Product Idea: Mobile App for Sales

By | February 10, 2010

I had this idea while talking to a friend.  It’s a different spin on a previous idea about competitive analysis and product management.

Summary
A mobile app that connects to a SaaS service which gives a salesperson a unique view into prospects.   Specifically, helps make social connections with prospects.

In Story form
A saleswoman is sitting in a lobby, waiting for her appointment to get her and bring her to a conference room.  She opens up her mobile app and hits the name of the guy she is meeting.  She jumps through a few tabs, Blogs, Tweets, Connections (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter follower, MySpace, etc), Company News and What’s New.  On the Tweets tab she sees a tweet about seeing a great movie that weekend.  She is also notified that a linkedIn connection of hers replied to that tweet agreeing about the movie.  Lastly, on the company news page she reads the latest press release of the company.

The appointment arrives.  On the way to the conference room, the saleswoman mentions that she just talking to a friend about a movie they saw and casually mentions the name.  The prospect perks up and says, “Yeah!  That person replied to my twitter post!”  Conversation ensues.  Topics about the press release are discussed too.

In the meeting, several new people arrived and handed out their business cards.  During the part of the meeting where the saleswoman was not engaged, she punched in the names of the new people.  The app instantly adds them to her portfolio of people.  She sees that one of them is friends with a friend on Facebook.  Later, the saleswoman says, “Your name sounds familiar.  Do you know [friend]?”  Conversation ensues.

Requirements

  • Central system to login and enter credentials for Salesforce, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
  • Unified schema to keep track of connections
  • Web crawler to find blogs, news, and any other information.
  • Mobile app UI
  • Subscriptions $10 a month per person

I imagine it’s free to download and get limited or redacted information.

The technology is not especially difficult to build.  Lots of open source tools to help with the web crawling.  Bandwidth wouldn’t be enormous.  I think it’s a winner.  If anyone builds this and makes a fortune, please put some money in the tip jar on the right.

Side note:  I am starting to feel less aversion to starting a business one day.  I used to think I would never ever ever do it again.  However, I think what I hated was a service business.  Having to sell a big project and then work through it.  However, a technology company; building apps like this.  That might be fun.  If someone would fund a year or two.  I probably could do it with an outsourcing model. However, I don’t really want to do the VC “get funding” thing.  I also don’t want to do marketing.  Well, my plans aren’t well baked.  However, I love coming up with product ideas.

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