Collabry Case Study

Originally named Flaca, Collabrys was founded in 1999, by Randy Korba and Jan Sherman during the Silicon Valley technology boom. Funded by venture capitalists Sam Colella and Rebecca Robertson at Versant Ventures, the company focused on personalized marketing which was the new great frontier at the time. The basic strategy was to transform the marketing process by allowing businesses to establish deep customer relationships through use of gathered information.   Collabrys used data mining processes to match customers needs with the product so their clients could market towards their customers with the right products. In 2000, the company's name was changed to Collabys (Collaborative Branding Research Systems) as the company started to develop a strong sense of identity. The company originally zeroed in on the process of developing the product instead of focusing on developing customer relations. Korba and Sherman believed they could leverage content and contact between brand and product. However,   focusing on product development as the heart and soul of the business does not generate sales because there is no customer demand. This is the cause of a majority of start up failures. As a start up company, Collabrys spent large quantities of money on marketing campaigns as well as the product itself. Collabrys was great at product development, but awful at managing customer development.


Because it failed to address it's customers problems, Collabrys did not have a repeatable sales model.   This unclear business model was one of the greatest problems facing Collabry's because it   created doubt in the minds of the investors. These investors did not understand the business plan. Collabry's had originally partnered with advertising agencies to sell solutions instead of just relying on direct sales. Collabrys failed to deal with its potential customers' chief issues, therefore customers did not see value in the product and were...