In this blog of TeamWave’s FOUNDER STORIES, we have published an interview with Randy Rayess, the Cofounder of Outgrow.Co. In this interview, Randy talks about what is Outgrow, how did they come up with this idea, who are their customers and much more!
Plug: TeamWave is an all-in-one, small business productivity platform that is fully integrated with Google Workspace. Manage your sales, contacts, projects & people in one place for just $39 /Month
Interview with Randy Rayess (Co-Founder, Outgrow)
Reshmi: What is Outgrow.Co in the words of the Cofounder?
Randy: Outgrow is a no-code tool that allows users to easily create interactive content such as Contests, Giveaways, Polls, Quizzes, Surveys, Calculators, recommendations, assessments and chatbots, to interact with your existing customers and prospects in an engaging way. The content that you can create can be embedded on your website. Or can be promoted using your blog, email newsletter or social media channels. And you get the capability to track the ROI and analytics as soon as you go live. You are able to easily launch multiple campaigns and assess how they compare using our compare tab. Finally, on your results page, you can have a key call to action. This can be focused on getting the user to share the content, follow you on social, download a PDF, provide their email or phone number, schedule a call or go to a specific page on your site.
Reshmi: How did you come up with this idea?
Randy: In the beginning, we made an app development company. This would allow users to hire a team of developers their idea for an app which they, for instance, wanted to put on the iPhone App Store or the Google Play store. This was around the late 2000s going into early 2010s. And if you’ll remember these were the heydays of the mobile phone revolution (the first iPhone was released in 2008). So there was a big apps craze in the market. Everyone had the next-big-idea for an app. But in general no one knew how much it actually cost to get it built.
So we created a calculator and put it on our website. This would show people based on their requirements (which platform they want to build the app for, how many pages it’ll have, where do they want their developer team to be etc.) how much it’d actually cost them to build an app. What was surprising was that over time our calculator became the go-to place on the internet. People would come here to find out how much it costs to build an app. We got so much traffic and so many leads we didn’t know what to do with them. That’s when we realised that we could help businesses by developing simple no-code software. Something that allowed them to make calculators like ours in the first place. And that’s how the idea for Outgrow came along.
Reshmi: How did you analyze the product-market fit initially?
Randy: We had a wide range of digital marketers in our network that we used in Outgrow early on. They had a lot of feedback and feature requests. But it was clear from their engagement and usage that building an interactive content piece with Outgrow was faster, easier and cheaper than working with developers and designers.
Reshmi: Who are your target customers? And what was your marketing strategy to reach out to the first few customers?
Randy: We serve a full breadth of customers ranging from freelancers, SMBs, all the way to Enterprises. And we are spread across 21 different industries. Most of our customers are just easily able to adapt our 2000+ premade interactive templates. There is no need for coders and developers. And for this reason, our customer base is expanding rapidly all the time. We see everyone from Instagram and Tiktok influencers to even Clubhouse users using Outgrow!
Reshmi: What is the hardest challenge you have faced as a founder?
Randy: Finding the right people to join the team early on without a lot of experience with recruiting.
Reshmi: How has the COVID pandemic affected your business? Have you changed your business strategies to align it with the new marketing environment?
Randy: When Covid-19 started we were in the middle of launching interactive applets and widgets for the Conference and Events industry. So we obviously had to postpone that launch to 2022 since no events were likely to take place in the foreseeable future. While we had put a lot of work into the product and launch preparations, we didn’t think too much about it and instead we shifted our attention to the pressing needs of other industries that would be impacted by the pandemic.
One of these was the Restaurants industry, which immediately got banned when the pandemic started, and was only allowed to sell food through takeaway/takeout services. This was not profitable for a lot of them since third party takeaway services like UberEats were eating into their earnings. So we decided to make interactive Build-Your-Own-Meal templates, meal and drinks recommendation bots, and takeout automation widgets that any restaurant could easily customise without coding and put on their website. This allowed restaurants to reduce their dependence on third party developers or takeout services. Our Restaurant Takeaway pack was eventually voted as a finalist in ProductHunt’s Coronavirus Hackathon by their 6 million strong monthly audience.
Reshmi: A business book that you would like to recommend?
Randy: Andy Grove High output management
Reshmi: A project management tool that you use?
Reshmi: What is your advice for current or aspiring entrepreneurs?
Randy: Spend more time focused on hiring at the beginning as it will pay off in the long run.
**In case you are a founder of a small business and want to be featured on our Founder Stories, or if you want to recommend someone for our Founder Stories series, you can connect here.