Leadferno Launches to Power the Front End of Five-Star Customer Experiences

When Aaron Weiche, CEO and co-founder of Leadferno, started his previous company GatherUp, the goal was to help businesses organize data on customer experiences and boost their reputations. Now, Weiche is onto his next venture, which aims to set up the communications infrastructure that will help businesses kick off those five-star customer experiences.

Leadferno, which launched Tuesday morning, is an SMS-based communications platform that helps businesses generate leads online and text with prospective customers. 

Aaron Weiche, co-founder and CEO of Leadferno

Weiche emphasized that Leadferno’s ambition is not just to help businesses text customers, though there appears to be room for a texting solution in a business communications market dominated by chatbots, email, and telephone. Leadferno’s goal is to help businesses use texting to generate leads and convert prospective customers into paying customers — hence the name.

“We’re going to be focused on conversion,” Weiche said. “How do you convert website lurkers and visitors into starting a conversation as easily as possible?”

How it works

Consumers will see a chat box when they navigate to a business website. The chat box may just ask them to leave a phone number, and then Leadferno will send an automated message on behalf of the business to kick-start the conversation.

Alternatively, to drive leads, businesses can include other calls to action. For example, a business might prompt customers to get an estimate or gift card. This is part of Weiche’s vision to empower businesses not just to text customers but to drive overall leads through the medium of SMS.

On the business side, owners and operators will open up a dashboard including all customer communications. Individual employees can claim a customer to keep outreach organized. They can also send already-uploaded photos and standard replies to streamline communication.

The business-facing Leadferno dashboard

Leadferno aims to serve a wide market: SMBs, multi-location brands, and digital natives. The company is integrating with Facebook Messenger, one of the main ways consumers interact with businesses, and plans to integrate with Google My Business.

Why texting

Weiche saw the need for Leadferno when he was working with businesses on reputation management as one of the founders of GatherUp. Essentially, he is moving from the back end to the front end of customer experience management.

Weiche noted that when a business masters front-end communication, “You’re already making an incredible impression and setting the tone for a five-star experience.”

He also likened the current opportunity for business texting solutions to that of reviews, GatherUp’s focus, some five years ago. It used to be the case that businesses needed to be sold on the importance of online reviews. Now, reputation management is a marketing staple. Weiche anticipates that texting businesses — and providing businesses the power to connect with consumers over text — will similarly become ubiquitous and table stakes in years to come.

Weiche did not disclose the identity of his co-founder. Mike Blumenthal, an SEO and reputation management expert and a co-founder of GatherUp, is an investor and advisor of Leadferno. 

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Joe Zappa is the Managing Editor of Street Fight. He has spearheaded the newsroom's editorial operations since 2018 and compiled the daily newsletter since 2016. Joe is a journalist who has written widely about technology, business, and politics. You can contact him at jzappa@streetfightmag.com.