BFM Business invited FollowAnalytics Founder Samir Addamine to speak about his company’s mobile marketing solution designed for the enterprise, allowing brands to better connect and engage with their customers through their mobile apps. FollowAnalytics’ mobile CRM is already used by industry leaders like AXA, Allianz, BNP Paribas, L’Oréal, and Renault. See the full interview here with English translation below:
Interviewer: Every night, a startup spends five minutes with us to pitch its idea. His company is based in San Francisco, but Samir Addamine is with us tonight in Paris. Good evening, Samir.
Samir Addamine: Good evening.
Interviewer: You launched FollowAnalytics three years ago, and it has already grown by 2,400%. You are in the field of Mobile Marketing and work purely B2B. Your clients are enterprises, as are your investors, who include technology giants such as SAP, SalesForce, as well as some more traditional venture capitalists and investment funds. In France, you have clients such as BNP’s HelloBank, L’Oréal, Louis Vuitton, Renault, and many others. Can you explain what you provide to these companies?
Samir Addamine: I started the company in early 2013 when large organizations started to take notice of mobile applications. The likes of Uber and Airbnb came in and completely changed the rules of the game. These businesses, primarily mobile based, became key players in the transport industry, hospitality, tourism, etc. The Fortune 2000 companies needed to react. They needed to become mobile and invest in mobile platforms.
Interviewer: So everyone wanted their own app.
Samir Addamine: Exactly.
Interviewer: And now everyone has one. A few years ago, it would have cost between €50,000-€100,000 to develop an app. Now it is only a few hundred. It may not be the best app in the world, but it is something.
Samir Addamine: But soon an application no longer sufficed. What we envisaged in early 2013 was a mobile CRM. That starts with analytics: understanding what people do with mobile applications. We’re spending over four hours every day using apps.
Interviewer: How many times do I open it? How do I use it? Do I close it straight away? Have I used it since I downloaded it? Why and when do I close it?
Samir Addamine: And what do you do with it?
Interviewer: Do I purchase things on Vente-privée or ShowroomPrivé? Or am I just a tourist?
Samir Addamine: Exactly. So we analyze data via machine learning and algorithms to study app usage behavior. Using that, we offer push notifications through a marketing automation tool, thus allowing the brand to interact with you. We then wanted to create a mobile CRM. I noticed that major CRMs already existed for larger companies. So I spoke to them. I started with SalesForce, the world leader, and they subsequently became an investor and partner.
Interviewer: And Marc Benioff became a founder. And he is apparently close to Hillary Clinton and might leave if she is elected.
Samir Addamine: Well you know more than me.
Interviewer: And for those who missed it, SalesForce’s Benioff recently refused €55 billion from Microsoft, believing his company to be worth more. But we are here to talk about you and FollowAnalytics. So what do you do, and what solution do you provide? As we will speak about later tonight with App Annie, mobile apps continue to explode, but for some, the hype around apps might not last. In the future, artificial Intelligence, in which you also partake, may change everything. Robots may be able to order your Uber car direct from your inbox, without you needing to open the app.
Samir Addamine: Absolutely. However, all of that remains a mobile usage/service. So we are invested in it. Mobile is more than simply a channel, it has become a platform. It is a revolution as big as that of the cloud. Banks are nowadays designing their services with mobile in mind. They use geolocalization and take into account the context of the user. So bots are immensely useful in that regard and will simplify matters. That is the most important. Companies such as Apple are so successful because of the user interface and the ease of access they provide. We help these large organisations to better understand their mobile customers. We have just partnered with a large bank in the US, Wells Fargo, which is a bit like BNP Paribas here in Europe.
Interviewer: Which in the last few years has become America’s biggest bank.
Samir Addamine: And these companies need a tool like ours to get to know their millions of customers and better interact and engage with them.
Interviewer: Thank you very much, Samir. You will have to come back as this is a fascinating topic. That was Samir Addamine from FollowAnalytics, a company that helps organizations follow and better understand their customers.