The story of 13chats kicked off at the biggest IT conference, Web Summit, held in Portugal in November of 2019. Back then, we only had a basic idea of the project and the determination to succeed.
The purpose of our trip was to get customer feedback about our service from different countries, to help customers get acquainted with the functionality of the chatbot service, to find new partners and customers, and, most importantly, to present our new product — 13chats.
We would like to share how we prepared for the trip step-by-step as well as our results from the trip.
Applying to the Conference
We sent an application to the organizers in order to participate in the Web Summit conference approximately six months before the due date. Then, three months before the event, we had a Skype call with them and talked about our brand positioning as well as our new products.
For the presentation of our Facebook chatbot features, two stands were booked for us. One stand was in the Beta sector, which was for products that were actively being developed, and the one for our new service was in the Alpha sector, where companies only presented projects that had just been launched.
The most important event of this trip was the presentation of our new project — 13chats. It is a SaaS solution for marketers and sales representatives that combines dynamic widgets for websites, chatbots, and in-app chats.
We presented this project at our stand in the Alpha sector on the third day of the conference.
We also prepared eco-merch for the new project in advance (the message was the same but the corporate colors and logo were different), created accounts on 13chats to show how it works right at our stand, and made a Facebook chatbot.
We subscribed any attendee who wanted to be the first to test the 13chats Facebook chatbot… New subscribers received a greeting message with a photo of the team so that they could remember us and our conversation.
The chatbot introduced the subscribers to the 13chats options and to our team.
It was also possible to download a presentation about the product and leave a request for a closed demo using the chatbot.
Results of the Web Summit Trip
We returned from the conference feeling recharged. The whole team really enjoyed the trip, regardless of whether it was their first trip or their third.
During the conference, we subscribed about 100 people to the bot, which provided information about the features of SendPulse’s Facebook chatbots, and subscribed about 70 people to the 13chats chatbot. We scanned about 300 contacts and saved the data in the app. Now we are currently in talks with potential partners and consulting new clients that we met at the conference.
When we came back home from Portugal after the Web Summit conference in 2019, we decided that we needed to start the project immediately. We realized we had to bring our ideas to action and show them to the whole wide world. This started the search for a smart team to handle the ambitious and technically challenging projects that became 13chats.
In just six months we went from an idea to our first client. We have run a hundred demo calls and received so much feedback that we have enough tasks for the next six months.
3 Key Rules for Start-Ups from 13chats
Every emerging start-up strives to become huge, but it’s not a surprise that a fair amount of them fail. At 13chats, being a start-up ourselves, we know that believing in yourself and hard work can produce miracles when starting small. We’ve outlined three key tips that can easily fit into any start-up philosophy. We know that they work from experience and we hope that they will help others on their path to a successful start-up.
Use simple available solutions. It’s possible to find free tools and using them is perfect at the first stage. Use a website building platform instead of a customized CMS. No personal domain, no problem. A website building platform gives you the opportunity to start right away and not waste your precious time.
Make new technologies work for you. Use social media and chatbots to connect and communicate with your audience. This way you can save money on advertising your brand and make this expenditure smaller than you expected.
Look for grant projects and contact potential investors. It’s worth remembering that once a company has invested in you, it expects a return on its money as soon as possible. Be prepared to take risks, allow yourself to bring crazy ideas to life, change your approach, and start again if necessary. Don’t waste time waiting for the perfect solution. Time is your ally if you breathe your dream like air.
Attend conferences, hackathons, summits, and meetups to spread the word about your start-up. For us, the starting point for our product was the Web Summit in 2019 where we demonstrated our chatbot to visitors. They tested our product and we got valuable feedback that gave us vectors for improvement.
At the conference, we met people looking for solutions we didn’t have at that time. However, these conversations inspired us with new marketing ideas. To attract more users to your product, use every chance you have to pitch your product: organize webinars, be a speaker at a conference, and run demos of your project. Collect feedback and use it to improve existing and new features.
Despite the fact that we are quite limited in travel options due to the pandemic, let’s try to find something positive. 2020 was a year of online events. Now, you can present a new product right from your couch and get your first client from any country around the world. Anything is possible!
Be open, fearless, and…
…persistent. Don’t back out of your goals. Believe in your idea and stick to your principles. Our team and investors will feel your sparkle and enthusiasm. Is your staff a team of jacks-of-all-trades? Don’t have a downtown office? Okay, but you are a start-up, aren’t you? Be patient and just keep working, improve your results and perfect your product. Don’t forget to sleep in between. 🙂
We at 13chats understand the value of each customer and we have a special offer for start-ups. We will set up a Facebook chatbot and a website live chat for your start-up for free. Make your dreams come true! We believe in you!