Srikrishnan Ganesan and his team had been previously working on a chat based app called PhonOn. After the launch of the product they saw that the app users were interacting with the team through their Facebook page. These interactions were mainly to report bugs, or ask for clarifications on how a certain feature worked etc. Even though the product was a messaging app, their users didn’t have a way to engage with the developers.
The team soon found that there was no easy way to reach out to users for informing them about new feature launches, and in some cases for feedback from users. To solve this problem, a channel was built within the app to interact with users.
Soon a realization dawned on them that this is a problem a lot of apps out there face, and as a result they started working on a WhatsApp like inbox for apps to feature within, through which app owners or developers can engage and communicate with their users.
The solution developed, Konotor, is a 2-way communication service that helps businesses talk to their mobile app users by creating a chat inbox inside their app (like a WhatsApp within an app), and lets you engage with your users. App users can contact the business or the developers via voice or text messages through the app.
The tool can be used for marketing, promotions, pushing update announcements, targeted user notifications, transactional messaging, re-engagement, and as a channel for support or feedback.
For developers, the tool’s web dashboard lets them segment their users based on developer set criteria or app usage patterns. They can use this feature to promote, market, engage, solicit feedback. Customer support team can live chat with users and assigning income requests to a single agent or multiple agents. Developers can also use the API to enable event triggered or transactional messaging, like when users completes a purchase etc.
The service is currently live with a subscription based model – the monthly subscription varies based on the number of active users of the product.
Currently the bootstrapped service has had over 70 sign ups, 9 customers, with 3 live on app stores already, which include Sportskeeda, Shopera and Scandid. The service is being piloted on more apps currently and is expected to go live on them soon.
The Konotor team consists of Srikrishnan Ganesan, Vignesh & Deepak. Srikrishnan handles partnerships, planning and iOS development, and was the Product Head at Jigsee prior to this. Vignesh & Srikrishnan are college mates and worked together at Verizon and Rediff.com. Vignesh manages product and analytics, and used to work as Product Manager at Zynga before this. Deepak , who previously worked as a Platform Engineer at Ebay, handles architecture, server, web and Android development.