Q&A: Yoav Rimon, Co-Founder and CEO of Chat Leap

Yoav Rimon is Co-Founder and CEO of Chat Leap, a platform used by businesses and marketing professionals to build, deploy, and run bots and messaging solutions for multiple instant messaging apps (Messenger, Viber, Kik etc.). Their focus is on helping businesses to acquire, onboard and retain customers. Digital marketers and CRM managers who use their platform successfully improve their customer acquisition costs, lifetime value, and overall engagement with their users. This is all empowered by their unique technology which contains analytics, optimization algorithms, and integration of CRM and BI services.

This is all empowered by their unique technology which contains analytics, optimization algorithms, and integration of CRM and BI services.

We checked in with him to learn more about his business, his approach to digital marketing, and the state of the industry.

Tell me about your background. How did you get into the performance marketing/digital marketing space?

Even before my academic studies, I knew that I want to work in the internet space. It is a decentralized, messy jungle, and to someone unorganized like myself – it’s the only eco-system I can show any form of success. Early in my career, I worked at two early-stage start-ups, doing affiliate marketing and media buying. I was fascinated by how marketing technologies were set up so efficiently, and then joined Google where I spent 6 years. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity which taught me anything there is to know about digital marketing inside and out.

I filled several roles all surrounding performance marketing, from display, search and mobile app installs. Most importantly, it provided me with the skills that allowed me to start my own marketing technology company.

What does your day-to-day look like?

As a startup CEO, I can’t think of one day that resembles another. I talk and pitch to customers, hire and manage employees, iterate our product roadmap, run marketing campaigns, partnership deals, and doing all the boring paperwork a CEO has to do at this stage. One repetitive thing I somehow find myself always responsible for is ordering food to everyone.

What are your goals in your job and how do you approach meeting them?

What drives me forward is helping our customers achieve their results. My favorite part of work is seeing or hearing the response of our customers once they start using our product. We are a customer-centric business and we do everything in our power to help them succeed and be responsive to their asks.

What excites you most about the industry? What do think will be the next big thing?

What’s exciting is that the industry always sees changes and innovations every few months, and once every 5-10 years it experiences major paradigm shifts. The next big thing is an easy one for me, but I’m obviously biased – it’s marketing via instant messaging bots. The explanation is fairly simple: Marketers want to be where their customers are. And people spend their time inside messaging apps more than anywhere else. In the past 18 months, all messaging apps (except Whatsapp) have opened their API’s to allow the development of bots that can reach any user, at an automated and endless scale.

I really can’t think of a performance-driven company that will not leverage this channel to market and sell its products using bots on instant messaging.

In addition to many advantages this medium has, the one that really stands out is that unlike content, email, push, SMS, social or ads – this one offers a continuous dialog between businesses and consumers. It means that users always have an open thread to go back to, and there will always be someone on the other side to reply immediately. It really is the biggest thing to happen in my 10+ years doing online marketing.

What do you find most challenging as a performance marketer? How do you approach these challenges?

Performance marketing technologies lack the ability to track and evaluate sentiments and emotions, which is what drives human connections. Impression, click, conversion – none of these measures what people really feel towards your product. Which is why I know Instant Messaging marketing is different than any other form of marketing.

In our platform, for example, we analyze every conversation and extract any type of sentiment of each interaction. We then show a breakdown analysis of when users express appreciation, disappointment, gratitude, and many other attributes.

Never in the history of marketing were businesses able to track every single engagement and view it in any resolution, aggregated or at user-level. So it’s not just a killer marketing channel, it also provides invaluable market intelligence you couldn’t have collected elsewhere.

How do you define “performance marketing”? Do see performance marketing as different than “digital marketing?” How do you think your role is perceived in the larger marketing industry?

I think that digital is what spawned the term “performance” in relation to marketing because it was the first time where marketers felt like they can measure the true value of their strategies. But even brand marketing is now performance-based, the difference being with the KPI’s that are set more towards upper funnel actions.

In other words, everyone is doing performance marketing. I can’t be the judge of what my role is perceived like, but one thing I do for sure is educating the market.

Reminds me of how Outbrain began educating the market on content marketing 10 years ago – we’re pretty much at the same stage now with marketing with bots via instant messaging.

Tell me one surprising thing about yourself. Additionally, if there’s anything new and interesting you recently discovered, please tell us about that too!

I was a lead singer and guitarist in a rock band. We never officially broke up, so who knows, we might return someday.

Thanks for your time!

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