Insights - Brand & Marketing

Memorable Branding From Freshworks

In the wake of Freshworks’ IPO, we take a look at its interesting history of brand-building

freshworks brand strategy
Image Credit: Freshworks

Freshworks became the first major Indian software product company to list on Nasdaq, when it made its debut at a $10 billion valuation earlier this month.

The company has a history of great brand-building and we took a look at some of their more interesting initiatives.

Rip-off or Not

A year after Girish Mathrubootham founded Freshdesk (later rebranded to Freshworks), Mikkel Svane, CEO of competitor Zendesk called them a “A Freaking-RIP-OFF” on Twitter. 

In response, Freshdesk created this cheeky website called RipOffOrNot, inviting Zendesk customers to try out their product.

How Freshworks Built Their Brand
After the Zendesk CEO called them a rip-off, Freshworks launched this site

Rebrand to Freshworks

In 2017, Freshworks realised that despite having multiple products, they were still mostly associated with their customer support offering, Freshdesk. They rationalised their brand architecture and created an umbrella brand called Freshworks.

Freshworks old and new logo
Freshdesk rebrands to Freshworks

A Simple & Clear Brand Promise

Freshworks’ brand promise is to help businesses find and keep their customers for life. Their most recent campaign articulates this as “Delight made easy – We make it fast and easy for businesses to delight their customers and employees”

#Failsforce

In 2018, Freshworks launched a campaign called #Failsforce against bigger competitor Salesforce. Former CMO, David Thompson says, “This 2 year integrated marketing campaign targeting Salesforce customers, partners, press, and influencers was, perhaps, the most aggressive guerrilla action taken by any upstart competitor against a dominant leader since, well, Salesforce took on Siebel.”

While the annual Salesforce conference was going on, Freshworks floated a blimp over the Salesforce Tower in San Francisco and took to the streets with a marching band that called for the ‘end of bloated legacy software.’

Freshworks competitor strategy
Freshworks floated this blimp over the Salesforce tower in San Francisco

Designing for Browser Girl

Freshworks targets small and medium businesses and has configured their website and product demos to address this audience. Founder Girish Mathrubootham says that design always keeps in mind a user persona that he calls ‘Browser Girl.’

“In 2 minutes, Browser Girl has to like the product and in 20 minutes she has to feel at home with it, otherwise she will close the window and go. When my product team wants to launch a new feature, I don’t sit down and let them explain it to me. I ask them to send me the link to see if it is easy for someone to figure out on their own.”

Girish Mathrubootham, Founder, Freshworks in this interview with YourStory

As part of their commitment to being transparent, the Freshworks site puts all pricing details upfront on the site. If you click a ‘View Detailed Pricing’ link, you get this pop-up.

Freshworks transparent pricing
This pop-up is displayed when you click a link called ‘View pricing details’

Deep Content & Ecosystem Strategy

Freshworks creates a very large volume of high-quality content – from blogs to podcasts. They also have a number of initiatives for the ecosystem, from a Freshworks Academy to a Freshworks Community and Freshworks for Startups.

Feeling inspired? Tell us what you think has worked best for Freshworks?

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