STARTUP OF THE MONTH
São Paulo, Brazil
LatinSF is happy to feature Sirena. A platform that did not only increase its revenue by 3x from last year but is expecting to double its number of users by this year, with 600 companies using the platform daily.
Sirena overcomes the fluctuation in the response time for both SMEs and big companies by providing advanced tools to support their customers through an underrated communication medium: WhatsApp*. Moreover, Sirena’s solutions provide better management control regarding customer feedback.
To understand Sirena’s success, we first need to understand the global WhatsApp phenomenon.
WhatsApp is a powerful communication channel worldwide. According to Sirena’s CEO, Migue Morkin, “WhatsApp is the most popular communication medium in the world, with almost 1 out of 4 people using the system”. This statement increases in Latin America, where the whole population rapidly adopted the tool, as it revolutionized the speed and cost of communication between Latin Americans (way before Facebook’s acquisition).
We need context to understand the powerful market penetration in this region. SMS messaging in Latin America was costly and pretty simple. The Latam Telecom industry took too long to provide affordable plans, in contrast to Telecommunications in the United States. Calls and messaging were unnecessarily expensive, which opened a window to other communication channels to offer appreciated value to the Latin Americans.
BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) was the first pioneer in the industry. It did pretty well during BlackBerry’s “Golden Age.” However, BBM was only available for BB. This context opened a gap in the market for the upcoming iPhone and Smartphone users, which were exponentially increasing. WhatsApp took advantage of this gap and offered its services for both BlackBerry and Smartphone customers. With the Latam Telecom industry still in offering a costly, antiquated solution for instant messaging, WhatsApp quickly gained users and shaped the modern times. Latam SMS messaging is now barely used, while the (now) Facebook’s company governs instant messaging.
Sirena was co-founded by Migue Morkin, Ezequiel Sculli, Lautaro Schiaffino, and Julian Bender, as the team struggled to improve communication with clients in their previous startup. The software offers a subscription model on its platform, which facilitates businesses’ approach to customers through WhatsApp (the company works with official BSPs to handle the integration). The app allows multiple employees to reach a chat with a customer at the same time, write notes on the side, and manage pre-drafted responses. “You can fulfill 95% of the customers’ needs in less than 15 minutes,” says Migue Morkin. “It simplifies the relationship within the business and the customer. The clients prefer to solve their questions through WhatsApp rather than waiting for a response on the phone… it’s a more comfortable and friendly channel for the customer. It takes the less possible effort to fulfill the transaction and the need”. Furthermore, Sirena saves a record of the customer conversation, which can be later used to understand its needs more rapidly for the next time. It also offers a CRM-like approach to managers, where they can see relevant statistics with direct detail on the customer-employee interaction.
The platform has cleverly taken advantage of one of the most powerful communication channels across the world. The platform understands the client’s reasoning in a quick, approachable, and effective service. They saw a big opportunity due to the behavior of Latam businesses, as they communicated continuously with their clients through WhatsApp. However, “There were not tools simple enough to manage this constant customer demand.” As Morkin affirms, “You are in the customer’s pocket – you can talk to him at any moment of the day, whenever they need you – It resolves uncertainty. It’s more comfortable for both the customer and the business”.
The platform has clients across most countries in Latin America, some countries in the Caribbean, and it is rapidly expanding in Europe and Southeast Asia. It has 55 employees across four different offices in São Paulo, Mexico City, Buenos Aires, and one recently opened in San Francisco. They’ve raised $3 M and are currently in the lookout of different investors across San Francisco and the United States.
According to Migue Morkin, Sirena’s short term goals are “to establish effectively in Latin America,” as they look to expand across India, Europe, and Southeast Asia in the near future.
Sirena is looking to automate its services shortly, by using AI to improve businesses’ response time.
For more information, visit Sirena’s webpage https://www.sirena.app
* Sirena complies with WhatsApp policies and manages all its integrations through official WhatsApp BSPs