Employee No. 4, +2% Revenue and Another Coverage in Handelszeitung
Open Startup Report November 2021

We welcome the first developer to the team, our revenue increased for the third month in a row, and Handelszeitung wrote about Friendly again: welcome to our Open Startup Report for November 2021.

November at Friendly in the numbers

  • 💵 MRR: CHF 11,422 | ~$12,397 (+2%)
  • 👩 Active customers: 80 (-1%)
  • 💔 Monthly customer churn: 12% (+213%)
  • 👋 New Trials: 11 (-31%)
  • 🔎 Website Visits: 3,136 (-10%)
  • 📮 Emails sent (Automate): 341’027 (+13%)
  • 📈 Pageviews tracked (Analytics): 678’603 (+9%)
  • 💸 Costs: CHF 12’849 | ~$13,952 (-)
  • 🧾 Profit and Loss: CHF -1’427 | ~ -$1,548 (-10%)

This is what moved us in November:

Our team grows to 4 employees

Brady Cargle

I was frustrated. Several customers had complained about bugs in Friendly Automate. And they were, unfortunately, right. The bugs were troublesome and interfered with usage. Bugs in a software are nothing out of the ordinary. The only bad thing was: we couldn’t fix them.

We didn’t have our own developers. Sounds crazy for a software company, but that’s how it was. That was possible because we rely completely on open source. We didn’t have enough money for our own developers.

However, this made us completely dependent on the open source community. We were able to lobby for certain bugs to be fixed as quickly as possible. However, it was not up to us when this would happen.

This situation was increasingly stressful for me and also for us as a company. At the same time, our finances still don’t allow us to hire someone for this. And I’m not a fan of unpaid internships and precarious jobs. At least, I wouldn’t ask anyone to do that for us.

Then one day we received the following e-mail. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. A developer was offering to work for us for free!

During the conversation, Brady told us that he would like to gain experience as a developer. He had saved enough to be able to work for free for a while. And he was indeed humanly as pleasant and as passionate as he had announced in the mail.

Since early November, Brady Cargle has been working as the first developer and employee No. 4 for Friendly!

His first tasks included revising the WordPress plugin for Friendly Analytics and creating a new WordPress plugin for Friendly Automate.

Next, Brady will dive into Friendly Automate, respectively the underlying Mautic software, and work with the core team to develop new features and fix bugs.

As soon as it is financially possible, we will, of course, pay him a fair salary and compensate him for the unpaid time.

And I’m happy about this milestone – and looking forward to many more developers in our team 🙂

Revenue increased by +2%, loss down by -10

In November, our monthly recurring revenue (MRR) increased slightly by +2% to CHF 11,422 (~$12,397), marking the third consecutive month of growth.

We did have more cancellations in November than in the previous month. Fortunately, we were able to more than compensate for this through upgrades and new customers.

Usage of our software also increased. Our customers sent over +13% more emails with Friendly Automate (341,027 total) and tracked over +9% more page views with Friendly Analytics (678,603 total).

Our costs remained almost unchanged compared to the previous month. Due to the simultaneous increase in sales, our loss fell by over -10% to “only” Fr. -1,427 (~ -$1,548).

Once again for November we are sharing all of our costs including salaries. Here they are:

The Handelszeitung wrote again about Friendly

The Handelszeitung wrote about Friendly again in November. Already in September, the largest Swiss business newspaper reported on Friendly as an example of an Open Startup – on a full page.

This time it was about a new charter for the ethical handling of data. The charter was developed by the business association Swico under the leadership of National Councilor Judith Bellaiche.

In the report on the charter, editor Tina Fischer included my voice under the heading “Ethics for digital gold” – many thanks for that.

Click here for the complete article from the current issue of Handelszeitung (German only):

Marketing Automation is growing. Even before Covid, the marketing automation industry was growing over 10% year over year.

The global Covid crisis has accelerated this development. More and more companies are investing in digital technologies, and the results speak for themselves: 80% of companies have been able to increase both their leads and conversions with marketing automation. And 91% of users agree that marketing automation is essential to the overall success of their online marketing activities.

It’s no surprise then that marketing automation is one of the fastest growing digital marketing industries, expected to reach $8.42 billion dollars by 2027.

In early November, we presented the five marketing automation trends that we think will define 2022, and that you should know if you want to take full advantage of marketing automation opportunities.

Friendly at Mautic Conference Europe 2021

Joey Keller (1st from right in the back) with participants of the Mautic Conference Europe 2021. Photo by Ekke Guembel.

On November 8 and 9, the Mautic Conference Europe took place in Belgium. This is the largest on-site event around Mautic.

Mautic, by the way, is the most popular open source marketing automation software and the basis of Friendly Automate. Friendly is one of only six official partners of Mautic.

On the first day of the conference, nine speakers from six countries and three continents shared their experience around Marketing Automation and Mautic.

Our Joey Keller was on site as a member of the Mautic product team and also acted as moderator of the conference:

Joey moderating Mautic Conference Europe 2021

The second day was a “Community Day”. Among other things, it was about testing improvements and fixes together. The result of the day: 62 changes were successfully tested and will be rolled out in the next version of Mautic.

Joey at “work” (back left)

For a more detailed review and more photos, check out Mautic’s official blog post.

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