close

Tell us who to send Biz Wiz to

* indicates required

Spokane Journal of Business spotlight

spokane-journal-of-business.jpg

The Spokane Journal of Business did a nice write up on ezIQ.

Original article from 10/6/16 follows - 

In the past six months, Spokane-based software company ezIQ, a subsidiary of Effortless IQ LLC, says it has gained subscribers and completed the third version of its main product. 

EzIQ’s main product, also called ezIQ, is a customer relationship management tool, designed to help business clients organize processes and keep in touch with clients. This past April, the company began offering the software free of charge to the majority of its customers. 

Company owner and founder Chad Cleveland says ezIQ tracks its growth by both the number of users actively using the software and the number of paying users.

“We have grown from 24 to 87 paying users in the past six months,” he says. “We currently have 154 active users, and 87 paying users. We expect to be at over 650 paying users by the end of 2017, and over 3,000 by the end of 2018.”

Cleveland says he got the idea for ezIQ after having used similar software to develop a sales database for a local insurance agency. 

“We received such good feedback that we soon realized there was a need for this kind of tool, as well as people willing to purchase it,” he says.

Cleveland says ezIQ itself is still a small company, with only three other employees besides him. As its products are all available online, the business has no need for a storefront, but does share some office and meeting space with Farmers Insurance at 1008 N Washington.

He describes ezIQ as an online system designed to help entrepreneurs, referral marketers, sales professionals, and small business teams to stay in touch with contacts, track referrals, and manage processes.

“What this does is systemize the business, creating simple processes and managing contacts,” he says. “Once those things are taken care of, it enables the user to spend more time on other aspects of their business.”

While ezIQ is the company’s main online application, accounting for 95 percent of its business, it also offers two other industry specific software tools, ezB2B and ezAG. 

“The ezB2B software focuses more on referral tracking, and ezAG is a quoting tool designed for the agriculture industry,” says Cleveland. “We also offer a free online resource called BizWiz.co, which is a kind of blog that lists things like business advice, sales tips, and other helpful tools or software for entrepreneurs.” 

He says one thing that sets ezIQ apart from other such software applications is that it was designed by salespeople. 

 “It wasn’t designed by a computer programmer trying to understand the perspective of a salesperson, but rather by a successful salesperson anticipating the needs of that viewpoint,” he says. “Therefore it’s a very easy and intuitive tool for salespeople to catch onto and incorporate.” 

The company’s website lists a free version of ezIQ software, as well as in an extended edition package for $49 a month.

Cleveland says there is no limit on the use of the free version, because he wants to be able to help new businesses begin to grow.

“I wanted to be able to offer this tool for free, so a business could access it up until the point when their business is really able to start providing,” he says. “It’s a substantial benefit, whether the individual is working for a company selling their products, or out on their own and trying to build independence.” 

Born and raised in Spokane Valley, Cleveland graduated from Washington State University in 2006 with a degree in agronomy. He then enjoyed a five-year career managing golf clubs and resorts across the U.S. before moving back to the area in 2011.

He says he started ezIQ in March 2013 with an initial investment of $12,000, working with a contracted developer to create the software, but by November had taken over development himself. In 2015, he invested another $20,000, and the company gained its first paying customer. 

Since that time, the company has been testing the programs, getting feedback, and creating updates. Last month it released ezIQ 3.0, the latest version of the software, which features updated security and a business card scanner. 

“During this period we have been spending a great deal of time on building processes around sign-up, support, and training, and we’ve been building our knowledge base, so our focus has not been 100 percent on selling subscriptions,” he says.  “We have just a few loose ends to tie up. Then we’re going to make a big sales and advertising push.”

Cleveland says some of the types of clients that find the ezIQ software useful include real estate companies, small manufacturers, outbound sales companies, marketing businesses, mortgage lenders, financial advisers, and insurance brokerages. 

“For a lot of these industries, following up is important,” he says. “When you have new products or new customers, you go through certain steps. This software helps to organize and manage those steps, in addition to being able to track everyday tasks like meetings or email communications.” 

Looking ahead, Cleveland says ezIQ might create a private label version of the software, which he says could be rebranded to become the product of any interested parent company. 

“We’re still talking it over, and have a few companies that might be interested,” says Cleveland.“