layer on top:
- Deal progression
- Pipeline alerts
- Prospect management
How high does my "IQ" need to be?
With all these "intelligent" tools coming out...it's a fair question.
We believe only one intelligence matters in most non-billion $ deals: emotional.
Sales teams have to connect with buyers on a human level & care enough to help solve their true problems.
Buyers are driven by emotion, not how efficiently you pushed them through your revenue funnel.
How to choose between Gong vs Chorus, or an alternative: Pickle
These C.I. tools offer similar functionality across the board, but there are some key differences.
To choose between them, let's set some criteria to evaluate with:
- Ideal Use Case: The primary users of the platform. Who is it actually built for?
- App Experience: How easy is it to navigate the app? Can your grandma log in and quickly feel comfortable with the basics? Or are multiple onboarding courses required to learn? If users get frustrated immediately, adoption will be low, leading to wasted budget.
- Features: What can I do with the software? How is it solving my problem? If not, why do I need all the bells & whistles?
- Getting Started/Pricing: What does it take to get signed up? How much budget will it eat up? Will my team get its money's worth?
- Growth: What happens after my sales hire moves past onboarding? Will they use this app like seasoned pros? Do they collaborate with other teams?
Breakdown: Gong vs Chorus, & Pickle
Ideal Use Case
You don't need to look further than Gong's Super Bowl commercials to know who they target: Sales leaders & new sales reps at enterprise companies.
They provide business executives a clear picture across all revenue activities (except for marketing). They help managers with onboarding a constant influx of inexperienced sales hires.
The product is relatively easy to navigate after a few training sessions.
You're able to filter through a call database, account history (calls & emails), & training libraries.
It may not be 100% obvious how to utilize high-level features during the initial login, you will pick it up after a while.
Some drawbacks (according to G2 reviews): the recording bot occasionally joins meetings late (if at all), the transcript is not always accurate, rep adoption is low & the search functionality can struggle to find exact results.
Gong's feature set is broken into 3 areas:
Deals & Forecasting: see what deals are in play & at-risk according to your CRM data & their machine learning models.
Team Coaching: spot topic trends, review team member patterns, & provide insights & feedback.
Strategic Initiatives: similar to team coaching, understand what topics & trends lead to higher win rates.
Some drawbacks (according to G2 reviews): revenue forecasting can be inaccurate at times. Smaller companies don't utilize all the bells & whistles to justify the cost. Ends up becoming an expensive Zoom transcription.
You won't see how much Gong costs on their website.
The only way to receive a quote or kick off a free trial is by going through the traditional sales process.
Being enterprise-focused, you will have to dedicate a significant amount of budget & agree to rigid terms.
Their rate ranges around $1,400 per seat/per year. Add the $5,000 base fee just to kick things off. Not ideal for mid-market, S.M.B.s, or startups.
The platform is not a simple plug & play.
You will need a few onboarding sessions to connect integrations & configure your account. Not to mention getting sales pros to actually use it.
According to reviews, customer success & support can be underwhelming if you're not a big client.
Gong is great for managers with consistent hires that have to sell quickly. It can cut onboarding in half & make it repeatable.
However, most customers with seasoned sales pros tend to under-utilize the software because "they know how to sell".
This is a positioning reality considering Gong pushes their product as a high-level insight & coaching solution for high-turnover sales functions.
Ideal Use Case
Chorus positions itself as a more sophisticated, elegant platform for large business clients.
From the brand look & feel on every marketing channel, Chorus is meant for the buttoned-up executive of a large corporation. This person wants to know what's happening on their selling floor.
This persona was doubled-down on when they sold to ZoomInfo (Z.I.).
Unfortunately, this once-great emerging leader has become more of an "add-on" or “perk” offering of buying Z.I., than a standalone software.
Think adding queso to your Chipotle bowl.
This post sums up Chorus’ current buyer journey:
The platform is relatively straightforward to use once you get the hang of it.
You're able to filter through a call database, account history (calls & emails), see deal progression & build playlists.
Some drawbacks (according to reviews): the UI/UX can be cleaner, more simplified. The recording bot sometimes joins meetings late (if at all). The transcript is not always accurate, & the Insights can be hard to trust because they're often assigned to the wrong person in the meeting.
Chorus' feature list is broken into 3 areas:
Onboarding & Skill Development: get automatic recommendations on training moments for recent hires.
Deal Visibility: quickly read through & understand what deals are in play or what's at risk.
Market Intelligence: understand how your business fits into your market by spotting topic trends throughout conversations.
Some drawbacks (according to G2 reviews): the analytics can be inaccurate & not as useful as Gong's service. It can be difficult to access the transcripts. S.M.B.'s & startups don't use a lot of the functionality; making it a premium cost for less ROI.
Similar to Gong, they don't include how much Chorus costs on their website.
Researching available info, the cost ranges around $1,200 per seat/per year.
However, after the ZoomInfo acquisition, the updated pitch is to buy Z.I. & get Chorus included as an "add-on".
Calculating the above chart, you will need AT LEAST $22,995 ($14,995 + $8,000) ear-marked in the annual budget if you want to add 3 Chorus licenses.
To add more people, it will be an additional $1,200 for each. Ideal for large mid-market & enterprise.
The solution is not a simple plug & play either. You will need a few onboarding sessions to connect integrations & configure your account. Then get the team to use it.
Reviews describe implementation as being a bit rough. Leading customers to have to trial & error, in the beginning, to get initial issues worked out.
They are great for managers who already have ZoomInfo & have consistent hires that have to sell quickly. It can cut onboarding in half.
However, most Mid-Market, SMB & startup teams with seasoned salespeople or limited budgets tend to under-utilize both ZoomInfo & Chorus for the cost.
Our mission is to serve the pros in the trenches daily with the right software they will actually log into. In addition, we provide powerful insights for sales leaders with limited bandwidth.
Pickle is designed with simplicity in mind.
Too often, the software takes months to implement & adapt within any organization, let alone across every team.
Connect to Zoom to Pickle in seconds. Pull in meetings & get value the same day you sign up.
Meetings are transcribed & analyzed in Pickle minutes after you end the Zoom. Re-live any 30-minute meeting in 2 minutes with ease.
Some drawbacks: being a startup ourselves, some integration functions outside of Zoom are being built out. With Salesforce & Zapier coming soon, the experience will be taken to the next level.
Pickle's features -- before, during, & after your meetings:
Before: prep for every conversation & never forget key talking points with Templates.
During: focus on the meeting, not scribbling notes. Mark every key moment with a simple click with Smart Notes.
After: find & re-live from any Zoom instantly or days, weeks, months later. Clip & share key moments anywhere your team lives.
Spot topics & trends across every meeting, so you can keep a pulse on what's working & what isn't.
Some drawbacks: you won't have the ability to forecast every deal in the pipeline. This will come with deeper CRM connections.
We believe software costs should be open & transparent. Check out our Pricing page for a clear cost breakdown of Pickle.
High-level: User & teams have full access for $68/per seat/per month annually.
There are no onboarding costs like Gong & you don't have to buy another platform to access us like Chorus.
We also include Engagement licenses (people who just require meeting access) free of charge.
Pickle is designed to be simple, connect & go. With single licenses, connect to Zoom in a few clicks & pull in meetings in seconds.
Teams will join a quick onboarding call with us to begin & they're off to the races after that.
Drawbacks: we lack a massive customer success team like our alternatives. But average a 1-minute response time on our in-app chat with any questions you have. From there we can share the right help articles & videos to solve any issue.
Pickle serves as a great resource for new hire onboarding. However, our solution is meant to be a productivity sidekick for seasoned sales pros with limited bandwidth.
Our mission is to be a resource SMB companies utilize every day & grow alongside your team.
We demonstrate this by optimizing every aspect of your Zoom relationships & making it a breeze to share your customer's powerful voice anywhere the team lives.
Gong vs Chorus: both are great options. There's a reason they've been market leaders in this fast-moving sector for years now. But how do you choose?
- If you're a large enterprise with a sizable sales tech budget looking to gain visibility into your pipeline: go with Gong.
- If you already have ZoomInfo, you might as well pay the extra fee & add Chorus.
- If you're a Mid-Market, SMB, or startup looking to maximize team productivity. While making it easy to re-live any meeting instantly; without spending your entire budget...go with Pickle. See for yourself!