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CRM software provider looking to double revenue and expand international presence after Boost support

Euan Aitken Zigaflow

A Burnley-based specialist in business automation and client relationship management (CRM) software has sights on global growth after receiving business coaching through Boost; Lancashire's Business Growth Hub.

Founded in 1999, Zigaflow began as a London-based software consultancy. It evolved to become a provider of CRM subscription software that offers a wide range of customisable business functions to a global client base. This expansion included opening an office in the North West.

With ambitious plans to grow the business further, the firm sought advice and support from Boost to reconfirm that its strategic plans were realistic and achievable. Euan Aitken was one of the first customers to subscribe to Zigaflow’s CRM software. He then joined the firm as chief operating officer in 2019. Euan contacted Boost after a conversation with Boost growth adviser Purves Ali.

“We have aspiring plans to grow the business, particularly our overseas market. It’s easy to think ‘I know what I’m doing’ but I felt the business would benefit from an outside perspective to give us further direction.” Boost is Lancashire's Business Growth Hub and is led by Lancashire County Council and the Lancashire LEP (Local Enterprise Partnership). It is supported by funding from Lancashire County Council, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

As a funded business support service, Boost helps Lancashire business owners and leaders navigate the local, regional and national public and private sector business support landscape, to find the right support for their business. Boost also delivers a number of funded programmes for start-up, established and fast-growing businesses. Euan joined Boost’s programme for fast-growing businesses in April 2022 and received professional coaching from experienced marketing and advertising specialist Paul Bury.

Through bi-weekly catch ups and working together over several months, Euan and Paul covered key objectives for the business, particularly looking at the firm’s goals, product placement and brand messaging. Euan said: “We knew where we wanted to be, but Paul’s professional coaching helped us to firstly gain a ‘sanity check’ on what we do. He had the skill to ask the right questions and at each catch up he would tease another nugget out of our heads. “Part of that was to gain clarity of our product placement.

Paul encouraged us to find a more simplified and commercial description of who we are and what we do.” Zigaflow’s clients are located both in the UK and worldwide. It works with ambitious businesses, often service-led or commercial retailers and distributors, as well as businesses in the IT sector. Through Paul’s professional coaching, Euan and the Zigaflow team reflected on its customers and potential customer base, and how to be clearer about their offering as a CRM software host. Euan said: “We were leaning away from defining ourselves as CRM – but Paul posed the question ‘what do your customers think you do?’ We realised it was important to get a better idea as to how we are perceived and why customers would seek our services.” What developed from Paul’s coaching was a clearer marketing message for Zigaflow. Positioned as a flexible and customisable CRM system, it could be tailored to match the unique requirements for most businesses.

Paul said: “When you have a client who is totally engaged with the process, open minded, enthusiastic and determined to leave ‘no stone unturned’ exceptional outcomes can be achieved. Euan was exactly that – as we worked on achieving clarity over the course of our time together. “In a sector which is dominated by a number of large worldwide brands, Zigaflow is a superior challenger and I am certain the business will continue to grow at an exciting rate over the next three years.” Since the Boost coaching, the firm has continued to see steady growth and now plans to double revenue in the next two to three years. Part of its growth plan is to build the team in areas of sales, marketing, and customer support.

Its international growth plan includes a push to do more global marketing and appointing representatives to manage customer care and support at a local level. The firm is also developing additional features and functionality for its system to provide greater support for users. Euan added: “At the end of the day our growth comes as a by-product of our customers’ growth. By making life easier for our customers, they succeed, and we benefit on the back of this. The professional coaching from Paul has greatly reinforced these strategic objectives.”

Would you like to see your business grow? So would we. To speak to someone from the Growth Hub about business support, contact Boost online or call 0800 488 0057.

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