Having to navigate through different calendars and planners to make sure you don’t miss your virtual meetings is the story of most people’s lives in this pandemic world. Zoomies is a browser plug-in which helps you to speed-dial into your meetings on different video-conferencing platforms. It is the missing link between calendars and video-conferencing platforms.
In conversation with Piyush Santwani, Founder of Zoomies, we learn more about how we can use this tool to make attending online meetings easier and what led him to develop it.
What is the startup/product about? Give us a brief description of it.
Zoomies is a browser plugin that speed-dials to remote meetings. It connects with work and personal calendars and allows you to join meetings from one-place with one-click. It is the missing link between calendars and video-conferencing platforms. It frees you from the clutter of tracking meeting invitations on emails and managing multiple calendars.
You can view your schedule for the current week, create new meetings in your schedule, view details of a particular meeting and of course join any meeting with a single click – all this within a 400 x 600px white box. The product has an extremely informal design that catches the eye.
It supports Zoom, MS Teams, Google Meet, Hangouts, WebEx, Skype, GoToMeeting, and AWS Chime. Is your organization switching from Zoom to MS Teams? No problem, Zoomies is great for enabling portability across various video-conferencing platforms.
How many co-founders are there? Please introduce them and their backgrounds.
There are no co-founders. I happen to be a solopreneur. I am Piyush Santwani, I am a programmer and software architect. Many of my projects lie in questioning or inventing the future of human-computer interaction; whether that is designing new ways to learn with technology, or experimenting with the limits of AI and Machine Learning. I also make apps to bridge the accessibility gap between the Internet and the elderly. I am a Studio Ghibli fan and I play the guitar and sketch portraits for recreation. More about me here.
How did you come up with the idea? What motivated you to do this?
In the time of the pandemic, as schools went online, I saw my little niece struggling to find the meeting link to her online classroom. She was certainly not able to tune-in to this change. I realized how e-learning must have been a challenge for the teachers and students with respect to technology and access. I decided to simplify the accessibility to online lectures by developing a speed dialer to remote meetings.
Generally speaking, video conferencing has become the darling of remote workers during the COVID-19 crisis. From workplace collaboration to yoga classes, weddings, graduations, etc. the world has adopted this medium as a way to connect. Zoomies helps to manage an overwhelming number of meetings by providing a simple-to-use speed-dial to quickly connect to your meetings.
What is your target market? Why do you think your product will appeal to?
Whether you are a student with 7-8 online lectures per day, a Project Manager with numerous meetings or, a freelancer working for multiple clients, every domain could use a speed dialer. Zoomies caters to a wide range of audience.
It’s a simple-to-use productivity tool with a minimal interface that sits quietly in the most popular internet browser. People like minimalism and Zoomies is all about eliminating the clutter involved in organizing calendars and video conferences – the most popular tools for general task management and collaboration.
What are the marketing plans apart from the product hunt/beta list launch? How are you planning to acquire new users?
I am writing emails to primary and secondary schools to try out the product with a sample of their teachers and students.
Do you have a separate dedicated team to take care of marketing (digital marketing/traditional marketing)? Which digital platforms are you focusing more on?
No. I do not have a dedicated team for marketing. I am primarily focused on using LinkedIn and Slack.
What according to you is the biggest challenge that you faced? Is it product development or marketing or scaling or … ?
I have a maker’s mindset. Hence, product development has always been the easier part. I’ve struggled with marketing in the past since it’s not the domain where my expertise lies. But Zoomies has received a whole leap of love and feedback from its early audience. The pat-on-the-back feeling derived from the consistent rise in the user count and positive reviews has made the marketing challenge less stressful for me.
What are the future plans with the product/startup? Any new features you are planning on?
Zoomies although minimal is extremely feature-reach already. But I am currently processing the thought of introducing Android and iOS mobile apps for Zoomies.
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