This is why I love this forum! Thanks guys for your meaty discussion.
So lets create context. Im a .NET developer, more specifically a SharePoint Developer and as you may know Microsoft are pushing Office 365 massively of which SharePoint is now a part of.
Nintex (www.nintex.com) is the competitor and they have been providing a workflow bolt on for SharePoint since 2007 (since SharePoint has workflow built in - workflows = business automation - think travel request or expense approvals or employee onboarding). Without much opposition they did $58 million in revenue in 2012 at a profit of $15 million odd. I don’t dispute that they have an army of account executives who service enterprise clients. They provide an easy to use drag and drop workflow editor which makes creating document approvals pretty easy.
The market is there (trust me on this - and is growing rapidly!!)
Microsoft is ‘making’ every SMB to large enterprise move to Office365. It makes sense too. Email, user management, Drive (like dropbox for business), SharePoint all rolled into one package for a couple of dollars per user per month. They also get SharePoint, which some of you may know is a document management tool.
Ive worked with SP for over 10 years, trust me the market is MASSIVE. And will become more massive as those SMB clients who previously didnt have SharePoint (because it was/still is an on premise software at an additional cost) now suddenly have this cool document management system.
Im targeting SMB’s who now have the ability streamline processes with workflow but don’t have 15K a year for an easy to use tool
The reason im starting this company. Ive now walked into the 3rd or 4th company and recommended their tool, to which the client has turned around said that theyre not prepared to pay that.
My go-to-market strategy is not a simple one. Whilst I do agree that google adwords may not save me, I have done my keywords research (thanks long-tail pro) - over 4000/month google “sharepoint workflow tool”. Im sure that that will create some leads for me. Its a self service tool… designed for you to automate your own workflow instead of getting a developer in to code/configure you one in SharePoint’s clunky interface. Thats the same as Nintex’s value proposition.
I will also partner with SharePoint partners/consultants/developers who do recommend Nintex to their clients. So yes, that takes manpower, i understand that. I will be presenting my product at local meetup groups for office 365 and conferences. I will provide a revenue stream for partners who recommend my product.
Sure I know thats a hard way to go but if everybody decided it was too much effort, would their be any B2B software out there? Besides the decision makers at the SMB’s are different to Enterprise. They can act faster without the red tape.