Startup Lessons Learned: The Culture of Customer Success

I love Italy, my wife and I enjoy visiting every year. There’s one thing – in addition to the awesome pizza – that astounds me about screen-shot-2016-09-16-at-4-39-47-amthe country; the culture of service. It got me thinking: in this day and age of doing everything in a faceless business world, how can you have great service and ‘customer success’?

On the Isle of Capri there is a wonderful wine bar, Capannina Bar, it’s been there forever. It’s one of the only places open all year round. The island closes to tourists November to March so the locals need a place to go. On a recent visit, we were walking down the tiny street and we saw our friend Benny who is the bartender. She was delivering glasses of wine and chips to a local store owner for them and their customers. Wow, that’s double service, not only is Benny serving the store owner, the store owner is ordering wine for their customers. And it just comes natural to them. Try ordering a ‘to go’ delivery of drinks from your bar and see what happens!

What To Do?

As a business who develops apps we unfortunately don’t have a bunch of Bennys around. So how do you go above and beyond expectations to service customers who you may never talk to let alone see? It’s vital to instill a culture of customer success.

Here’s what we focused on at Dasheroo:

  • Alf, our VP of Customer Success, answers emails fast! Expectations these days are, you get an automated email then in about a day you might get someone to get back to you. Not Alf, he knows data is important to make decisions and people need answers…fast. We use Zendesk.
  • If anyone wants to talk to us we set up a Grasshopper phone system (cheap!) and it’s so flexible. You can forward to a live phone within certain hours or only allow folks to leave messages. When someone leaves a message an email is sent to multiple people so we can get back to them fast. Mimi, our Sales Director is like lightning.
  • Alf proactively reaches out to people who seem to need some help with Dasheroo (they created an account but are inactive) with Calendy. They can schedule time with him to go over any questions they have and make sure they get the most value from Dasheroo!

What is your service culture? Please share!

Learn From Big Brands to Boost Instagram Rates

The growth of Instagram has been nothing short of amazing.

The social media platform launched on October 6, 2010 and reached the one million user mark on December 21 of the same year.

Fast forward to today and here are some statistics that’ll knock your socks off:

  • 500 million + monthly actives
  • Large audience outside of the United States.
  • 95 million + photos and videos added each day

With all this in mind, now’s the time for your company to get involved. This means a couple of things:

  • Keeping a close eye on your Instagram rates.
  • Knowing what is and isn’t working for other brands.

Below, we’ll examine three Instagram accounts that can teach you something important (and useful)! Hopefully it will help boost your own Instagram rates. Let’s get started.

National GeographicInstagram rates: National Geographic

While there’s a lot to like about this Instagram account, which can be seen by its nearly 60 million followers, there’s one lesson that stands out in the crowd: don’t be afraid to post photos shared by others.

It goes without saying that you’ll post your own photos from time to time, but encouraging submissions, such as from your customers, is a great idea.

FrootiInstagram Rates: Frooti

Even if you don’t know the first thing about this India-based fruit drink company, you can learn from their Instagram account.

The one thing that stands out is the use of unique images with a bright, cartoon-like feel. Not only does this allow the company’s personality to shine through, but it makes for a distinct and unique experience.

SpotifyInstagram Rates: Spotify

There is more to Instagram than posting photos, and Spotify proves this to be true by sharing videos on a regular basis.

In our mind, variety is always a good thing. Spotify never hesitates to share a high quality video, many that generate thousands of views and quite a few comments.

As you continue to grow your own Instagram account, don’t hesitate to take inspiration from these three brands. They’re doing something right!

When you add this strategy to a regular review of your Instagram analytics, you’ll find this social media platform providing you with many opportunities.

Track Our Startup: Track KPIs Faster + Update on Next Release

Gene Wilder MemeThe kids are back to school and team Dasheroo is cranking away at all of the things we need to do to finish out the year with a BANG. We want tracking KPIs to be the best experience ever!

Face-to-Face

James is coming to the Bay Area in a week (he’s in Austin if you didn’t know) and we’re getting together to chat about the future of Dasheroo. I mean we do standups every day and we have weekly meetings on Zoom,  but there’s nothing like looking at each other while you talk about important stuff. Should be a great time and ideas will flourish. Probably some great food will be consumed as well if you know us.

Next Release

We’ve been wrestling with the decision of releasing the next performance upgrade so tracking your KPIs will be faster, or focus on getting new insights for Active Campaign and Google Analytics out the door. And even though James made some good progress on performance upgrades through the weekend he did hit some snags. Par for the course. We decided to refocus on remaining work that needs to be done on Active Campaign. So we’re working hard to try and get a release out this week.

Sales & Customer Success

September is off to a good start on the sales front. We’ve got an active pipeline of sales and it’s looking good to grow month over month. (See we’re tracking our own KPIs!) We already told you that Alf was working to get our newest customers trying to set up appointments with him using Calendy. It’s not totally working as good as we like so now he’s going to try to reach out to users who signed up but aren’t active. We’ll see what happens there. Maybe we’ll get some users becoming active after they chat with him. Alf is super friendly!

Thanks Agency Users!

We’ve been meeting with a few of our Agency users over the last few weeks.  They are giving us hugely valuable feedback on what they like and what they’d like to see in Dasheroo. Thank you!

Startup Lessons Learned: Can You Be a “Friendly” Boss?

startup lessons learnedI was recently spending time with a good friend of mine, he’s a hot shot professor of design in Switzerland.  Tom also has his own design firm and had just brought on a couple interns. He was talking to me about an issue he had with them.
Tom had invited them out for a night of fun – drinking & dancing to a well-known DJ going late into the night. But there was an initial agreement. If he allowed them to join him, that the next day they needed to deliver some initial design comps for a new product line. And…they kind of dropped the ball. Our buddy is a very nice guy, and was feeling frustrated about the line between ‘friends/friendly’ and being an effective manager.
It brought up a dilemma many managers face – can you be friends with your employees? My buddy Kevin O’Leary (Shark Tank, Mattel) says “your employees are not your friends” and I get it. It can remove objectivity and jeopardize your business decisions. But, if you already crossed that line,  how do you manage this issue to success?
It’s actually very simple in theory, but 100% necessary to execute, especially if you are a ‘friendly’ type of manager:
  • Establish clear goals from the beginning – don’t beat around the bush
  • Lead by example – have fun but get your business shit done
  • Address & resolve any issues immediately – nip any issues, even if they seem minor, in the bud. Once you let something slide, you are on your way to failure. Your employees deserve to know your thoughts so they have a chance to improve.
  • Establish boundaries and if they re not respected you have the wrong people, friends or not
  • And, if it isn’t working, take the hit – fire if necessary. BUT take a close look at yourself and change your management style. Because it’s all about Business First.
Hey, I’ve lost friends because I had to fire them, and wish I would have never hired them in the first place. So don’t misplace friendship for objective business decisions and for new folks you hire, it’s OK to be ‘friendly’, but watch that line!

Google Sheets, a Google Dashboard, and Your Sales Team

You can learn a lot through the implementation of a Google dashboard. From analytics to AdWords, there’s always another piece of data calling your name.

Recently, at Dasheroo, we released a new Google Sheets feature that you’re going to be excited bout. Here’s what we had to say about it:Screen-Shot-2016-08-25-at-8.30.52-AM

“Now you can track multiple KPIs on ONE chart in your dashboard, up to 5 in fact. So if you want to see how one metric is performing right alongside others, this is the way to do it.”

We can think of many ways this feature will come in handy, especially in regards to your sales team.

With multi-metric tracking, you have the opportunity to track up to five different metrics in one chart. It really is that simple. Take a look for yourself and add this one to your Google dashboard.

With this in mind, let’s take a look at a few ways it can be used to track sales performance and improve results.

1. Track Sales Revenue by Rep

You have many people on your sales team. You know some are performing up to par, while others are lagging behind the group.

With this Google Sheets feature, you can track your salespeople’s revenue against each other.  This allows you to see who’s performing best and who needs to pick up the slack.

2. Track Sales Over Time

At the end of each month (or any other interval), you can use this feature to see how each salesperson is performing as compared to the past.

Is one salesperson consistently making more sales than the month before? Is another experiencing a slow and steady drop-off? Tracking them all in a single graph makes it easy to identify quickly who is doing what.

3. Product Sales

What product performs best for your company? What product is on the verge of being discontinued?

If you can’t answer this question, it may be because you’ve yet to track product sales over a particular period of time.

Our newest feature makes it simple to track up to five product sales, giving you a clear idea of which ones generate the largest percentage of revenue.

Getting started is as simple assigning up for an account, creating a Google dashboard, and using this feature to track a variety of sales data. What are you waiting on?

Track Our Startup: Active Campaign + More Performance Upgrades

We’re still gearing up for a release hopefully in the next week with Active Campaign, some Google Analytics insights for your Google Dashboard and maybe a new billing tier. Stay tuned.

Customer Success

Alf our VP of Customer Success has set up a “Calendy” campaign where he sends email to our paying customers to see if they need any help with their onboarding experience. If you get an email from him and want to chat take him up on it it’s fun, just schedule a meeting based on when he’s available! Now he’ll be reaching out to people who have gone inactive to see if he can get them active with us again.

Better Performance

James our VP of Engineering worked on another round of performance fixes for dashboard loading. This is an extension of performance fixes he did two weeks ago. He’s addressing the amount it time it takes to load a new new data that comes in the dashboard. Speaking of James, he’s coming to San Francisco this month, always awesome to see him, he lives in Austin. More on our meetings later!

Since we have a bunch in the queue we’re focusing on potentially getting this performance stuff out first in the next few days before our integrations.Active Campaign Apps Marketplace

New Marketplace

We had an awesome meeting with Active Campaign speaking of new integrations. Apparently they are hearing  a lot of requests for Dasheroo. They seem excited to list us for their marketplace but not more excited than us! 

Ok, time to get back to it. Cheers!

New Features Offered by Dasheroo Email Marketing Partners

At Dasheroo, we take great pride in the fact that our dashboards integrate with many of the top email marketing platforms.

It doesn’t matter if you’re new to email marketing or have been relying on this strategy for many years, there’s always room for growth.

In this post, you’ll see the newest features offered by Dasheroo’s top email marketing partners. Let’s get started!

Constant ContactVideo: what's new with Constant Contact email marketing

Last month, the Constant Contact team shared a blog post about a few recent changes and additions.

If you don’t have time to watch the video about the newest features, here’s a few to get excited about:

  • Next-Generation Editor
  • Advanced reporting features
  • New PDF Importer

Thanks to new features like these, it’s easy to see why Constant Contact remains a major player in the email marketing space.

Get your free Dasheroo dashboard for Constant Contact!

AWeber

For many years, AWeber has been a top choice of internet marketing professionals and small business owners. There’s many reasons for this, including the fact that the platform is always updated with advanced features.

Most recently, the company announced two new features:Aweber feature: tags for email marketing

  • The ability to use tags to trigger multiple campaigns (more here) – What’s great about this is that if you want to target a group of people on your list you can use tags, you no longer need to spin up a new list every time you need to deliver a new series.
  • An update to the Broadcast Archive feature (more here)

These features, among others, have been rolled out this summer. And if you know anything about AWeber, you know its next announcement will be coming soon.

Get your free Dasheroo dashboard for AWeber! 

Campaign MonitorVidoe: Campaign Monitor Marketing Automation Email Marketing

Overlooked by some, provider for small businesses, in fact we use them from time to time here at Dasheroo.

You can review all of its features here, including those that have been recently added to the platform.

Recently, they released a few marketing automation tools for its users it’s pretty slick. Check out the video.

Campaign Monitor also introduced its new App Store with more than 200 partner apps and integrations.

Get your free Dasheroo dashboard for Campaign Monitor!

VerticalResponseVerticalResponse Pro feature - email marketing

For email and social media marketing, VerticalResponse is hard to beat. Not only is the platform simple to use, regardless of experience, its feature list is always growing.

They just introduced its Pro+ features. With this full service approach to email marketing, users can take advantage of many benefits:

  • Save you time
  • Save you money
  • Generate top notch results

If you don’t have the time, experience, or desire to manage your own email and social media marketing campaigns, Pro+ is an option to consider.

Get your free Dasheroo dashboard for VerticalResponse.

Remember, no matter which one of these email marketing providers you choose, you can bring your data into your Dasheroo dashboard, free!

Track Our Startup: Performance Boost + August Rocked!

Well now that our last release is behind us here at Dasheroo, there’s a new one coming! We’re going to be adding a new pricing tier between FREE and $19 so be on the lookout for that. We’re also working on performance for your dashboards, killing some nasty bugs some users have experienced (sorry!), and our new integration with one of our most requested apps, Active Campaign, CRM for small business.

We think that we boosted performance for loading your dashboards by anywhere from 10-20%. So you should see your dashboards loading at a quicker pace. Thanks James! He’ll be looking at a few other places in our code where we can optimize performance. Everybody needs a speedy dashboard.quickbooks online logo - dasheroo dashboards

We’re doing some research on what new insights for QuickBooks Online users might want. We even asked our own internal accountants to weigh in. More on that as we know more.

Thanks to Nivi for reaching out to all customers who have asked for multi metric tracking in a Google Sheet. If you don’t know about it, it’s awesome.

Our summer started slow but man did it end on a high note. We got the most new customers in a given month ever. And Mimi killed it with her sales number as well. Way to go!

September is gearing up to be bigger and better so we have to get back to work!

Startup Lessons Learned: Don’t Underestimate the Power of Video

This week’s startup lesson learned will be short and sweet. It’s about video. A lot of folks think that video marketing is hard and that creating videos takes a lot of work and money. Well, that’s just not true! While it does require time and effort, it really can both make and save you money.

And it’s not only about going viral on YouTube, in fact here at Dasheroo while we have our own YouTube channel we use videos for a variety of uses.

Here’s how we roll:

Support Videos

Dasheroo YouTube Analytics

Our Google Sheets integration gets a ton of views, digging in we made a few additions to the feature!

We have some features that can be a bit advanced for some users. Creating a step-by-step video for them to understand how to use a specific feature is critical to getting usage of our application. We look at Total Views in our Dasheroo YouTube dashboard so we see what features are most popular. Those features might actually need more work since what we offer might not be intuitive or useful enough.

This is a huge money saver since we don’t have a big support team to handle questions, and users can access the information whenever they need it.

Marketing VideosZapier Dasheroo set up guide video marketing

Alf creates videos for some of our partners so they can put it on their site to get the word out about our integration. This one he did for Zapier got a ton of views and it really helped Zapier market our integration as well, bonus!

He’s also done a “3 Minute Tip: Stocks on your Dasheroo Dashboard with IFTTT & Google” which was a fun way to use your dashboard with 3rd party products.

We love his videos, they’re personable and short, we try to keep them under 3 minutes. Alf uses Screenflow for that and it’s only $99. It has lots of bells and whistles but is still easy enough for anyone.

This is a money maker since we do get some SEO juice from the videos and we do get new users from our awesome partners who post and share these videos.

Internal Videos

Josh creates videos internally to show us a new feature before it’s live. It’s been hugely helpful for both his product team and the rest of us as we get ready to market and sell. Josh uses Jing for that and it’s free up to 5 minutes of video.

We also outsource tasks to a virtual assistant group (VA Staffer) and we create how-to videos for them. It’s great since we only really have to create the video once. In the event one of our virtual assistants is on vacation or out, we don’t have to get on the phone for a training again. They just refer to the video.

These are enormous money savers. Why? Time is money and we have neither to waste!

New Release: New Google Sheets Feature + QuickBooks Online!

We’ve been talking about it and it’s finally here! Check out all of the new insights and dashboards Dasheroo has to offer.

New to Google Sheets Dashboard

Now you can track multiple KPIs on ONE chart in your dashboard, up to 5 in fact. So if you want to see how one metric is performing right alongside others, this is the way to do it.

Google Sheets multi KPI dashboard

QuickBooks Online (QBO)

We familiarized ourselves with yet another integration that we think is strategically important, QuickBooks Online! After all it is one of the leading small business accounting software packages out there. We already show you what’s happening with Sales and Marketing on your dashboards from a myriad of integrations, but tracking money out and revenue in for marketing and sales is also important. So to start we’re giving you three insights from QuickBooks to add to your Dasheroo dashboard.

  • Profit and Loss – View a trending line of income and expenses for your business in the given time period.QBO Income and Expenses Dasheroo dashboard
  • Customer Balance – View the amount owed by your customers broken down by due and past due.QBO Past Due Dasheroo dashboard
  • Income and Expenses – View your high level profit and loss details for the given time period.QBO Income & Expenses dashboard

What’s New?

Ever wanted to know what we’ve been working on right from within the Dasheroo application? I know, sometimes you’re too busy to get yourself to the blog…well we’ll get you there! Just click on “What’s New” in the app and you’ll see exactly what we’ve been up to.

Dasheroo - What's New Feature

More to come!