Jun 4, 2024

Jun 4, 2024



Aditya Khargonekar

Aditya Khargonekar

Basic account research with Perplexity AI

Basic account research with Perplexity AI

Account Research

Account Research


This post is first in a series on how AI can help with various aspects of researching an account, one of the core parts of the job of a sales rep. As a sales rep, it’s important to really understand your customers: their business, their goals, their fears. The more you understand them, the better you’ll be able to help them and in turn earn their trust because your approach is authentic to their specific needs — they’ll feel like you’re part of the team, not just another vendor.

  • Part one: Basic account research with Perplexity.ai

  • Part two: Analyzing a 10-K with ChatGPT

  • Part three: Analyzing an earnings call transcript with ChatGPT

We’re starting with some fundamentals: learning about a company’s overall business (what they do, who they serve, etc) and health (revenue growth, etc). We’re writing as if we’re an Endgame sales rep who was just assigned Zscaler as a new prospect to go after, but the rep doesn’t know much about them.

What are some basics we want to learn about? Why?

Here are a few things that can help you understand a company.

  • What does the company do?

  • Who are their leaders?

  • Who are their customers?

  • What are their objectives?

Typically, you would need to read a company’s website, search for relevant news articles and analyst reports, and more. In the past, it would have taken a lot of time to learn all this stuff — traversing news, company website, analyst reports, and more. AI makes it a lot quicker now. We’re not going to cover every question here, but we’ll give you the gist of how simple it can be.

Again, as an Endgame sales rep, we’ve got a narrow focus — for example, we really will only focus on go to market leadership and strategies. If we were selling HR or IT solutions, we’d focus on different parts of the company using the same core questions.

Which tool are we using?

Here, we’re using Perplexity because it is very good at quickly aggregating and summarizing public web results, whereas a tool like ChatGPT is better suited to work on a well-defined data set. We’ll use ChatGPT in a future post about researching earnings call transcripts and 10-Ks.

You’ll notice that we often ask Perplexity to keep its answers short and simple. Without specific guardrails, answers may be lengthy and complex, potentially slowing down your research efforts.

This is a good time to caveat: check the results. Sometimes, an AI tool may cite sources that are old or not reliable. Sometimes, it may misinterpret its sources even if the sources are legitimate. In such cases, it can help to be specific about acceptable data sources (e.g. limit the time range or give the tool specific links to analyze), rephrase your questions to be as specific as possible, and see if the tool can adjust. Regardless, we strongly advise a quick check of sources to ensure the analysis is trustworthy.

Lastly, before we proceed, please note that AI is inherently non-deterministic. You very likely won’t get the exact same answers as we show in screenshots below even if you put in the exact same prompt, but you should be very close!

Research with Perplexity

What does the company do?

It’s as simple as asking. Note that I asked Perplexity to simplify its answer because Zscaler’s products can be pretty technically complex and my goal is to simply and quickly understand the purpose of the business.

This is a great illustration of the power of AI. As noted, you’ll want to fact check, but you’ve quickly gotten a pretty good sense of the mission of a complex, technical company with a broad product suite and customer base. It’s useful to know their products could theoretically appeal to nearly any modern company, which implies potential for lots of go to market activity across industries, segments, and geographies.

Now, as an Endgame sales rep, I’m curious about their GTM leadership, who their customers are, and how they make money. Let’s dig in!

Finding out about their leadership

It’s important to pause and note how simple and direct these questions are. The amount of information we’re quickly getting is pretty remarkable. We learned with one quick search that Zscaler has new GTM leadership in Mike Rich who has already started bringing in additional leadership and driving a strategy change.

How do they plan to grow revenue?

As an Endgame sales rep, this is our core interest. Understanding growth opportunities will help us get a sense of where we might be able to help. As a reminder, if you were researching from the perspective of selling HR tools, you might be more interested in headcount plans, geographic expansion, etc.

Gold mine! They have lots of opportunity to grow more through strategies Mike Rich, found earlier, is leading. As an Endgame sales rep, I’m pretty excited — we see they are trying to both expand into mid-market as well as verticals where penetration is lower, and they also are focused on expansion of customers on their platform. Plenty of ways in which they likely need help from Endgame. Let’s see if AI can help frame all that up!

Hypothesis formation

Now that Perplexity has helped us figure out Zscaler’s priorities, we could take a shot at forming a draft message their leadership might respond to within the same chat. You'll note the prompt is pretty hefty, but being explicit can help quickly get you to the output you want.

Not bad! Needs some work, but a good starting point that fits Endgame solutions against specific strategies the prospect is pursuing, which hopefully gets them to pay attention since it’s so relevant to them.

There’s plenty more you can do to keep learning about the company and industry. Hopefully you’ve got the gist about how powerful AI can be — doing this work in the past may have required hours of searching and reading, but only takes a few minutes now.


As noted, we wrote this from an Endgame perspective. However, there was so much information we just found that could be taken in many directions. For example, if your company sold international HR and payroll solutions, you might have been intrigued by their international customer base and dug into whether they were hiring employees nearer their customers. Or if you are an agency helping companies with marketing strategy and campaigns, you might have spent more time digging into the new CMO's strategy, how they position vs competitors, and how they aim to stand out in market more. Our goal here was to show you how a few simple questions can take you a long way. Hopefully these prompts inspire your own research!

Now that we’ve (hopefully) helped you replace a basic but lengthy Google search with AI to get the basics on an account, let’s get into the next step: analyzing a 10-K, which often has a lot of extra detail you don’t easily find in simple news articles and press releases and takes a bit more intentionality to process. Over time, we’ll also show you how to fold all this account research into an account plan, which AI tools can also help you build more quickly.

Special thanks to Nik Atrey from Stytch and Greg Walder from TextExpander for reviewing this post!

Automate your account research and planning with AI

Legal & security

© 2024 Endgame

Legal & security

© 2024 Endgame

Legal & security

© 2024 Endgame