Ed: I implemented my first CRM about 15 years ago, at the time ACT was a very popular single contact manager (that’s what we called it before CRM was a thing).
As the business grew we needed to network the CRM so moved to a Goldmine network license.
There is probably a good case study about what happened to Goldmine, how they didn’t become Salesforce, Goldmine owned the CRM market 15 years ago, looking at their website my guess is that they have stayed with the old school office server based software licensing model and are being swamped by rabid cloud based competitors, but at least they are still in business 15 years later which is an unusual feat.
We outgrew Goldmine after a few years and we implemented the open source VTiger which we modified to integrated with our support and billing system.
Since then I have worked with numerous CRM systems, Batchbook, Salesforce, Streak, Highrise and looked at a dozen others and frankly I don’t love any of them. Highrise was my favourite but I think it is too expensive.
The reason I tell you all this is to illustrate that the CRM market has been around for a long time and is pretty crowded.
Typically as markets mature, the Gorilla owns all the profits and everyone else is left to fight over the scraps, the profit disappears, competed away.
Most CRM’s have terrible interfaces and workflows, they mostly look like someone has taken an old greenscreen terminal app and put a stylesheet on it, the market Gorilla Salesforce is a case in point very user unfriendly.
Few CRMs capture customer email communications well, it’s usually up to the sales person or customer service person to enter relevant email details/actions which many never do, so there is a large portion of your customer communication which is never captured, something which sends shivers down the spines of business owners.
So despite entering a crowded market late STACK CRM gets a thumbs up on two key points, it is a nice looking app with a new workflow which is very Agile/Lean in its approach and makes a lot of sense to see and manage your prospects visually vs the traditional method of funnel management where you change the stage on the record and then somehow find a report buried to get a funnel report. Makes a lot of sense to me.The other thing that Stack promises but I was unable to test is that they intercept all your inbound and outbound customer email and record this for each customer.
|What problem are you solving?
|STACK was invented to solve a problem for our existing business; Wedding Club.
You see, we already have over a thousand customers who purchase wedding leads from us. I would say 30% of them are naturally good sales people and therefore love our product. There is a segment of about 10% that use marketing automation and a CRM, then there are about 30% that have intermittent success and convert one in every 20 leads we send them. The rest churn, and do not like us.
|What is your solution?
|STACK touts a 30 minute set-up time and an ability to initiate automations and triggers to coax leads and existing customers into making more sales. Using a KANBAN canvas popularised by Trello, STACK moulds systematic thinking and an easy to use UX.
STACK focuses on small and medium businesses who prefer to focus on execution rather than sales.
|small businesses, start-ups, people tired of salesforce
|How will you make money?
|Tell us about the market & founders, why is this a great opportunity?
|Boris Gefter is the founder of STACK as well as the General Manager of IDM (Independent Digital Media) which owns and operates a number of digital publishing and advertising assets. Boris is extremely experiences with product design, user acquisition and analytics. Having worked for and consulted some of Australia’s largest websites, there is little he has not seen. Boris lives and breathes ‘start-up’ and has completely embraced ‘lean’ with everything that he does.Alex Gorney is the CTO of STACK as well as the lead developer of IDM. Alex is an extremely passionate and talented full stack developer with a deeply seated love of WordPress and all things open source. With a trained eye for good web design and web development practices, Alex is pivotal to the success of STACK.
|What type of funding has the company received?