At its core, Zylo is a platform built to unlock the power and capability of subscription based online software. Our first step in doing that is to combine 3 highly important data points to give our customers visibility into what their employees are using (or not using), how much they are spending on subscription based software, to gauge overall employee sentiment of any given application and to give our customers a single place to go to see everything about an app in their stack. This gives our customers a powerful and really insightful new view of their SaaS landscape and the value they are getting from their SaaS partners. I’ve had multiple conversations where people ask me if by giving this level of visibility to organizations, do I think we will upset SaaS providers…my answer is always unequivocally no. Let me tell you why.
Across our team, we have decades of experience working for SaaS companies spanning from writing code to selling software to managing the procurement process within a SaaS company. We are a very customer focused group, always striving for ways to better understand our customer. We would go visit them at their offices around the globe, look over their shoulders as they used our products, dig into their metrics to understand how our products impacted their bottom lines and participate in user studies and user groups. We wanted to be certain that our customers are getting the absolute most value for every dollar spent…this passion for customers and desire to deliver the most value possible is shared with every SaaS executive I’ve ever spoken to.
But there are real challenges in achieving this…How do SaaS execs get to level of detail they need with certainty and at scale? What if they are unable to get at this data and their customers aren’t seeing the full value from their products or services? Or they aren’t utilizing the products to their full extent? What if they’re paying for more licenses than they’re actually using? Or worse, what happens if your company doesn’t know the answers to any of these questions until it’s too late?
There are 3 keys questions every SaaS executive should be asking:
Do I have the right level of visibility into specific customer feedback, application utilization, and spend across my entire business?
I’m going to tackle this in 2 parts. First with feedback and utilization. More often than not, a SaaS executive has access to some version of this data, but it is typically aggregated across your entire business. If you have insight into this information at the individual customer level, it unlocks an entirely new conversation with your customer. And second, as soon as you layer in spend data you have a new lens to view the relationship between you and your customer…one that is focused on the value being delivered, backed by real data. You need the tools in place to determine if their perceived value is inline with their spend, and better yet, how this compares with companies of similar size and with your competitors.
How am I ensuring that my customers know they are getting value from my platform?
Just like a SaaS executive getting the proper visibility into the value being delivered, you want your customer to fully understand the value they are getting from their investment. The relationship between the vendor and the customer should be one built on transparency. Slack has totally nailed this with their fair billing policy, only charging their customers for active users and not requiring an upfront cost for users that may never get provisioned. Now, your pricing or financials might not be able to support such a policy, but you should be leveraging transparency to build a rock solid relationship. At Zylo, the first app tracked that you see when you log into your account is Zylo. Very meta, I know, but it immediately gives our customer the right level of visibility into the value our platform is delivering.
How can I make sure my products and services are getting in front of the broadest set of potential customers as possible?
Having this level of visibility and providing the right level of transparency to your customers begins to unlock the full potential of SaaS. But how do you use this to get an edge on your competition? You need to have the resources and tools in place to be there at the moment a potential customer isn’t happy with their current SaaS vendor and starts to look. Being there, empowered with the data to back why so many of your customers love your products and renew over and over again.