Saxon tells us why companies with great cultures are more successful; how WeVue transitioned from a consumer-level business to an enterprise-level business; and how Saxon is growing WeVue with growth hacking, content marketing and automation.
Today’s guest, Saxon Baum, is Co-CEO and head of sales at WeVue, a Tampa, Florida based software company that helps bring organizational culture to life through the power of mobile photo and video sharing.
WeVue launched as a consumer product more than four years ago, while Saxon was going to school at the Miami University of Ohio. The idea was sharing cool, fun cultural events in a semi-private setting, before Instagram hashtags or Snapchat stories were a big thing. However, they had the same problem that most consumer applications have: they weren’t making money.
WeVue was, however, being used by companies to record images and videos of their corporate events. Saxon and his partner transitioned the application into the B2B space, using concepts that are typically very popular in the consumer space to grow a revenue-generating business.
We’re going to learn how WeVue transitioned from a consumer-level product to an enterprise-level product, how company culture can have a significant impact on revenue, and how Saxon plans to grow WeVue with a SaaS model.
“Culture is the way people interact when the boss’ back is turned.” (click to tweet)
- 2:35 – WeVue is a completely configured company culture app. We provide an employee engagement app for companies to be able to engage their employees around any sort of cultural communication.” It is photo and video based
- 2:55 – WeVue works with companies who might be struggling with recruiting or retention because of a culture issue, and
- 3:00 – WeVue focuses on employee engagement and connecting offices and remote workers. “What we’ve seen is really a lack of bringing culture into the cloud. Everything else is in the cloud now.”
- 4:35 – The original consumer application version of WeVue wasn’t making money. “We saw, completely unintentionally, that companies has been using our apps for their events … they would use our app to gather photos and videos from their employees.” This happened 10 or 15 times before Saxon and his partner transitioned to a B2B service.
- 8:40 – “Culture is the way people interact when the boss’ back is turned.” It all plays into the way that people really live their life every day within work.
- 9:40 – The most successful companies really do have great cultures, and people want to work there.
- 11:00 – “There’s such a good opportunity to get people involved early on when looking at culture. If you do put these things in place, it’s just going to benefit you 10 fold come the time your company is really moving and you’re really starting to generate revenue and really start to Go and Grow.”
- 11:40 – To create a properly designed culture, you have to look at the building blocks. The biggest building blocks are:
- 12:10 – For example, one of WeVue’s values is, “Don’t sit in traffic.” They don’t want employees wasting their time in traffic, so they don’t expect your work day to start at 9 and end at 5.
- 12:35 – Another example from WeVue is, “Drink good coffee. Yes, we love coffee, but the bigger thing is drink good coffee. Be a part of a craft. Do things in your work that are a craft, don’t just go through the motions.”
- 14:45 – How does WeVue fit into the process of culture building?
- “We create a visual culture.” How do they get people showing the culture through picture and video?
- Companies that are very culturally active, with a successful culture, don’t necessarily have streamlined culture, and WeVue believes that is diluting their culture.
- They have a heavy professional services component on the front end. They consult with individuals in the company to come up with a culture and an engagement plan, then use the app as the backbone to foster these initiatives.
- 17:30 – Saxon gives the example of one of their most culturally active clients, iPipeline. WeVue helped bridge the gap between different offices digitally through cultural engagement.
- 23:30 – After WeVue knew who they wanted to target in the enterprise space, Saxon got in contact with previous guest of the show, Nick Kullin. “He’s the one that really helped me understand digital process, understand growth hacking. I would say that working with Nick, and building out our marketing strategy around growth hacking, was how we really started to hit home with a lot of different companies.“
- 24:30 – WeVue came up with the verticals they wanted to hit:
- Companies recruiting young talent
- Companies with high turnover
- Companies with several offices
- 24:45 – WeVue segmented these lists by using LinkedIn and Glass Door, “two websites that a lot of people know how to use, but they’re not using to the full advantage. There is so much data on these companies.”
- 25:25 – “The one biggest piece of advice I would say, in terms of growth, is automation.” Because automation, in the sense of building lists, answering emails and doing other minute tasks. “We were spending so much time on lead generation that we didn’t even have time to take the sales calls.”
- 30:20 – “Content marketing has been huge for us, and not in the sense of traditional content marketing.”
- 32:15 – WeVue is hitting a ceiling with one-on-one sales. Most of their sales are coming in from channel partners and platform sales. WeVue just beginning to integrate their application into platforms such as SalesForce or ADP.
- 33:40 – One of the biggest things WeVue struggled with on the consumer side was trying to build their own audience. When they started looking at the enterprise side, they also realized that there is a much bigger opportunity (and probably less work) if they took advantage of pre-existing audiences.
- 34:40 – Saxon has been selling the current, enterprise level WeVue product for about six months. They are about to close $100,000 in revenue, and they have a lot of plans to scale up and transition into a SaaS model.
- 36:50 – Quickfire Q&A
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Resources mentioned in this episode:
- Glass Door
- What They Don’t Teach You at Harvard Business School by Mark McCormack (affiliate link)
Answers to Quickfire Q&A:
- If you could chat with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
- Jerry Garcia, “Because of the willingness to be so unique.”
- Name a tool, app, or website that you can’t live without and why.
- Waze, “I am absolutely terrible directions and I need Waze to get anywhere, even if it’s walking down the street to get to the convenience store.”
- Tell us something unique and interesting about you that not many may know.
- “I am a diehard Pittsburgh fan. I’ve been to one Super Bowl and I’ve been to probably 15 Stanley Cup hockey games.”
- What is your favorite business book and why?
- What is the top characteristic or trait that you look for in people you work with?
- Teamwork and Personality. “Culture fit is the most important thing for us.”
- What is something you believe, but few others agree with you?
- “I have the kind of Steve Jobs psyche that anything can be done. I’m not the technical part of the team, so that’s really my psyche … the other piece is I’m a firm believer of taking responsibility for your actions.”
How to contact Saxon:
If you are interested in having any sort of cultural conversation, or just want to get in touch, with Saxon, you can send him an email at Saxon@WeVue.com. You can learn more about the company at www.WeVue.com.
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