We talk a lot about e-commerce in Brazil, but when it comes to social commerce, it’s a rare conversation. Bloompa is looking to change that and cultivate the social sector of the online buying world.
Bloompa was founded by Thiago Nascimento and Ricardo Dantas, who came together as part of a mutual interest in the social commerce concept. Though today the idea is quite commonplace in the digital marketing sector today, it is important to remember that it is relatively new. The two embarked on a blog about the subject, the Social Commerce Blog. Through the platform, they learned about the subject and carried out validation and other tests with their readers.
Eventually, Nascimento and Dantas set out to create a business based on social commerce. They pitched their idea to 21212 Digital Accelerator and were selected by the organization to refine their product and make it grow.
Bloompa has released two products to date – Bloomp Commerce and Share’n Buy. The company currently has a third element in the works, a social retarget solution for e-commerce stores that need to improve their segmentation efforts with their campaigns, e-mail marketing efforts and display ads.
A total of 40,000 users have installed the Bloompa apps thus far, and that number is growing each and every day. The company has agreements with 13 e-commerce stores and is responsible for roughly 3,000 purchases per month.
Co-founder of Bloompa Thiago Nascimento told us about the company as well as the prospects of social commerce in Brazil.
Emily Stewart: E-commerce has proven a very successful model in Brazil. How has that translated into social commerce? How does the approach differ?
Thiago Nascimento: The Brazilian e-commerce market is becoming more consolidated and structured day by day, and the players involved are working hard to improve the whole e-commerce chain, which has some problems in Brazil.
Social commerce has many challenges here, such as consolidating strategy. A few segments have proven successful, like group buying, but others, like us, have no other players to compare with our business. We run into trouble with the sales process and validating the business model. The innovative companies in this segment must have some awesome numbers regarding solutions and big ROI to convince the e-commerce stores that social commerce strategy is a good way to keep in touch with customers, improve social branding and encourage word of mouth.
ES: How has the increase in mobile devices affected your business? Is it an area you’re looking to explore?
TN: Mobile services and solutions are growing fast in Brazil, but infrastructure and the government aren’t helping it to grow fast enough. Everybody has problems with 3G signals, for example. We’re looking forward to developing apps to track and improve the social experience in e-commerce sites with respect to mobile users. It is in our plans for next year, which we believe will be the year of mobile solutions in Brazil.
ES: You worked with accelerator 21212. What was the experience like? What did you get out of it?
TN: The experience was awesome. We met a lot of great people, friends, customers and partners at 21212. We worked hard throughout the acceleration process to validate and discover the gaps in our business model. We also learned a lot about how to introduce our solution in a better way, and the best thing was the networking opportunity available.
We came in with a lot of doubts about market problems, and in the program, we learned a lot of techniques to understand the whole process and identify opportunities to create a great company. At the end of acceleration, we left with an awesome product and positive results with our beta version, which made a huge difference for us.
ES: Who are your local and global competitors? What makes you stand apart?
TN: We have one competitor in terms of our our macro strategy, which is RadiumOne, and some others with the Bloompa Commerce product, such as ShopSocially, 8thBridge and CureBit. As you can see, we have no competitors in Brazil.
Our biggest differentiator is that we work with all the data surrounding social consumer behavior, tracking profile navigation, social interactions, influence, engagement, interests and social networks to cross everything. We give that knowledge to e-commerce stores so that they are better able to recognize the best customers and evangelize accordingly. We help them to foster a high level of segmentation in their campaigns, which need to reach the customers with potential. They don’t waste money on uninterested consumers.
Bloompa is currently in the process of validating its solutions in the Brazilian e-commerce market, leveraging its own expertise along with the growth of the national market. Though options in the United States and Latin America are being explored, nothing concrete has been laid out just yet.