Hello Wefunder Investors,
We’ve now concluded the thirteenth month since the WeFunder second round financing was successfully completed. As in previous months, I wanted to provide you with an update on the many things happening with the OodlesDeals mobile app, and overall at the company.
Final Summer Frenzy Update (#3)
As I mentioned in both the July ’18 & August ’18 monthly WeFunder updates, every member of the OodlesDeals team — Product Development, Engineering, Sales & Marketing — have worked with an accelerated sense of urgency this past summer, with the aim of substantially growing company revenue as the new school year begins.
Planning for multiple new school launches, faster vendor sign-ups via a no-risk proposition to restaurants, and an updated version of the OodlesDeals app that makes it even simpler for our users to transact via the app, were the priority projects occupying the majority of the team’s time this past summer. The OodlesDeals management team is confident that successful execution of these initiatives will drive a substantial growth in engagement via the app, with a direct positive impact on quarterly revenue growth.
I promised to go into deeper detail in each of these three areas over the course of the summer. In this month’s update, I will describe in greater specificity the vendor recruitment activities conducted by the OodlesDeals sales team, both at the current schools where OodlesDeals is already present, and the new schools the sales team is in the process of organizing.
DePaul University Launch Solidifies OodlesDeals Chicago Presence
The OodlesDeals launch at UC - Berkeley in early September was executed right in line with the other schools where OodlesDeals launched over the past twelve months. This is yet another proof point of the six-week replicatable model the sales team has developed, for launching new schools for OodlesDeals. We kicked off the presence of OodlesDeals on the Berkeley campus via an event at one of the top quality pizza restaurants in the Berkeley area. Since the launch event, hundreds of students at UC - Berkeley have downloaded OodlesDeals, and are already busy transacting at the restaurants with the SCORCHER deals available in Berkeley via the app.
As you know, this transaction process is a patented protected one, and is what makes the OodlesDeals app truly unique and added-value to use.
Loyola University in Chicago is the other school I mentioned in last month’s report, and the launch event, similar in form to the event executed at UC - Berkeley, will take place later this week. The below image provides an excellent visual of the launch event. Our team is confident that once the launch event is completed at Loyola University, hundreds of students will have downloaded OodlesDeals, similar to that experienced at UC - Berkeley and previous schools where OodlesDeals is now available.
Later this month, DePaul University will become the third University in the greater Chicago area — Northwestern University, Loyola University and DePaul — where OodlesDeals will be launched. The OodlesDeals sales team is busy finalizing the sign-ups of restaurants known to be frequented by students at DePaul, and has already secured some of the top restaurants that students from DePaul University have mentioned for our app to target. With the launch of DePaul, students with OodlesDeals in Chicago will be able to transact at any of the restaurants within the ~ 10 mile length between DePaul University and Northwestern University. The OodlesDeals management team sees this as the beginning of a ‘super-zone’ of restaurants, enabling a natural growth in penetration of OodlesDeals beyond the core student demographic.
New Vendor Sign-up Process Triples Pipeline From Previous Quarter
A more streamlined and systematic process for recruitment of vendors for the OodlesDeals app was brainstormed by the sales team at the beginning of the summer. Many of the current customers of OodlesDeals, especially those that have been with the company for multiple years, were consulted in the development of this new process.
The new process consists of three basic elements — (1) presentation of the unique value proposition of OodlesDeals and the specific consumer target we attract, and the size of market and revenue this represents for each individual customer; (2) economic modeling done on-site with each customer, and how the 2+ person SCORCHER process of the OodlesDeals app contributes both revenue and net positive contribution margin to their business, inclusive of the payment to the company. This is especially true when relativized to delivery, which the majority of customers utilize as part of their overall marketing mix. Lastly, (3) options in billing to each customer based on their unique needs, that are either fully marketing and awareness generation focused, sales and transaction focused, or a combination of both. All provided with a try-before-you-buy trial period, so the optimization is established before a longer-term relationship is set.
Experimentation with each step of this process took place throughout the summer, leading to a finalized process that has already resulted in a three-fold growth in the prospects pipeline for the company, in Q3 ’19 vs Q2 ’19. More than 40% of the prospects identified have converted to new customers of OodlesDeals and are already on the app, both at schools where OodlesDeals was already present, and at the new Universities targeted for launch this new school year.
The OodlesDeals sales team firmly believes this new process can be utilized at a similar velocity of pipeline generation and customer conversion as the company grows in number of Universities launched in the upcoming years.
This next statement is the same one I’ve made in the past, and will always remain sincerely true — Asheesh and I owe our sincere thanks to all of you who have helped us get to this point.
Co-founder & CEO
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