All-Virtual New Year’s Closin’ Eve: Take Two

December 31st is no ordinary day at ZoomInfo. Years ago, it was renamed New Year’s Closin’ Eve — a day full of celebration, selling, and the occasional celebrity cameo. 

Traditionally celebrated in-person, the holiday was held virtually for the second year in a row, but that didn’t stop the party. 

New Year’s Closin’ Eve 2021 was a huge success thanks to a thoughtful and meticulous team determined to close out another year with laughter and excitement. 

Here are just a few elements that made the day special. 

Fresh Take on Tradition 

In 2020, ZoomInfo had many rewatchable moments (like our company IPO) that helped fill time and keep production moving. This year, the producers worked hard to create completely original, never-before-seen content. As you can imagine, it was quite the undertaking, but it paid off. 

“We knew coming off the success of last year that we had to do it again,” says Lauren Penney, a sales enablement manager and one of the event’s emcees. “The time we had to plan, the organization we had, the ability to bring in lots of different teams, just made this year that much better.”

They created an entertaining mix of fresh content and updated traditions, including celebrating individual milestones like weddings, babies, and new pets. They also kept a live countdown to our sales goal so that every team member could tune in to see how we were tracking and view each sale in real time. 

“I don’t think it will ever feel exactly as it did before COVID until we’re all back together, but it’s a really nice way in quarantine to get us feeling at least halfway there,” Penney says.  

Featured Talent

Teams and individuals showed off their musical talent by singing, dubbing, and dancing to their favorite songs. From a “Mr. Brightside” cover sung by Jo Zichterman, to an original song about our core values performed by various employees, we covered all genres and discovered some great talent across the organization. The video below showcases our sales enablement team and how they’re always around to help, set to the tune of “Help!” by The Beatles. 

Spiffs Galore 

A seemingly endless amount of prizes were given away across our sales and customer support teams. 

Kai’lia Sparks, an instructional designer for sales enablement, hosted various contests throughout the day featuring loads of prizes including company swag, a MacBook Pro, cash, and ZoomInfo shares. And some of the rewards were a bit more out-of-the-box, like the opportunity to choose the outfit for a member of the executive team.

“The executive team really stepped up and gave away some incredible prizes out of their own inventory,” Penney says. “Chris Hayes, our COO, gave away a month with his Porsche.”

The activities ranged from a bracket challenge to superlatives, with individuals from across the organization sharing their most memorable customer and prospect Chorus calls of 2021 in order to win one of 11 titles. Notable winners included Dan Strauss, voted most likely to raise a future ZoomInfo rep, and Miranda Riendeau, who had the best pet cameo on a sales call.

Celebrity Appearances

We had virtual appearances from some legendary stars to encourage our sales team to keep going. Familiar faces made the event feel much bigger than just our company and inspired our team to keep pushing toward their goal. 

Some of the famous names that graced our computer screens include Paula Abdul, Montell Jordan, Carole Baskin, Bruce Buffer, Sugar Ray Leonard, and the late Bob Saget.

Maintaining Motivation

We had motivational interviews with members of our leadership team and board of directors, and individuals on the sales and customer success teams. We shared the truly incredible results of our donation drive, through which we raised $2 million for youth- and family-focused nonprofits across the country. Our CEO, Henry Schuck, kept the team pushing forward with inspirational chats, including reading out real customer reviews that sang ZoomInfo’s praises and investor quotes congratulating everyone on an amazing year.  

That’s a Wrap

Our New Year’s Closin’ Eve tradition will live on. We’re looking forward to the day when we can be back in person for the celebration, but until then, the virtual festivities will continue to bring us together. 

“It’s just a great way to unify the entire company and make sure that we’re ending the year on the same page, moving in the same direction, and starting off 2022 in a really strong, cohesive way,” Penney says.