Enthusiasm for maintenance, ease of use and effortless integration. The Wowflow story is a true success story. Wowflow was properly positioned to be a digital service that could see the crisis as an opportunity. And Drazen Ivanis is not the kind of person who sits and waits with his arms folded: he wants to constantly develop and step on the gas. Supporting entrepreneurs professionally and with role models. That’s what konsultori Role Models are for. He has implemented his strategy well during the crisis.
What was your strategy in the crisis, your first step at the beginning and why?
My first thought was: Corona will make us or break us. If my idea has real potential, it will show. If not, then it’s time to do something new, because you also have to learn to get off a dead horse. At the time, we were in the Vienna Business Agency program, where Petra Wolkenstein, among others, supported us. They told me encouragingly: Hey, you’re digital! Your customers are still processing the new situation and will need 1-3 weeks to reposition themselves. You’re going to have to go digital. Fortunately, we also got funding.
Wowflow is a digital solution and in that sense we are similar to Zoom: the crisis accelerated our success. At that time we only had a few thousand euros in revenue, I was a bootstrapped-Startup without investors. In 2020, we doubled our turnover and got 300 thousand euros via well-known investors.
Winston Churchill put it in a nutshell: “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”
What has changed in your strategy now?
The strategy has remained pretty much the same, we have put more emphasis on communication. I’ve become clearer about how our message is received. I have more conversations, prepare even more for pitches. I’ve interpreted the importance of myself as a founder differently and emphasized the benefits of the product. We’ve improved our product explanation: we’ve been able to show that you’re 30 percent more efficient with Wowflow. That was a big learning process with presentation and with customer communication. Sales definitely became more important. But the customers were the most important thing.
How did you communicate with your customers? How did your customers react to the new situation?
Customers have responded with an open mind. They have also been forced by the crisis to use digital tools. Many of our customers never wanted to make a Zoom call, now it has become an everyday habit like using a smartphone. They now understand better how to work digitally, and that means faster communication. Technical management, technical facility management has also become clearer.
Of course, the circumstances created by the crisis were not perfect. But this crisis made it necessary to be innovative to overcome it – Wowflow is an innovation. I am glad that I did not lose any customers during this period, on the contrary, more licenses were bought. What we offered was a good solution, we are contactless & digital.
What helps you the most or who do you ask for advice – who do you exchange ideas with?
I keep coming back to Konsultori and Petra Wolkenstein. In the meantime, we have also built up various partnerships: Marketing, Sales. We rely very heavily on specialists, so we have built up such a network. For example, we have a LinkedIn marketing specialist. The reason we learned to ask experts is that they are very efficient in their field. So they can provide the right answer relatively quickly.
Petra Wolkenstein, among others, is an expert in orientation. She has been very supportive by simply asking the right questions and providing clarity. How to better navigate through the next few months, how to get our message across! What are our goals – these issues are often not as obvious as you think.
If you could wish for one skill, what would it be?
I would like to be able to acquire new knowledge at lightning speed – like the heroes in the Matrix. For example, how to pilot an airplane. Instead of sitting in class for years, I could absorb the information in the blink of an eye. My brain would be a kind of hard drive and I could download the knowledge like a program. Imagine what we could accomplish!
What are you most proud of?
Above all, I am proud that I seem to be a trustworthy person, because many talents follow me. Our employees share my vision, they sweat with the company, they are very committed. They might make more money and have to work less in other companies, but they are with us. They are motivated and loyal, that means a lot to me.
Wowflow has delivered business results: We’ve managed to get users to get along with our app, without any training at all. It wasn’t easy, it took us a good 2 years to achieve that. Now our customers enjoy using our software.
We are a management system for technical management. That is, we show how the technical management of maintenance and repair should look like. If that works, then we get going. One company with 90 branches sent only a short handout to its employees on how to install the app and how the login works. That’s all it takes: If someone has 90 branches, they can use Wowflow to coordinate all branches with 3 employees.
Wowflow has won several awards:
- Wirtschaftskammer Wien Innovation to company challenge 2018
- AWS Creative Impact Förderung – Konsultation und Beratung mit Petra Wolkenstein
- WU Wien Startup Entrepreneurship Avenue
- European Retail Startup Night 2020 3. Platz
- Best Virtual Teamwork Solution in Austria 2020 according to Central European Startup Awards