It’s not often that I get a chance to take a step back and look at Zipwhip in the bigger picture. As any CEO of a fast-growing startup knows, the day-to-day fire drills and problem solving takes most of your energy and attention. But then an award nomination like the one we just got makes you stop and think about how far we’ve come and the incredible position we’re in as an organization.
We were just announced as one of five finalists in the Pacific Northwest for GeekWire’s “Next Tech Titan.” Previous winners of this award include Tableau and Smartsheet, and the four other nominees on the list this year have all reached billion-dollar valuations. So what makes us compare?
We are on the edge of one of the largest emerging markets that tech has seen in decades. There are over 200 million landline, VoIP and toll-free phone numbers in North America, but only a fraction of those can send and receive texts today. Text enabling every business phone number will drive a transformational shift in how consumers and businesses communicate, since never again will you need to wonder whether or not you can text a business instead of call or email. And given the preferences of today’s consumers, you probably won’t want to call or email. Consumers prefer the convenience, immediacy and directness of texting with businesses.
As the company with the front-row seat, I can tell you that the shift is already taking place as consumers reject more traditional forms of communication. Recent Zipwhip research shows that 97% of people reject phone calls from businesses or unknown phone numbers and 96% find phone calls disruptive. Meanwhile, 91% of consumers today are receiving texts from businesses and 74% say they respond to those texts within just one hour. And 43% of people have even proactively texted a business before knowing whether or not the message will go through. Those numbers will continue to climb as more businesses open their phone numbers to texting.
More than 35,000 businesses text using Zipwhip technology, and we run hundreds of millions of messages through our network every month. We’re best-positioned to tackle this enormous market not only because of our momentum and infrastructure, but because we actually created this industry. It was impossible to text a company’s existing landline, VoIP or toll-free phone number until we negotiated the capability with the landline and mobile carrier networks in 2014. Since then, the texting-for-business ecosystem has thrived.
Now more than ever, consumers are demanding the capability to text with the businesses they work with. So we’re here with some of Seattle’s unicorns, ready to meet that need.
If you’d like to vote for us for Text Tech Titan, you have until March 6. Thank you in advance to our community of supporters, customers, families and friends. We couldn’t do this without you!