Hey guys! Startup Radius interviewed Vyper – a platform that allows users to launch referral programs, viral contests and giveaways in no time. But the best thing about it – it’s free to try (if participant count doesn’t exceed 250 people)!
Learn how to go viral in less than 10 minutes, how they built Vyper, how their background in paid ads helped, why they focus on eCommerce clients, why paying attention to the complete marketing funnel matters, and much more. Enjoy!
Can you tell us about what you are working on? What is Vyper?
We are building a tool that helps brands run giveaways, referral and reward programs. It’s an area that is crossing organic and paid to create viral growth.
Incentivising and gamifying actions help brands grow the areas of their business that are most important.
We recently released VYPER 2.0 which we worked hard to improve the product. Focusing on the successful features and getting rid of the ones that were less used. This has helped us improve conversion rates, sharability, and revenue tracking.
Why are you building this? Was there a particular source of inspiration or money-making idea?
My background is in paid ads, since 2015 I’ve accumulated over $150 million on Facebook and Google ads.
VYPER was created because we were constantly trying to get better and better value from our ad dollars. We wanted a tool that helped generate shares, engagement, referrals and incentivization of key social actions.
The beta tool that we build ended up working really well for paid and organic growth so we turned it into a SaaS product for all brands to use.
Time for bragging! How big you are – traffic, users, anything else?
We have thousands of people using VYPER rewards and running giveaways. Probably a few hundred giveaways live at a time as people tend to only run giveaways every 2 – 3 months. But the rewards and referral programs are set and forget so those users are much more consistent.
We are starting to see brands run weekly and monthly giveaway campaigns in Q4 though. These campaigns are helping brands build audiences to remarket during November and December.
Who are your main competitors, and how good/bad they are?
There are so many competitors in our space. Everyone loves giveaways and referral programs. There are at least 10 strong competitors in the space.
Who uses Vyper? What is your perfect buyer persona?
Most of our users are eCom brands as they usually have the easiest time creating rewards for their campaigns. Discounts, gift cards, and free products are the easiest.
We also see a lot of people in the music and influencer space. People trying to build a passionate audience do really well with giveaways.
Were there any early ‘growth hacks’ or tactics that have contributed to your current success?
Our first ever big success was running a giveaway that gave away lifetime access to 10-15 software products. This validated our product and showed that giveaways were a great growth hack for starting a business. This joint giveaway also helped us get VYPER in front of a lot of business owners (our target market).
We also had some great collaborations with Foundr and other big entrepreneurial authorities which set us up in the right crowd. Doing guest posts, interviews, Facebook group training, etc were all great ways to collaborate.
What were some of the biggest challenges while building Vyper early on and how did you solve them?
We tried freemium at first but couldn’t handle the workload so we had to change our product pricing to paid accounts only. This slowed down account growth but allowed us to keep the service quality high.
Once we built a better product, had more support resources and nailed the infrastructure of the product, we then opened it back up to the freemium model.
We also thought that paid ads would be a key part of our marketing strategy as that was what my background was in. But B2B ads were very different from B2C, so cracking the code on paid ads tool a lot longer and more money than we had anticipated.
If you could give a marketing advice to other companies, what could it be based on your experience?
Stop looking at direct response only, start planning your marketing strategies to have top and bottom of the funnel. The channels, messaging, creative, cost, and optimization goals are going to be different for the two different types of traffic and users.
Top of the funnel (TOF) = Cold traffic, these people has never seen your brand before. You are trying to get a micro commitment from these people.
Bottom of the funnel (BOF) = Hot traffic, these people know about your brand but have not purchased or committed yet. You are trying to get a final commitment to purchase from these people.
In summary – How can you get the first touch (TOF) for as cheap as possible while still maintaining quality. Then how can you convert that person (BOF) at the highest AOV and increase their LTV as much as possible.
AOV = average order value
LTV = lifetime value
Which marketing channels you prefer and why?
Facebook and Instagram still lead the way as they have great targeting, tracking and ad types. The other channels still have some work to do before they get on the same level.
Is Vyper monetized? Why did you choose the current monetization method?
Yes, the freemium turns into paid once you hit a certain usage limit.
What are the top products/services you use in your company and why do you like them?
- Slack – as the in-house communication tool
- Trello – for task management
- WordPress – as the content management system
- Ahrefs – for SEO analysis needs
- Facebook – we do run Facebook ads
- Adwords offline editor – for Google ads campaigns
- Manychat – for Facebook messenger campaigns
- Drip – for smart email and drip campaigns
- Google Drive – for document management