FOSTER CITY, CA - (June 5, 2014) AVA.ai, the only provider of lead interaction management software driven by artificial intelligence (AI) for sales, marketing, and customer service organizations, today announced the appointment of Michael E. Donner to senior vice president, chief marketing officer.
In this newly created role, Donner will lead AVA.ai’s marketing and demand generation efforts across its automotive and enterprise units. He will oversee all strategic, operational and financial aspects of the company’s integrated marketing and demand generation programs, including advertising, digital marketing, communications, lead generation, sponsorships, SEO, SEM and other initiatives.
AVA.ai has developed an Automated Virtual Assistant (AVA) that brings advanced AI technology to lead interaction management. Presented as a custom online persona, AVA nurtures leads from interest to intent through natural, two-way email exchanges and automatically sends alerts when a qualified prospect is ready to purchase. AVA helps businesses significantly increase engagement and conversion rates by automatically collecting information and qualifying interest for thousands of leads 24/7 so sales teams can focus their time on closing deals with interested prospects.
“I am happy Michael Donner has joined our executive management team as we embark upon a period of rapid growth,” said Mark A. Bradley, CEO of AVA.ai. “Michael’s branding and marketing experience will be a force multiplier for AVA as we enter new vertical and geographic markets.”
“Michael has a long and proven track record of helping high tech companies grow and succeed though innovative and effective marketing programs,” said Eric Filipek, managing director of Kennet Partners. “With Michael on board, we are excited to see what the future holds for one of the most innovative companies in the Kennet Partners portfolio.”
Despite the proven benefits of marketing automation tools like Marketo, Pardot and Eloqua, there remains a clear disconnect between marketing and sales. While using these tools helps marketing meet its goal of providing a larger volume of leads to sales, sales teams still struggle to make contact with, qualify and prioritize these leads. AVA’s AI-based platform is unique in that it automates the final stages of the sales cycle – lead contacting, engagement, qualification, nurturing, prioritizing, and follow-up – so only prequalified hot leads with intent to purchase are handed over to sales. As such, AVA represents the missing piece of a complete lead management solution that works in conjunction with marketing automation and customer relationship management applications.
“AVA.ai is revolutionizing the efficiency and effectiveness of sales teams through the application of artificial intelligence technology,” said Michael E. Donner. “I am looking forward to building upon the momentum that has already been created and raising awareness of what AVA can do for enterprise sales and marketing organizations around the world.”
Donner has more than 20 years of marketing, inside sales and demand generation experience with high-tech companies. Prior to joining AVA.ai, he was senior vice president, CMO at cyber security firm Prolexic, a Kennet portfolio company, until Akamai Technologies acquired it for US$370 million earlier this year. Before joining Prolexic, Donner ran Competitive Marketing Advantage, a consulting company, and served as the interim head of marketing for Tech Data, Thales e-Security and IntelliDOT Corporation. He has also held executive roles at Capgemini, Eclipsys Corporation and Telelogic AB. Donner has a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing, management and international business from Babson College in Wellesley, Mass.