Today, we launched a Freshworks brand campaign in the San Francisco Bay Area with billboards, train wraps and radio campaigns developed by our creative partners at Funworks.
When I launched WebEx in 1999, the industry had a vision for cloud software, but the promise has gone badly awry. As one of our customers put it, “SaaS wound up being the ‘same wine, new bottle.’” The implication was that it was the same old ugly enterprise software in a new delivery model. SaaS software that was supposed to put Siebel, Oracle, and Microsoft to shame wound up looking and feeling just like those dated and bloated enterprise apps. Lots of nods were made along the way to the “consumerization” of business software and ease-of-use. But that never happened, as SaaS leaders catered exclusively to huge enterprises with complex requirements and workflows, leaving SMBs and smaller enterprises with few options.
After 20 years of the SaaS “revolution,” end-users are not happy. According to softwareadvice.com, 58 percent of SaaS CRM users have a hard time adopting the software and 56 percent have difficulties learning to use it. As for the IT side, 57 percent of customers complain of significant issues customizing and integrating their systems, which leads to long implementation cycles, delayed time-to-value and cost overruns.
That’s where Freshworks comes into the picture. Our fresh approach to cloud software truly delivers on easy-to-use business solutions that work right out of the box. Compared to Freshworks’ customer engagement platform, the leading CRM and IT service offerings are clunky and unfriendly. And since all of our products work together beautifully from the start, you don’t have to wait forever or spend an arm and a leg to start wowing your customers.
Our “Hit Refresh” campaign dramatizes – often with exaggerated humor and playfulness – the plight of SaaS end-users as they rise up against their bosses and the SaaS industry to demand better cloud software.
You’ll see a lot of this campaign over the coming months as we drive home a message of end-user empowerment to the entire cloud software user community. It’s not enough just to cater to the needs of upper management. We must start with a fresh, employee-first design philosophy that focuses on the key relationship between front-line adoption, employee-adoption and successful customer engagement.