It's a favourite among the tech circles, but Evernote could be about to hit the mainstream, thanks to a huge new partnership announced at LeWeb '11 today. Proving the success of young startups, CEO of Evernote Phil Libin, met with Paul Francois-Fournier from Orange a year ago and Orange were suitably impressed with the product. They decided they needed to offer it to their customers and partnered up with Libin.
By Spring 2012, all Orange customers in France will get access to Evernote premium for a year. Orange want to provide the best services to their customers and Evernote is one way for them to do this. It's a huge win for Evernote and provides inspiration for other tech startups and the possibility to reach the critical mass.
Relying On Their Users
Evernote's success is not just a fluke and it's another example of taking the time to do things slowly. Outside of Evernote's partnership with Orange, they also made Inc. Company of the Year and benefit from 20 million users having just started in Summer 2008. It is through believing in the service and the power of its users that they have seen their way to success. Phil explained that they usually see a huge dropoff in users that have signed up for a month.
This is usual for most new sites or apps as the initial peak of interest is rarely sustained. But with Evernote, they found that after 1-3 months, they saw renewed uptake, as people became dependent on the site. And the money is following their users. 20 per cent of their oldest customers are paying for the premium version of the site, which equates to around 750,000 users.
Evernote first reached profitability six months ago and following this raised a further $50 million in investment. They have spotted their opportunity and the need to act fast and have rapidly hired off the back of this, which has seen them hit the red again, though Phil is confident this is short-term due to the rapid hiring. The investment has also allowed them to diversify out into different products.
Two New Apps
Evernote have recently launched two new products - Evernote Food & Evernote Hello. With Evernote Food, you take pictures of what you've eaten and and share notes on Facebook Twitter. They claim however that they are not about competing with Foodspotting or other similar products. Phil explained that Evernote is really for you - so the sharing is only there if you want to do so. It's more about your memories and your experience. It will then show you your related notes from Evernote, for example matching up a dinner meeting with the photo you took of the food there.
Evernote Hello is a way of keeping records of the people you meet, also showing up your related notes and related people. For example, if you have a record of a meeting, it will bring up that contact within Evernote. bringing up animated pictures. It's also designed to help you to remember people you meet.
Evernote is an impressive success story, about to open up their first European office in Zurich and the announcement with Orange is an important step in their development.