DemoChimp, a SaaS company that intelligently automates product demonstrations for sales and marketing professionals, has received two Go-To-Market grants from Utah Valley University’s Business Resource Center, enabling the company to pay for its initial lead generation prospecting contact lists.
The grants awarded last fall totaled $10,000 ($5,000 from Phase I – Is the Idea Good, and $5,000 from Phase II – is the Business Model Viable).
DemoChimp’s CEO and founder Garin Hess attributes the initial inspiration for DemoChimp to his previous software startup. After producing six demos in one day, Hess thought it seemed odd they weren’t automating something so repetitive. Upon exiting his previous startup, Hess started DemoChimp after discovering there were few, if any solutions available to help companies effectively automate product demonstrations.
DemoChimp intelligently automates product demonstrations so salespeople can spend less time demoing and more time closing sales. A patent-pending personalization engine configures the demo for each prospect’s unique interests, similar to how an expert salesperson would. The personalization engine not only increases customer engagement, but also allows the salesperson to gather analytics on how the prospect interacts with the demo feed.
“It’s a completely unique approach and fundamentally transforms how effective you can be at sales and marketing,” said Hess. “With this kind of visibility in to the customer’s profile, half of the salesperson’s work is done already.”
The company has even seen DemoChimp dramatically shorten its own sales cycle in addition to delivering more qualified leads for their clients. One DemoChimp customer reported measuring a 65 percent increase in sales efficiency after using the product for just six weeks.
According to Hess, moving DemoChimp to UVU’s BRC and being involved with their G2M program has been the catalyst to the growth they’ve experienced. Before moving to the BRC, Hess’s basement served as the official DemoChimp headquarters.
“The BRC’s proximity to UVU and BYU allowed us to easily recruit front-line business development reps from those schools on our first sales team,” said Hess. “That has, in turn, led to extremely strong sales growth in the first three months out of Beta. Our sales success has been a leading contributor to our ability to so quickly attract investors and close the substantial seed capital that we have raised so far.”
The G2M program has helped DemoChimp fine-tune the rigor around its early product/market fit validation. Hess said the company was already doing a lot of the right things, but the additional training and collaboration with other startups helped illuminate ways to improve their process, which he said ultimately led to a much better minimum viable product when they went to beta.
“It was like giving us the prospecting rights to a gold mine. We hired the miners and they’ve been going at it and finding some really great success,” he said.
With DemoChimp’s recent capital infusion, the company intends to expand its sales, marketing and development teams. Their next goal is to expand monthly recurring revenue by 300% and finish closing their seed capital funding round by the end of the summer.
The G2M grant program is independently administered on a regional basis through the Utah Science and Technology Research initiative’s (USTAR) economic development teams at Dixie State University, UVU and Weber State University. UVU is focused on pre-revenue, high potential startups developing new high tech manufacturing, IT hardware and software technologies.
“The G2M Accelerator program provides entrepreneurs and business owners the training, tools, mentoring, and access to capital they need to test their business ideas and products with customers, validate their business models, and ultimately scale their businesses with effective sales and marketing techniques.” said Peter Jay, associate director of economic development for UVU and USTAR. “It also provides companies opportunities to network and collaborate with other companies in the program. Its proximity and connection to UVU allows companies to attract high level talent.”