When it comes to offering a free version or a freemium of an Enterprise SaaS product, there are a few vendors that set a great standard. When looking at some of the great SaaS players of recent years such as Wix, Zoom and DropBox, they all offer free versions and found their own unique way to measure that very special “aha” moment of their users. This so-called private moment later became an “Enterprise aha moment” leading these SaaS products to be successful, and become industry best practice..
At Hysolate, we’ve developed an innovative technology that separates risky or sensitive activities by creating an isolated local virtual machine deployed on the user endpoints. We launched Hysolate in late 2020 and spent the first 6 months focusing on Enterprise environments, and adjusting our product accordingly. The entry point to the Enterprise environment is usually with the IT/ Security teams who evaluate Hysolate. Not every evaluation process involves the end user, whose feedback is also important. As part of our Enterprise deployments we engaged with users looking to learn about their experiences, and if there were any challenges using our product. This was the type of feedback we were ultimately looking for: one that puts more focus on usability and the actions needed to make it more user friendly and valuable to the users.
This is where Hysolate Free comes into play. Being serious about product-led growth means not settling for the “top down” approach and seriously starting from the “bottom up” as well. This means seeking more feedback in an attempt to perfect our offering and its associated value. The marketing and sales benefits of such an approach are well known: more exposure, more top of funnel leads and more opportunities. At the same time, I argue that our Customer Success team will also greatly benefit from Hysolate Free for several reasons:
Firstly, with the free version, we focus on the level of interaction that end users have with our product. We started with fine-tuning the definition of “active user” and the relevant metrics to measure. We were able (with the support of the product / engineering team) to develop additional metrics to monitor the installation and healthy operations of the Hysolate agent. In addition, we built additional CS dashboards that will assist us in measuring the end user adoption. Eventually, these are the practices and tools that will serve us well when measuring the adoption of Hysolate in an enterprise environment.
Secondly, we used the Hysolate Free initiative to revisit our support processes. Providing support to an Enterprise Help desk/security team is different from providing support directly to an end user. They don’t call the help desk and expect them to fix the issue and as such expect a simple way of engaging with us. The internal exercise of analyzing the gaps that we had in place was very productive. It helped us in improving the way we monitor product issues (proactively rather than reactively) and the way we communicate with the end user by implementing a support chat on the website that was not available before.
The third aspect corresponds to the same “aha” moment that was referenced earlier with regards to other SaaS vendors (such as Wix, Zoom and DropBox). Prior to Hysolate Free, we were somewhat limited to the perception of IT and security professionals, that mainly focused on the enterprise “grade” capabilities such as: ease of installation, integration with deployment tools, security aspects and level of support required by their teams. The user experience and ease of use were not necessarily the main areas of attention. In this regard, we can safely assume that the real product adoption will not be driven only by the Enterprise project team that will deploy Hysolate but the end users themselves, whether they are lawyers, Customer Support or DevOps teams.
We quickly realized that our end users (regardless of their technical orientation) expect an intuitive user interface, solid performance (while we actually spin another operating system on top of the same hardware resources on their endpoint) and a simple way to do their work. When these users eventually realize the security and productivity benefits of Hysolate they will hopefully find their own private “aha” moment.
You could claim that the value of Hysolate to the Enterprise team is different from the value perceived by the end user. Well, we think that they eventually converge and when that happens, we will have a great product that users will love and Enterprises can easily deploy and easily integrate in their environments. With this objective in mind, Hysolate and our Customer Success team will promote the Free version and continuously be looking for the users’ feedback, while improving our capabilities to support and monitor the ongoing engagement.
On a personal note, leading a Customer Success team while launching a Free version is a great challenge. The insights we gained and lessons we learned are valuable and will greatly serve us in the future while driving our customers towards a meaningful adoption of Hysolate.
Want to isolate risky activities on your Windows 10 device? Try Hysolate Free yourself.