We signed up for Kissmetrics, got overwhelmed, and then almost left. I’ll tell you why we almost left. Then I’ll tell you what made us stay, and how it might relate to what you’re doing as a business.
I originally signed up with Kissmetrics to use on our new team management and collaboration platform – Yalla. We built Yalla internally for ourselves as a marketing agency trying to scratch our own itch. So… we were very familiar with the various analytics tools on the market, especially Google Analytics. But when we built Yalla, it didn’t seem like any of our analytics tools we’re helping us make good decisions for our business. We had serious trouble understanding new and existing user behavior within our site and application.
We’re like any other startup Saas company that is desperately trying to get new customers. But it wasn’t doing us any good to get new customers if we had no idea how these new customers were interacting with our website and our application. We’re going against the behemoths in our market that spend millions of dollars each month on internet marketing to get new leads. We’re like dogs, just trying to get a few scraps from the table. Needless to say, we’re underdogs, and we don’t have the time or money to waste on losing potential customers to our competitors because we aren’t properly analyzing how people are finding us, why they’re leaving us, or why they’re staying with us.
So when I signed up for Kissmetrics, I was really excited about the idea of understanding people…rather than just numbers. We needed to understand the “people” that were giving Yalla a try. People are what turn your application into a success. Not users. There’s a big difference. Users are faceless unique identifiers. People become raving fans and tell their friends. Turning users into people is the great secret of the best startups.
At one point, I was just a “user” to Kissmetrics. Just a faceless name who paid the bill, implemented the software, but never did much with it because of a busy schedule and a brief learning curve. I was going to cancel and just move on because I was only seeing abut 1% of what the application could do for our business.
Kissmetrics had reached out to me on multiple occasions to set up a demo and do some training, but I was too busy and never got back to them. Time went by and I began to wonder what the Kissmetrics platform was actually doing for us. I began to think that the platform might be limited, but had a sneaky suspicion I was underutilizing the application.
So I finally scheduled a demo with Jimmy at Kissmetrics. I was 10 minutes late because I completely forgot that I had the demo, but when I joined the call, there was Jimmy, patiently sitting there on the conference bridge waiting for me to join. As I synced up with him on the join.me for a screen share, Jimmy didn’t take me through some sort of canned demo. He didn’t try to shove a bunch of scripted garbage down my throat, or throw a bunch of “cool features” at me. He simply opened my account and tried to learn how he could help our business. He listened, answered, and made intelligent suggestions.
Jimmy being the nice guy that he is, helped me analyze our business in light of the various experiences he’s had. He was able to open my eyes to various opportunities within the application the were applicable specifically to us, and our business. He was able to draw upon the successes he’s seen with other Saas companies, and give us guidance that we probably would have paid for in excess of the Kissmetrics application itself.
I’ll probably never meet Jimmy in person, but Jimmy can teach every company a valuable lesson. The lesson is that regardless of how amazing your product is, you still need to nail the human side of things. Kissmetrics is a great tool, but I was probably going to leave because I never took the time to get to know it properly. It didn’t matter how good the tool was. That few minutes with Jimmy, on a screen share renewed my desire to get to know our customers as “people,” and not just as “users.” It turned out that Kissmetrics the application, and Jimmy the cust-serv-rep both shared a common goal. That is, turn the user into a person, and then help that person succeed. Most companies think that if their technology is sweet enough, that they can ignore the human aspect of their business. The great companies know that this can never be the case.
Jimmy… helping me understand how to improve my business, is the real product behind what made Kissmetrics great to me. And isn’t it like that for each of our businesses? This is especially true in the software as a service world where lots of people won’t necessarily understand the value your application has to offer when they first login, regardless of how easy it is.
This was how Kissmetrics turned us into fans. Not by the software itself, (which is great,) but by helping me see hidden potential within our own application.