Welcome to the Tenth episode of Founder's session, where I have a chat with the founders of SaaS companies on their journey building the product & company.
This session's guest is quite different from the previous ones. Rather than a Founder, he is the Head of Growth of a highly successful and growing workflow automation SaaS company taking on the likes of Zapier, Workato, etc.
Let's meet Arpit Choudhury, Head of Growth, Integromat.
Hello Arpit, Welcome to Founder's Session.
Thanks for having me, Yusuff.
Can you explain briefly what is Integromat and what is the problem it solves as a SaaS product for a business?
Integromat is an integration platform that enables one to connect apps and automate workflows using a beautiful, visual builder. It enables one to connect to any API and create complex integrations with ease and without code.
Businesses of all sizes use Integromat to do one or more of the following:
- Streamline workflows by making SaaS tools work together
- Maintain data integrity by syncing data between apps
- Run backend operations for a product/service
As a result of adopting a workflow automation solution like Integromat, businesses are able to increase efficiency while reducing human dependency and cost.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your background when it comes to tech and SaaS?
Sure! I have been working in tech for the most part of my career, besides a stint at Nestle where I used to make videos.
Currently, I head Growth at Integromat which is heavily driven by customer education. Prior to that, I was running 3 coworking spaces and building a coworking-focused SaaS tool which never quite took off.
Alongside my startup endeavors (there have been a few), I have worked as a consultant with businesses of all sizes -- from scrappy startups to Fortune 500 companies -- and have mainly helped solve business problems using software and tech-enabled solutions.
When did you join Integromat and what was the main impetus that made you join the team?
So I have been working with Integromat for a little over 2 years. I started as a Growth Specialist and was mainly creating educational content and running webinars.
So interestingly, prior to joining, I was an Integromat user who was in awe of the product’s capabilities and strongly believed in its potential.
That said, as a user, I was also familiar with what Integromat was lacking and therefore decided to reach out to see if there was a fit. And here I am now, building our Growth team and getting ready for the next phase of our growth story.
What are the primary channels Integromat is promoted traditionally and how it has evolved since you joined the team as the head of growth?
When I had joined a little more than 2 years ago, Integromat was not doing any marketing and was solely growing through word of mouth. Once I came on board, I took over all our community efforts and even today, community marketing remains our number 1 channel.
We also do a decent amount of content marketing and run co-marketing initiatives with our technology partners (apps that have an integration on Integromat).
What is the team’s vision for Integromat and what are the expansion plans in the next 2 to 3 years? Are there any new growth channels you are planning on?
The vision is to become the most-loved automation tool, which I personally think we already are! 😀
We plan to continue growing organically for the time being and double down on improving our customer experience by personalizing every interaction that takes place throughout the customer journey.
The market is so wide for an automation tool like Integromat. While Zapier dominates the space when it comes to SMB’s, the likes of Elastic.io clearly concentrate on mid-market & Enterprise.
Where does Integromat fit into this space? Who would you define as an ideal customer profile?
Well, presently Integromat caters to a wide array of users starting from freelancers and solopreneurs to Fortune 500 companies and large enterprises.
Needless to say, we have different offerings for our larger accounts, and going forward, we want to expand our offerings for our self-serve users as well as our enterprise customers.
The number and the scale of integrations would define the success of a product like Integromat and I believe that’s the biggest strength of Zapier in this space.
How is the process of adding new integrations to the library at Integromat? Is it just based on the number of votes from users and the scale of difficultly or are there any other factors involved?
Well, to be honest, Integromat integrates with a lower number of apps but our integrations are much deeper. While Zapier usually covers a few important endpoints, we try and cover the entire range, enabling our users to create more complex integrations.
New integrations are added based on requests and a few other factors such as the subscription plan of those requesting the integration and the level of complexity.
That said, a lot of the new integrations are built and maintained by vendors themselves. We also regularly transfer the ownership of integrations we have built to third-party vendors that wish to expand or modify their integrations on Integromat.
The PieSync acquisition by HubSpot late last year was really interesting. How do you see the data sync & workflow automation market evolve? Do you see more market consolidation taking place?
This space is getting really hot and the market is poised to grow significantly. I believe many new players will come and go before consolidation takes place.
Also, the rate at which the market is growing, there is definitely space for at least half a dozen vendors to thrive.
Is Integromat Bootstrapped or have you raised capital? Any plans in the pipeline to raise funds?
100% bootstrapped and profitable. No plans for bringing external capital.
What is the major shift in the SaaS industry in your perspective in the past 5 years when it comes to marketing & growth and how you see it evolve over the next decade?
The biggest shift has taken place in the way software is bought and sold. We are now in the end-user era where SaaS companies are embracing strategies that have long been applied only by companies in the consumer space.
Your favorite SaaS tool apart from Integromat and why?
Currently loving Thinkific which I’m using to run a side project called Data-led Academy.
Your favorite European SaaS company whose marketing strategies you would be happy to implement at Integromat for growth?
How is the overall startup scene in Prague? I haven’t heard a lot of Chech based SaaS companies except for a few like Integromat and Roivenue.
What are some of the pros and cons of being based in Prague rather than a more traditional startup city like London or Paris?
It’s pretty great actually and there are a lot of well-known companies operating in Prague. That said, ours is a partially remote team spread across 21 countries so we don’t really consider ourselves as Prague-based.
What is the Sales & Marketing team size currently both on-site and remote, and how is it structured? Are there any plans to expand the team in the near future?
We don’t have a sales team yet and we are just building our Marketing team. Between Marketing, Growth, and Partnerships, we are close to 15.
Some words of advice for any aspiring entrepreneurs especially in the SaaS? In your experience, what are a few things to do and a few mistakes to avoid at all costs?
I like to say this -- while Customer is King, Customer Data is queen. It has never been more important to make data-informed decisions and personalize the customer experience based on their in-app activity.
So to put it briefly, build a great product, and then keep building superior product experiences!
That's some seriously impressive advice, Arpit. Thank you so much for taking the time to join us for an insightful chat. Much appreciated.
Glad to have joined, Yusuff.