Delhi-based machine intelligence-based personalisation platform, Wigzo, has secured an undisclosed amount of funding in a round led by existing investor, 3one4Capital. The round also saw participation from Aarin Capital Partners, Singapore Angel Network, Advantedge Partners, Rohit Malik of DMA Cap, Arjun Sharma of Select Hospitality, Mohit Gulati of Altius Ventures and Vic Kaul (ex-Executive – VMware).
Founded by Umair Mohammed, Himanshu Kaushik, Shamail Tayyab and Mohammed Atyab in 2013, the platform aims to facilitate the integration of online customer data in a seamless fashion and utilise it to send intelligent communication across the web and mobile for its clients.
Adding New Weapons To The Marketers’ Arsenal
Over a trillion marketing messages are sent on a daily basis across the globe – most of which either go into spam or are never even read by users. Users today are overburdened with information, a lot of which is not relevant to them. Adding to this, user experience is adversely affected by a product that does not show relevant information to its users. Such non-personalised, traditional marketing has led to significantly lower clickthroughs and poor conversion rates for brands.
Thus, online platforms (ecommerce, media, etc.) have now consciously started working towards harnessing the power of the data they generate to drive growth. The promise of marketing automation software is big: more leads, more conversions, more sales and lesser manual & repetitive work.
Intelligent personalisation has evolved into one of the hottest space in the field of digital marketing technology, with the industry growing at 24% CAGR, according to a research done by Gartner in 2015. The report further states that more than one-third of all marketers believe that personalisation is the way forward for marketing across all platforms. It has emerged as one of the key focus areas for marketers in industries – but only 10% of digital marketing teams are satisfied by their current efficiencies.
This is where Wigzo comes in. The startup has developed a plug and play solution that helps marketers effectively personalise all customer touch points for their brand across email, web and mobile. It provides a comprehensive set of tools built for marketers, making launching a machine-intelligence driven personalised campaign a matter of a few clicks. The startup helps its clients reach out to their audiences in real time, with the right message, the right content, on the right device and at the right time.
In layman’s terms, Wigzo empowers brands to send marketing content that people would engage with through its array of products. “We believe that users should only see things that they are interested in and we use 1:1 communication driven by behavioral data and machine intelligence to make it happen,” says Umair.
The startup enables this 1:1 communication via its several offerings such as browser desktop notifications, dynamic email, product recommendations, dynamic onsite notifications, all from a single integrated dashboard.
Wigzo leverages big data to bring relevance to the customer data and by using AI it empowers the brands with predictive insights and intelligence to communicate the right message to its customers. It does all this by generating content based on customers’ browsing data, app behaviour, purchase behaviour and search behaviour.
Giving A Push To Your Campaigns
As per Umair, push notifications have now become a key channel for marketers to drive growth and for converting users. Once a user agrees (opts-in) to receive push notifications, there is a bucket of information that is being collected every time he/she visits a client’s website. At the same time, the back-end starts analysing the behavioural patterns of the users and runs a targeted, personalised campaign accordingly.
The best thing about push notifications is that the subscriber does not need to be on the business’ website for him/her to see the notification. The only thing that the notification needs in order to be seen is for the subscriber to be online. Even if they are not, they’ll see it when they come online.
While push notifications may be a marketer’s sparkling new dream channel, there’s only a thin line stopping it from turning into irritating spam. Hence, the marketer’s challenge is – despite being in a digital landscape that is exceedingly intrusive and mass mailer-like, push notifications need to be smarter, relevant, and as unobtrusive as possible.
For push notifications, the key metric here is the number of subscribers. So, if businesses can utilise push well, they can easily amass a large number of subscribers, thus adding huge value in terms of visitor and customer engagement. Also, it’s like the elephant and the nine blind men story, where everyone looks at marketing automation from different perspectives, so the constant challenge for ventures in the space is to stay relevant and differentiated. Through Wigzo, users are assured to receive highly relevant and contextual communications from brands. This quantum of personalisation decides the effectiveness of the campaign.
Umair adds, “In a typical marketing campaign, the conversion rates are around less than 1%. However, on the other hand, in a personalised push campaign, it ranges from somewhere around 8 to 12%.”
Wigzo’s customers have witnessed an average 7x ROI, 23% increase in clickthroughs, and 14% increase in conversions. In 2016, over 1 Bn personalised messages and 100 Mn recommendations were sent using Wigzo’s platform.
The startup currently offers three pricing models – it’s free for brands under 1,000 users, and after 1,000 converted users, the company follows a flexible pay-as-you-go model. For businesses, the plans vary as – $69 for 5K users, $129 for 15K users, $349 for 30K users, $499 for 50K users. It offers customised pricing for companies having more than 50K users.
Umair claims the company is already profitable and growing at 15% Month-on-Month, and is targeting to reach $1 Mn MRR in the next 18 months. GoldenScent and Awok from Dubai, CouponRaja, Mr. Button, W for Women, Kaaryah from India are some of its clients.
On Future Plans, Competition And More
Perhaps, this solid business model plus product-market fit explains the global presence the startup has achieved, with partnerships already in place across Japan, Indonesia and Australia. The founders also plan to utilise the fresh round of funding to expand into North and South America. He adds, “We felt that while we might still need some more time to reach deeper into the Indian customer ecosystem, going global was very important. And to go global, we needed additional talent and have investors with the right connects.”
Commenting on the investment, Pranav Pai, 3one4 Capital, said “Wigzo has delivered an orbital shift in retargeting efficiency to a very healthy spectrum of clients – from early-stage product companies, financial institutions, new media platforms and niche online retailers. The machine learning-driven platform has proven ROI amplification and is demonstrating clear evidence of data network effects at scale. With a continued focus on value addition and partnerships, the team is aiming to change the game of online marketing. We are very excited to see the rapid evolution of this value proposition, and we are looking forward to working with the team more closely as they scale beyond India.”
Wigzo had earlier raised a seed round worth $100K led by Nikunj Jain, Outbox Ventures, and Ritesh Malik. In December 2015, it secured $500K (INR 3 Cr) in Pre-Series A round led by Aarin Capital Partners, Chairman of Manipal Global Education, TV Mohandas Pai and others. Recently, Wigzo was also chosen among the five startups that were part of Great Tech Rocketship, a UKTi initiative.
Apart from Wigzo, Indian companies like Wingify, Betaout, Notify Visitors, Pushengage, MoEngage, Webengage, LetReach, and Vizury among others, are successfully using push notifications to help their clients and brands keep their customers engaged. Last year, US-based Boomtrain entered the Indian market after it acquired messaging company Nudgespot. Another US-based company Marketfox was recently selected in Y Combinator’s W17 batch.
While the market for personalisation and push notifications is just starting to pick up across the works, to what extent will Wigzo be able to capture this niche in this already overcrowded market remains to be seen.
Wigzo is part of Inc42’s 42Fellowship – a year-long fellowship programme for India’s top growing and upcoming startups with the aim to build a close-knit community who can help each other multiply their impact.