We’ve taken the risk and decided to create a new product category, but at the same time we’ve opened ourselves to an incredible opportunity of entering the market with the first ever boxed SaaS solution for e-commerce. We’ve been tempted by the latter.
“If you cannot be first in your category, setup a new category”
That’s what the Law of Category says (“The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing”, Al Ries and Jack Trout). We’ve decided to use it when boldly entering the market with our product – eCRM, a first CRM dedicated to e-commerce. The decision was hard, but we precisely knew what we want to achieve. Our goal was to create a completely new product category, because this was the only way for us to be first on the market and having no competition at the start. At the same time we’ve been aware of the fact that this decision would call for years of educating the market about what eCRM is.
Image 1: Machine learning at edrone: recommendation algorithm in action.
Why have we created a new product category?
On the market there already existed classic CRM software, which had been created mainly for the traders’ needs. There were also Pre-CRM softwares used for prospecting automation which is a process of searching for customers and generating leads for CRM. There were Social-CRM software covering services for B2C clients. However there was no eCRM, which would have been created with the aim of serving only online shops’ customers.
eCRM vs. marketing automation
Some needs, similar to those fulfilled by edrone, are in part realised by marketing automation systems. Thus, at the beginning we felt a temptation entering the market that isn’t completely unknown to customers. It wasn’t a bad idea as, in fact, there wasn’t a boxed SaaS marketing automation solution for e-commerce. We haven’t gone this way, however, as we’d noticed a trend of e-mail marketing systems transforming into marketing automation systems. Competing with them was pointless and could also mislead our customers. After all we’ve created a CRM system. We do have e.g. dynamic newsletter amongst our communication channels, however, we deliver much more. The direction in which our CRM software will develop exceeds the e-mail marketing capabilities. It includes push notifications, chat, product recommendations, wishlist and a lot more.
Image 2: Push Notifications appear on the screen as rectangular announcements. A user will receive them even after leaving the website.
In addition our software has a CI panel (Customer Intelligence) and thanks to that our ready scenarios are launched only when all information about the customer, had been analysed. Then the customers who visit online shop are automatically assigned to a certain category like trendsetters, influencers, VIP programmes etc.
Image 3: Example of messages prepared for A/B test, which differ in one detail.
From the very beginning of building edrone we’ve been creating our original, innovative product. At the start we’ve created a Social-CRM for e-business, which through Lean Startup methodology emerged into eCRM for e-commerce. We will develop edrone eCRM in the direction of rather serving customers and online shops (EPR for e-commerce) than only marketing actions. That’s the only way for us to create one of a kind product that will stand out on the market.
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