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In 2016, I was running a SaaS business, which was struggling due to one big problem: we were based in Sydney, Australia, but our customers and leads were based almost exclusively in New York and London.
When we chatted with customers and leads live—even virtually—we would close sales and create great relationships. But timezones made this nearly impossible. We were having trouble connecting with current customers, retaining those customers, and connecting with new leads in a human way.
That’s when I had a lightbulb moment.
I decided I should send personal videos to connect with my leads and customers when time differences made a call impossible.
One problem: no tools existed for this yet. So I decided to hack something together.
How one Zap sparked a six-figure business
Together, our CTO and I built a little MVP product that would create a task whenever we got a new lead. Once a task was created, we would record a short video for the lead and hit send.
To make this possible, I used Zapier. I connected our Intercom signup form to our MVP Bonjoro app using Zapier: whenever a new lead signed up for our product, I would get notified with a little task in our app, and record my welcome video. Here’s a super simple Zap just like the one I used.
Living in Sydney, I would often record my videos from the ferry on my way to work. It was a fun touch that gave the recipient some insight into my world and helped us connect.
Here’s a recent example to demonstrate what I was doing. We still use the exact same workflow at Bonjoro today.
We continued doing this for three weeks, and then we noticed something kind of amazing: compared to leads that we didn’t send a personal video to, we converted customers at 200%. Two hundred percent.
The other thing that happened was that we would get response after response from our leads and customers asking us how on earth we had created the video.
So like any scrappy startup, we asked every single one of them: “If we build this, will you pay for it?” If they said yes, we asked them to put their money where their mouth was and pay upfront to help us take it from MVP to beta.
Tons of people said yes, so we got to work. Within a few months, we had a working beta—which we’d named Bonjoro—and hundreds of excited customers all ready to go.
But our Zapier love affair didn’t stop there. We had one final trick up our sleeves. Rather than spend time creating native integrations for all of our customers’ tools, we were able to get every single new customer hooked up and running with a flow just like ours by connecting them via Zapier. Zapier makes it easy for us to embed Zaps, pointing customers in the right direction and giving them examples of what they can do with Bonjoro and Zapier together.
So it’s not just us who benefited from Zapier: our entire client base simply wouldn’t have been able to even do the personal video thing without Zapier.
Want to see how Bonjoro customers are using Zapier? Leadership advisor L Michelle Smith swears by her Bonjoro and Zapier connection, and eCommerce store Munk uses the two apps to send personalized thank-you videos to every customer.
Bonjoro still uses Zapier to run its business
By connecting Intercom to Bonjoro via Zapier back in the day, we were able to send videos based on any customer event you can imagine. Bonjoro is now a multimillion-dollar business, and we still use Zapier to help run our business.
For example, whenever a customer reaches 100 videos sent with Bonjoro, Zapier automatically creates a task in Bonjoro to send them a personal video asking them for a review or inviting them to do a case study. If a customer attends a webinar, Zapier creates a Bonjoro task to follow up with them and offer them a trial. And whenever we have new affiliate signups, Zapier creates a task in Bonjoro to send them a personal welcome video and tell them how they can make loads of cash with our program.
This dogfooding of our own product has been the engine for our huge growth as a business.
With Zapier’s help, we have less drip campaigns, less chatbots, less growth hacking, and more personal, human actions, more showing customers we care, and more reminders of why we do what we do. The 15 people on our team can spend their days doing what they love.
If you’ve been inspired by the idea of sending personal videos, but aren’t sure where to start yourself, check out Bonjoro’s video funnel playbook, a handy collection of simple workflows and templates for sales, marketing, and customer success teams.
So there you have it. A simple Zapier workflow hack has now turned into a multimillion-dollar success story, and one of Australia’s fastest growing startups.
And we continue to build for our customers based on that same concept, inspired by Zapier: that a video sent at just the perfect moment can help you build real and lasting relationships with your customers no matter where they live or work.
This was a guest article from Matt Barnett, the founder of Bonjoro, an app for sending personalized videos to convert and support your customers. Want to see your work on the Zapier site? Check out our guidelines and get in touch.
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