Freshworks founded in 2010 specializes in providing businesses with cloud-based software solutions. Sales CRM software, recruitment tools, and customer-support helpdesk software are all part of the company’s product range. The company has quickly grown to over 1,000 employees worldwide, spread across five offices, and its software is already in use by over 130,000 organizations.
So, how did Freshworks, an Indian start-up, compete successfully against large, established competitors?
Freshworks was not only releasing goods in a field dominated by major incumbents, but it also had a lofty goal of serving businesses of all sizes, including the notoriously difficult-to-enter SMB market. Freshworks has leveraged Google Search advertising to grow its customer base in mature regions across the US and Europe since its launch. Freshworks could put more money into its digital marketing budget and improve the client onboarding experience thanks to a unique global inside-sales approach that reduced the company’s cost of selling. As a result, the firm was able to compete directly with its major rivals.
Freshworks and Google collaborated to filter leads through Analytics and Google Ads in order to optimize campaigns and increase ROI from search, assuring quality growth. Although Search is the company’s principal marketing channel, it has effectively extended into other Google products with the support of Google. In 2016, YouTube played an important role in its branding strategy, and it has been experimenting with Google Marketing Platform and YouTube to supplement its Google Ads campaigns since then.
Freshworks is now a global leader in cloud-based business software, with North America accounting for the majority of revenue, followed by Europe. The company now has over 130,000 customers, with Google goods accounting for 60% of its revenue. Google’s analytics and insights have been critical in understanding and continuing the company’s growth, as well as budget management. “Google tools are the most advanced for analyzing a channel’s effectiveness,” says Ramesh Ravishankar, Freshworks’ Marketing Director. “When it comes to discussing the return on investment of Google goods, we’re well-prepared.“
The company will use a variety of Google tools to increase brand awareness worldwide and acquire new customers. With the company’s expanding portfolio of Freshworks products, it plans to further expand into new global markets by using Google Translation Services. Earlier this month, Freshworks raised over $1 billion via an IPO on Nasdaq. CapitalG owns around 8.2 percent of the company’s post-IPO market value, or $1 billion.
The Google Factor
While financial assistance is important, CapitalG has much more to offer. The firm’s in-house team provides extensive hands-on growth help, as well as access to Google and Alphabet specialists, including CEO Sundar Pichai. CapitalG assists entrepreneurs in simplifying all elements of their business, from sales and marketing to AI and security.
CapitalG helped Freshworks with its “go-to-market,” Frantz explains, by assisting with digital client acquisition, an area where Google had enormous insights and understanding.
Over the years, approximately 1,200 portfolio company employees have been trained on machine learning, engineering leadership, and other topics by more than 2,500 Googlers. A number of Freshworks engineers were also enrolled in similar programs.
Freshworks and Nasdaq
Freshworks has been with the investment firm since its inception in Chennai and its relocation to San Mateo, California, in 2019. As a result, it is aware of the company’s vision and trajectory. Freshworks, for example, is still a loss-making company on paper. However, these setbacks aren’t caused for alarm. For one thing, the net loss fell to $9.8 million from $57 million a year ago, indicating that the company is cutting costs. Second, loss-making is typically intentional with startups. “It just needs to be evident that you could be profitable if you wanted to,” Frantz said. “However, many companies, like Freshworks, spend for growth.” “Investors want to know that [loss-making] is a choice, not a result of a systematic problem in the business that prevents them from being successful.“
Freshworks had a hugely successful public premiere in the United States. It did, however, have all of the necessary ingredients: With a presence in over 120 countries, it is a global company. A significant portion of its executive staff is comprised of seasoned Silicon Valley veterans. Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital are among the firm’s backers. And the company’s revenue and growth figures have always been strong.
According to Frantz, achieving the quarter-to-quarter predictability and long-term growth story required to go public is “a really difficult thing to achieve.” Furthermore, “it is necessary to have procedures and processes in place to operate a corporation, for which the US has a high standard.”
However, this does not rule out the possibility of additional Indian businesses succeeding. Freshworks, in fact, is seen by Frantz as a “torchbearer” for Indian SaaS startups, and he believes the trend will continue. Druva, another SaaS company, is planning an IPO in the United States.
According to Frantz, these corporations may be looking west because the US market is “more developed than the Indian market.” “There’s more liquidity, and the message that sends to customers is a little stronger.”
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Source: Digital Ready