Insided is the coolest Dutch Tech company of 2016. And with the recent opening of its US NY HQ the journey continues. What is it that makes this company the coolest among many other contestants?
First of all, of course, the product: A Cloud based social business platform. In a world where the customer journey is largely influenced by peer-to-peer engagement and digital is everything, community building is critical for success. Insided offers a community engagement platform tailored to today’s business requirements. The company has a range of high profile customers such as TomTom, Sonos, Ziggo, ABN AMRO and Achmea who showcase the benefits of the platform.
Second, the people: Wouter Neyndorff & Robin van Lieshout are the co-founders of Insided. The combination of the two seems to attract the right mix of employees as well as clients and investors. The recent capital investment of €6M will help the company to expand internationally and scale up quickly as witnessed by its recent global expansion initiatives.
But most important, the partners. There are a number of challenges selling SaaS community platforms. First of all who buys it? Is it the IT manager, or business manager? Which partners have access to this manager? Is it a technical sale or business sell? Partners are crucial in the go to market strategy and Insided seems to have found the appropriate mix of both IT and non IT partners.
The IT partners include companies such as Salesforce, Facebook, Google, Oracle, RightNow and Adobe. But maybe more interesting are the non IT partners such as:
- Branddocters: Brands strategy & product positioning (Dutch)
- Conversocial: A NY based customer engagement firm
- Janrain: a Customer identity and access management platform
- SocialInc,: a social media strategy & marketing firm(Dutch)
Though it is still early days to see how the company will evolve, and the companies’ partnering initiatives are still in its infancy, the initial steps to build a partner ecosystem look promising. Insided is partnering inside and outside the existing IT ecosystem, focused on those companies that have the customer engagement experience & access to their client base.
Challenges for the company will be to bring their partnering initiatives to the next level, where they should focus on expanding its global partnerships, setting guidelines & criteria that future partners should adhere to.
Another challenge is to build market presence with strategic alliances. In the technology area the big names are mentioned but no concrete examples of a joint go to market can be found. Salesforce would make an excellent strategic alliance for Insided, building the bridge between technology and business for them.
With the right product, people and an expanding ecosystem, our bets are on Insided as potential high flyer for 2017.