Video Overview

In the #17 episode of “The B2B Outbound Marketing & Sales Automation Series”, Dancho spoke with the CCO and Co-founder of user.com, Mike Korba.

user.com is a no-code marketing automation and CDP software.
And it’s the platform that helps your team turn touchpoints into experiences.

user.com offers a wide range of features. Some of them are:

  1. Visitor Tracking (User Behavior Tracking, Custom Events, API Integration);
  2. CRM (Custom Attributes, Email Reports, Loss Reason Tracking);
  3. Email Marketing (Templates, A/B Testing, Drag & Drop Builder) &
  4. Automation Chatbot (Bot Message, Answer Condition, Assign Agent).

They have hundreds of integrations, such as Google Tag Manager, Slack, Mailchimp, and Zoom.

But, above all, their values influence every decision they make.

Check them out here!

STAY TUNED for more success stories, tips&tricks, and awesome tools in the B2B Outbound world!

Speakers

Dancho Dimkov - The CEO of BizzBee Solutions

Dancho Dimkov
CEO of BizzBee Solutions

Mike Korba
CCO and Co-founder of user.com

Interview Transcript

[00:00:07.260] – Dancho – Hello, everybody, and welcome to another episode of the B2B Outbound Marketing and Sales Automation Series. By now, you should know my name, Dancho Dimkov, and we do a lot of effort to find the best automation tools out there that could help you and your business to grow faster. When I say the best tools, well, we only show you the best. And for today, I actually have Mike Korba on the call. I wanted to share his story because he is going to present user.com, an automation tool that I believe it could really help you all. Mike, welcome.

[00:00:41.800] – Mike – Thank you for invitation. Very happy to be your guest and be here.

[00:00:47.180] – Dancho – When we started the conversation on LinkedIn, I was like, This could be an interesting episode, but I don’t want to go directly to the automation. I just wanted to first give you the opportunity to present who you are, what you do. So we have the background about you, Mike.

[00:01:03.420] – Mike – I’m co-founder of user.com. We are almost seven years, but rather six years company. We are a marketing automation tool and customer data platform. We gather data about our customers users. We serve e-commerce businesses, mobile application businesses, some marketplaces. We call our ideal persona like Smart Online Business. What user.com does is we are tracking the activity of your users on your website, inside your mobile application, and also in the physical stores, so in point of sales. Also, those data can be sent to us via API, and we track them similar to Google Analytics. Google Analytics tracks each page feed, each event, every action that customer actually perform on your website or inside your mobile application. This is what exactly user.com does. But the difference is that Google Analytics gives you anonymous data and user.com is rather like a CRM for online businesses. We know that like, mike@user.com, this is my email, very simple, have clicked this, have went to this specific website, have added this product to cart. Based on this data, we are able to build personalized experience in many channels like emails, push notifications, SMS notifications, mobile push notifications, but also whole on site communication like live chat, chat bots, web push, or pop ups, landing pages. We are all in one tool for marketing and sales automations. Sometimes we cover also some support or success activities. So we have a knowledge base, we have a ticketing system. So this is what user.com does. And in terms of my story, I joined a startup. user.com was a very small team. I was the oldest one while joining this project and I was the first sales guy. I was selling the product. It turned out that it’s pretty simple to sell it because that technology was great. I thought that I will project some bigger goal and I saw that our customers have problems with getting positive arrow Y from our technology because in the implementation process and planning process was a bit hard for them. I become the first expert of the implementation team and I built whole implementation team. Then I’ve moved, rather, to our marketing supporting sales. Currently, I’m CCO, chief commercial officer. I’m responsible for whole business perspective, like marketing, sales and success and support. Before user.com, I had another startup and previously I was working in advertising agency for more than seven years. Before advertising agency, I was marketing expert. More than 20 years actually in the marketing industry in marketing automation, especially I’m from seven years. This is me.

[00:05:29.210] – Dancho – As I’m listening to you, Mike, because usually when it comes to data, it’s statistics in general. Since you have individual data, you’re actually doing micro targeting hyper personalization messages, not on a based of, I don’t know, gender groups or general interest, but you can see exactly each individual user, what behavioral things they are doing on the website, on the app or anywhere. Based on that trigger different marketing activities. Right?

[00:05:59.820] – Mike – Yeah, exactly. In B2B companies, there are CRMs. So sales guys can write down, I was on the coffee, I was on the call with this customer. He said this and this thing. So the next activity is like calling him in two weeks with a follow up or sending him an offer. In terms of online businesses where we have much wider audience, we have hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions of customers, it’s really hard to do this B2B face to face personalization or tracking. You have to get technology to track your activity. In online businesses like e-commerce or as I said, marketplaces or any smart online businesses, there are platforms which is called CDP, so Customer Data Platform. The platform where automatically you send all the data about your user. You send transactional data, what he has bought, but you can drop also behavioral data. So what he actually perform on your website in terms of e-commerce, what products you have seen, what products you have added to cart. And based on the data, you can personalize his experience in all the channels of the communication.

[00:07:44.430] – Dancho – That’s really nice, Mike. I’m just curious, personally, how many users do I need to have for this to have sense? Because if I have three clients in total, then I don’t really need the behavioral data to tell me who is doing what. But is there a recommended or minimum amount of traffic or users that are coming to you that it has sense to start utilizing this marketing automation?

[00:08:10.600] – Mike – As I said, our clients sometimes have millions of contacts. Our biggest clients are sending 40 million emails per month. They are really huge, databases of two millions users, three millions users. But this is this upper end, as you said. I wouldn’t say that there is minimum amount of those users. Our service in this minimum package is based on 10,000 contacts. This is a minimum package. If your database is growing, you are paying per thousands of customers. It’s obvious that if you have 100 or 200 customers or potential leads, there won’t be economic… It won’t make sense to invest in such technologies. But if you are counting in of your day contact base in thousands, probably there will be opportunity to automate. Depending on different models and margins in market, it can be different scopes. Because if we are selling, for example, cars through internet or apartments, the value of one potential sale is pretty huge. Those numbers, several thousands of customers, make sense to invest in automation. It makes sense to nurture them. If you have hundreds of customers or hundreds of potential leads, probably it will be like, shooting from like… To a very small target with a really huge gun, so it doesn’t make sense.

[00:10:39.480] – Dancho – That’s why I was curious. On the upper level, of course, the more the marrier, the more data you have, the more personalization. I was curious more on the low end, but I think that now I understand your point. Mike, while we’re discussing about upper lines and lower lines, how is the user.com positioned on the market? There are quite a lot of out of automation tools. Some are into the data platform, some are more on the outreach platform. How is your solution positioned on the market?

[00:11:09.900] – Mike – A couple of years ago, we started as a small startup. We were an alternative to intercom. I don’t know if you are familiar with this software. One of the main channels of the communication was this live chat with chat bots and knowledge base included. We grown as an alternative to intercom. You didn’t have to use intercom with connections to a CRM like pipe drive and to connect it with mail chimp or one signal, you have it in one tool. But this alternative to the intercom at the beginning of our journey was position on the market. But we saw that we’ve built a very big, full of features tool, and our customers weren’t small SaaS businesses who need chat and automatic support, but rather partners who can help them into the process of building this customer centric experience, great customer experience. We rather focus on the bigger customers. Currently, if I would have to mention our biggest competitors, it would be a Marxist. It can be Salesforce Marketing cloud, sometimes Marketo, sometimes Eloqua from Oracle. This is the market we are operating in. And in terms of if you are asking the position, where are we on the market? If you don’t want to go with the Salesforce Marketing cloud, one of three reasons, you don’t want to have a vendor lock because going with such big player is many times going into vendor lock. You have to deliver KPIs in next quarter and you don’t have time for 12 quarters, so three years of the implementation, experimentation phase. You need to don’t over invest in that technology. You are like, value for money, very cautious. Probably, we have a great fit. You are probably online business. Your website or your mobile application are really important in that customer journey. This is our position in terms of positioning over competitors. But in terms of the value we bring is we say that we transform the data chaos into relevant experience without the death time. We are like a no code, low code, API first platform. At the beginning, probably you will need some part of working with your IT team. But after the implementation, the marketer can build all the flows, all the very, very advanced automation flows without any help of IT. This is where we are on the market.

[00:15:19.240] – Dancho – Nice. Mike, I have just one side question that I’m just thinking about. user.com, how did you get your hands on that domain? It looks really precious domain. It’s really not with a lot of letters. You bought the domain from the start. It was the name of the company, user.com?

[00:15:38.250] – Mike – No, the first name was User engage. We started as a user engage.io as a startup seven years ago. Then we decided to buy user engage.com . It’s also a cool name as I guess it was about engaging users. But then at the end of 2018, at the beginning of 2019, we get financial round. We didn’t go with a VC way. We were bootstrapped for quite a long time, but we decided to get around from industry investor. It was Vericom group, so company who invest in email service providers, SMS service providers, push service providers, and they were looking for this CDP marketing automation tool, and they invested in us. We thought, Okay, so when we have money, because we were bootstrapped for a pretty long time, so what could be a good asset for us? Domain was one of them because it’s a red ocean. It’s a very competitive landscape of markets. We have really huge competitors and we’ve decided that a short name will be some way of competing on this market, so we decided to bought it. It wasn’t expensive from my perspective. We paid 150K dollars for it.

[00:17:29.970] – Dancho – That’s expensive for a domain.

[00:17:32.550] – Mike – I think not. I think that it was like four letters in .com with a native meaning. It might sound expensive, but we started negotiations at €400,000 and right now I think the value of the domain is much bigger. So so…

[00:18:00.740] – Dancho – Well, they say now the domains are real estate, so you can buy it, you can keep it and especially user.com is really nice name. That’s why I wanted to ask you. Mike, while we talk about the user.com, I’m sure that the listeners would also like to have a sneak peek of how the software works, what functionalities they can be used. Maybe you can give us a tour of the software of the automation, and what magic it does?

[00:18:27.930] – Mike – Sure. Let me share you screen. As a user.com, we are, as I said, a customer data platform, so we track the activity on the page view, on the website, on the mobile views, mobile application, and we are building that flow in many channels. For purpose of this demo, I will show it on this e-commerce shop. As I said, we grown as an alternative of the intercom, and this live chat with the knowledge base is still a very important channel of the communication among our customers. When we will install this widget on our website through an add on or through Google tag manager, just this pixel from user.com have to be installed on our website, we are tracking our users. This is me on this specific page and you see that if I will enter, for example, the main website, you see in my profile that at December I’ve entered this specific website. If I will go to some product page and add this product to the cart, you can see in my profile that all this activity that I’ve went to this Hummingbird Printer’s sweater and I view this product and I’ve added this product to the cart, everything is visible. You have some attributes of mine. This is my email address. This is not my phone number. I think it was testing. Based on GIOIP, you see that I am currently in Poland, in Warsaw. I’m using the mac OS and the Chrome browser, and all those data are visible. The cool thing is that we are starting tracking users while they are anonymous. When I will enter through the incognito mode through this application, you can see that in the data section, some new user have occurred like indigo tail, random name, first visit from a few seconds ago.

[00:21:14.240] – Dancho – I don’t know who it is.

[00:21:15.930] – Mike – I don’t know who it is, but I can browse this website and I can see some products and those activities are still visible in my platform. If I will come to this website from a specific source, for example, from a specific campaign, UTM Campaign Black Friday, from that specific URL, this information also will be seen in my profile that I came from this specific bulk Friday. And if I will leave my data, it can be leaving my data via chat, it can be submitting some form like test demo podcast@user.com. Yeah. It can be… Yeah?

[00:22:19.630] – Dancho – I was going to say, yes, we’ll update the email now with the profile.

[00:22:24.650] – Mike – Yeah. But the whole history of the user are still visible. You can see from what source I have come. You can easily segment your users. Show me all users to whom I have email. Email has any value and you see that this is a small application, 116 users. But with email, I have 73 of them. But show me all users to whom I have email. Last seen was during last seven days, less than seven days. With those two filtering conditions, I have four users. But you can also filter from this specific product. Show me all users to whom I have email, have been seen through last seven days ago, but also have, for example, added product to the cart, so add product to the cart, which product contains in the name this Hummingbird. Those are two of those users. You can segment your database on the very, very precise way. You can, of course, send… If we have you have those data on one hand, you can send several campaigns. And of course, those messages on inbox, this live chat I’ve written it here with text demo. I can answer it and you will see those answers on this anonymous, couple of seconds ago, user. This is live chat is one of channels of the communication, but you can send also emails campaigns, also SMS, web push, mobile push notification. It’s channels of the communications. You can, of course, send newsletters or some promotional campaigns, most like single ones. You create as similar as an email service provider. You can use some layouts. You can build using a drag and drop builder.

[00:25:05.720] – Dancho – E-mail builder.

[00:25:07.810] – Mike – Email builder. Yeah, you can use some countdown and many features. Even if you have a product, you can use AI and get suggestions what call to action would be a proper one. If you want to be a friendly one, you should start the journey, explored students. If you want to sound bold, you should go with start now and roll today. We have several those AI implementations elements. Of course, you can set up a baby test. You can choose from which SMTP you want to send this email, and you are choosing those users to whom you can send. You can directly filter this specific users, or you can choose some predefined segments you’ve created before which will be connected. But if you, on the first step, want to choose the single campaign like single sendings, but choose the automated one, you see that on the steps, you don’t have this audience. This is where the real magic happens because you can build those customer’s stories, those scenarios of the automations right on the flow. For example, if some person will visit the pricing page, so he enters URL which contains pricing, you can check what do you know about this user? Is he an anonymous user or is he a known one? E mail is unknown and only for this anonymous traffic, you can show him a pop up, 10 ways how to…

[00:27:04.490] – Dancho – ChatBot can write them a message.

[00:27:05.840] – Mike – It can be a chat bot, but it can also be a pop up with some lead generation. If he will submit this pop up, of course, you can send him an email. This is a simple automation. There are some triggers, there are some conditions, and there are some actions, but you can build it much more advanced. For example, after showing this pop up, you can delay it couple of seconds, for example, 10 seconds, then check if this pop up has been submitted or not. If it has been submitted, this journey is covered through this email. But if you haven’t submitted, you can reach out to him via live chat message like, Hey, I see you’re looking at our pricing page. Maybe I can help you. But if he is browsing your website during the night and you don’t want to engage him with automatic messages, you want to send this automatic messages. But seen as it’s actually from the people, you can send it between nine and five, six. I will send it a message out of the actual agent. But besides that, I will send live chatbot message. This chatbot message can build the flow, if he answered this, send him another chat message.

[00:28:43.210] – Dancho – You can build the whole automation sequence.

[00:28:46.150] – Mike – Yeah, you can build the whole automation sequence. Because we are also a simple CRM where you can manage your pipeline. You can create, if it sets, fitting your ideal persona, you can create a deal. You can create automatically an activity for your sales team. You can send emails from your sales team using their email address, like Gmail or Outlook, like, Hi, I saw you talk with our chat bot. Here is my scheduler, so please choose the time you want to fit. You can, of course, notify the agents using email or using some Slack notifications and others, hey, check out this guy, etc. We have a lot of automation templates, depending on the industry and depending on the goal you want to generate. There are prebuild scenarios which can which you can inspire from. Some of them are pretty simple, some of them might be much more advanced. But this is a template which you can adjust to your specific needs. Yeah?

[00:30:17.090] – Dancho – Got it.

[00:30:17.630] – Mike – This is us.

[00:30:18.390] – Dancho – Mike, we are running out of time. I’m looking at the watch. But if I can summarize, so you have data and you have a lot of data. Based on that data, you can do a lot of filtering, so you can segment the market into different, even individual person. From the segment, you can do different campaigns, out of which some can be as a one time, but most can be even like automated campaigns where if this is triggered by this, then do this. If this is triggered by this from the data, or if he clicks here, or if he does a particular activity, you can create different campaigns in real time. It’s not click send a newsletter, but it’s actually live.

[00:30:59.770] – Mike – It’s a real time communication. Rescuing abandoned cards, rescuing abandoned processes, but also onboarding communication when you are creating some account in the service, you can onboard your customers, you can reactivate your customers. For example, if customer was buying several times in your store but he, for some reasons, are not returning currently. You can reach out to him, hey, we miss you. But also many elements of NPS survey, customer satisfaction surveys, everything can be covered by such solution as user.com .

[00:31:46.720] – Dancho – Got it. I was just curious for one more thing, Mike, as I was listening to you. The whole solution is based on data. How did it affected you now that the GDPR, the data protection thing that you need to put permission for the cookies? Is that affecting the businesses now?

[00:32:05.470] – Mike – In terms of like, we are first party data. We are not based on third party data, but we are like a CRM. Depending on the specific use cases, you can say that if people are logging in into your application, those tracking what you are doing, what they are doing inside your store, it’s a similar feature to cameras in the physical store. Of course, people have to accept that cookie policy, but sometimes we have a usage that communications which are sent from such customer data platform are not only marketing communication, but also service communication. In terms of this cookie-less world and customers being more conscious about the privacy and those elements, I would say that when GDPR have came, everybody was thinking, Oh, my God. Such software as user. com will have to disappear. And being honest, the trend was quite opposite because before, if you have another tool for emails, another tool for SMS, another tool for a CRM, and another tool for push notification. And some customer have called you via phone and say, Forget about me, so delete all my data. It was really hard for companies to delete all, Okay, I have phone number, but I don’t know which email address it is. It turned out that our solutions also helps company to be GDPR compliant to get all those rules.

[00:34:27.680] – Dancho – But it makes. Perfect sense, because with the GDPR is how you send data to third parties. And if you don’t use third parties, you have everything in house, while you don’t move the data around to different places, to different companies, but everything is stored in a single place.

[00:34:43.830] – Mike – Yeah. So we are a CRM. So you can have data about your users. And being honest, users expect personalized experiences. So they expect personalized offers and this can be achieved only based on the data you own. Like both laws, of course, the customers are more conscious about the consequences. But if you want to build a great experience, you don’t have to be afraid about those elements. Just have a proper cookies. We are a European company and our databases are in France. We, for the biggest customers, also, we can be self hostets. We can be installed, we are a cloud agnostic, so we can be installed on your bare metal servers, but we can be installed also in your private cloud. From that perspective, only our market is growing thanks to this.

[00:36:03.880] – Dancho – Nice. And Mike one more question before we wrap this up. I was curious about the future plans. Where is this data driven platform/marketing automation headed? 2023 is in front of us. What are the plans for user. com?

[00:36:22.070] – Mike – The last year, we were focusing on loyalty program. Besides of changing some tweaks in our software, like improving the chatbot experience, the loyalty program was one of the biggest feature we delivered in 2020. From the business perspective, we are focusing right now of making a usage of this loyalty program. So combining product recommendations, connecting omnichannel experience from this business perspective. But in terms of where we feel that the change is coming, for sure, it’s AI and everything related to it. We have our own data scientist groups. So right now, our AI was more focused on product recommendations for e-commerce businesses. But what Open AI and chat GPT have shown couple of weeks ago is something that we will definitely try to include in our system because you have to remember, but live chat and this knowledge base is still very important in our service. We are thinking about implementing some elements of machine learning and AI implementation in our tool.

[00:38:12.640] – Dancho – I saw you had already some smart, like, tell me the button to make it more smart.

[00:38:18.410] – Mike – But it’s not only that. Choose the best time to send this email, but also this product recommendation based on this data, what products should be in email. There are small tweaks, but right now, the biggest issue is to create automated answers for all customers.

[00:38:43.770] – Dancho – Mike, we have to finish now because I’m looking at the watch at the same time. I want to make this as exciting recordings as possible, but also not to make them hour long. I would really love to thank you for coming to the show. For everybody that is interested, how they can find a bit more, the website where they can actually go and see a bit more about the user?

[00:39:09.440] – Mike – user.com and schedule a demo is the best way to find something out about our software. And if you want to talk with me about marketing technology, I have the simplest email possible, mike@user.com. I also launched a podcast, it can be found on YouTube, it’s called Martech Well Done. Also on the website, martechwelldone.com, you can subscribe to it.

[00:39:44.710] – Dancho – Nice. Well, I’ll make sure that we add them to the website because we have it on our website, who is the speaker, and several links right underneath you, Mike. Sure. I hope that people that are interested will reach out to you and try to see how they can utilize this technology into their business. Because at the end of the day, the whole purpose of this marketing and sales automation series is to show people what tools are already out there, what platforms or automation usages, so they can actually speed up the growth of their businesses. Mike, thank you very much again for coming to the show and for everybody out there. It was a pleasure presenting this automation user.com, and we stay in touch.

[00:40:28.000] – Mike – Stay in touch. Thank you very much.