A couple months ago we crossed a major threshold for any early-stage software company – $1 million in annual recurring revenue. While we still have a lot of work to do, both with product and building the organization, I wanted to stop and reflect a bit on what we have accomplished in the past 2 years.
Before we get into the post, and really just in case you don’t scroll down, I want to make sure you watch our music video for the song we created to celebrate hitting $1 million in revenue (full details on the process of creating the song are outlined towards the bottom of this post, including screenshots and links to docs we used).
And of course you can listen to the song on your favorite platforms (add to your playlists):
- Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/ryan-shank-1/we-hit-a-mil
- Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/track/0yRjHvMg5Zt2ga2dog2lgq?si=bQy5gnmVQM2C2Tk_eeHL7A
- iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/album/id1475741656?ls=1&app=itunes
- Apple Music: http://itunes.apple.com/album/id/1475741656
Okay, now back to our blog post…
For the sake of transparency, here’s some metrics on our growth over the past 2 years:
We started PhoneWagon back in 2017 due to frustrations with the current call tracking products on the market. As a side hustle, I was personally driving phone calls as leads to local businesses and just wanted something simple to track and record the calls. A lot of the existing products were hard to use, overwhelming, and expensive. So we decided to launch PhoneWagon as a simple, beautiful call tracking tool.
After going through Techstars in the summer of 2017 and subsequently raising over $1.7 million from some amazing investors, we were off to the races. I took the approach that brand and content would help us differentiate in a crowded market so we spent a lot of time making videos and putting out unique content that people would want to consume. Before we knew it, customers were signing up and we were figuring out how to onboard, retain, and grow those clients.
Office and Team
We jumped around co-working spaces before finally signing a 2-year lease at this amazing spot by Madison Square Park in New York City. Come by if you’re ever in the neighborhood.
We have kept our team really lean and today we’re just 9 people. I’ve realized that people are going to be what makes this company succeed – nothing else. My co-founder is one of the most talented and hardest working people I’ve met. He’s helping us attract and build a team of A-players ready to change the world. I’m spending a lot more of my time recruiting and making sure we have the best people in the world on our team.
(these pics are actually about a year old but I still think they’re cool)
We’re so excited about the future of PhoneWagon. We’re moving beyond just call tracking and analytics and will be launching world-class voice and messaging products in the upcoming months. Our goal is to help all businesses win and delight more customers through voice and SMS. We think automation rules, not bots, will help us accomplish this goal.
This is our new conversations dashboard. We will be moving all our call analytics over to this dashboard in the next few months as well as launching more voice and messaging features.
This is a sneak peak at some of the automation rules we are going to be launching. In the example below, we’re sending a custom text message to a missed call from a client who lives in New York or San Francisco, after waiting 30 seconds.
The Music Video
Since we’re a team of marketers who like to have fun and create content, of course we made a song and music video to celebrate hitting $1 million in revenue.
We made everything from scratch including the beat and lyrics. Here is a quick screenshot of me giving some feedback to the producer on how I think the beat should sound.
Truth is, I’ve always wanted to make a song and music video but had no idea where to even start. I thought this was a good excuse to challenge myself to figure it out.
I’ll probably write a blog post on the process (it actually took 3 months) but here’s a quick version.
- I found an awesome producer named Roger Gamon on SoundBetter
- I sent him this doc with a bunch of thoughts about how I wanted the beat to sound
- Roger would send me beats and I would give him feedback
- We started humming to the beat and eventually turned it into these lyrics
- I recorded the vocals using Garage Band on my Mac and a microphone I bought from Guitar Center.
- Roger then mixed and mastered the vocals and the beat and eventually delivered a final song.
- After I had the finished song, I sent a DM to Austin Hein on Instagram to shoot a music video
- We shot the video in 2 days and now I had final song and music video
We think this song can be the anthem for all startups when they hit that million dollar milestone.
If you think it’s interesting and/or like the song, I’d love it so much if you shared it.
In summary, we’re super grateful to all our customers for trusting us with their phone numbers and call tracking. We take that very seriously and cannot emphasize how appreciative we are for your business. If you know anyone that would be a good fit for PhoneWagon, please recommend us or make an intro and I’ll take it from there!
PS – I’m actually writing a detailed blog post about everything we had to overcome in the past 2 years including getting hit with a pretty big lawsuit, an ex-employee stealing our checkbook and writing himself fraudulent checks, international scam artists using our software for fraud, and some other crazy things. If you want a sneak peak, the outline is here. If you want a first look at the post, email me and I’ll add you to the distribution list.