Build a kick-ass team!

SwipeGuide helps you to create, publish and share visual user guides instantly

Please introduce yourself and your startup SwipeGuide to our readers!
Hi, my name is Daan Assen and I am founder of SwipeGuide. SwipeGuide is an online platform that enables companies to create, edit and share visual step-by-step instructions that are published instantly to mobile devices. We offer them in an intuitive mobile app that allows customers to successfully perform tasks that are new or complex.

How did you get the idea to SwipeGuide?
I got the idea in a plane back from coaching a Startup Weekend in Timisoara. With my background in e-learning & instruction the airplane safety instruction card puzzled me. I felt that this instruction job could be done better with mobile technology. I was lucky to be with 2 Developers that built a first prototype on the stop-over at Munich Airport.

How difficult was the start and what challenges you had to overcome?
We were accepted in an accelerator with our prototype. People loved the idea of making manuals & instructions more engaging and available in your pocket. First challenge was to find the right focus. Instruction is everywhere and we looked at everything from food recipes to product manuals and healthcare work instructions. After finding focus, finding a co-founder was another challenge. I was not 100% available and needed a strong co-founder with complementary skills and dedication. I was lucky to find Willemijn Schneyder through my network of online marketers. With her joining SwipeGuide really took off in 2016.

Who is your target audience?
Our current target audience is (digital) marketing & product managers of manufacturers of consumer products with some level of complexity. We work for clients in consumer electronics (e.g. Philips) and home appliances (e.g. Quby). We also look at applications in work instructions for service & maintenance engineers now. Target audience there is quality or service management.

What is the USP of your startup?
We improve the customer experience and support. That leads to better customer satisfaction and reduces service costs. 40% of all after sales calls are related to bad or missing instructions. SwipeGuide applies evidence-based instruction design templates and makes instruction available cross-channel (e.g. via QRC/NFC, image recognition & integrated in apps & websites).

Can you describe a typical workday of you?
There is no one typical workday for me. I spend 2 days in our Amsterdam Headquarters per week. These days are mainly about getting things done with the team there. Rest of the days I work remotely. Sometimes from home, sometimes from a co-working space or at client sites. For us tools like Slack & Zoom are critical for collaboration & communication 24*7. My time is 50% commercial and 50% focused on instruction vision & product development.

Where do you see yourself and your startup SwipeGuide in five years?
For a Startup it is hard to look five years ahead, but let’s give it a shot anyway. We aim to be the new industry standard for instructions & manuals. In five years, I hope we delight a lot customers and simplify tasks for their users and employees. I see myself in a role to continue innovation in the direction of augmented and mixed reality. I hope we remain to be the energetic and enthusiastic team we are today also when we grow. And I like to operate Globally, but we’re starting that already.

What 3 tips would you give other Start-up founders on the way?
1. Build a kick-ass team: from the moment I found a great co-founder we focused on building a great team for Startup. Currently we have 8 people in Amsterdam working together with 4 remote workers. All great people that all have a specific contribution to the success of SwipeGuide.

2. Find your focus: in the beginning, we were too broad in our approach to the market. It is hard to build a product suitable for many sectors. When we found our focus the product roadmap became clear and sales & marketing much more focused.

3. Co-create with customers: start selling immediately. We landed our first customer based upon a clickable demo of 5 screen designs. From that point on you can start developing the product in co-creation with customers. Learn about their challenges and demands and make sure your product is fit for the tasks. This helps in setting priorities in development and the product roadmap.

More information you will find here

Thank you Daan Assen for the Interview

Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.

Sabine Elsässer

Sabine Elsässer is founder and chief editor of the StartupValleyNews Magazine. She started her career at several international direct sale companys. Since 2007 she works main time as a journalist. While that time she learned more about the Startup Scene, what made her start her own Startup Magazine the StartupValleyNews.

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