A need for an easy-to-use, affordable, yet efficient platform for managing client requests and communication is what prompted Kyle Courtright to launch his exciting new brand design company with Zendo.
Etch Design is a reimagined design agency, offering its clients subscription-based access to unlimited design requests carried out by its tight-knit, talented creative team.
Etch had its soft launch in 2022, but don’t be taken aback by its startup status. Kyle Courtright, the Founder of Etch, has 14+ years of experience in the design field, working with growth driven startups, to Fortune 500 brands like Toyota, PayPal, NVIDIA, Chipotle and Walmart.
As Kyle says, he serves clients with excellence through:
- high quality design,
- speedy turnarounds,
- and refreshing reliability.
To ensure top 1% design quality is delivered, Etch stands out from the crowd by (very intentionally) limiting the amount of clients they decide to take on.
Managing multiple design requests at once without a centralized hub for communication and collecting those requests seems like a quick recipe for a disaster.
And Kyle knew this.
Back in the initial stages of launching Etch, he was in search of a comprehensive remedy to carry out client design requests while promoting effective, efficient communication. Since Etch offers a reliable service, they needed a buttoned up communication system that aligned with that type of reliability.
But efficient communication and systemized request management were not the only qualities Kyle was looking for. Etch also needed a platform that was customizable and reasonably priced.
“From the onset, having one centralized channel of communication where nothing gets lost in the shuffle? Now that’s powerful stuff. You marry that with an effective and minimalist communication function, and it makes Zendo quite the game changer for our brand.”
— Kyle Courtright
The Solution: Zendo
To picture how Zendo’s chat works, think of Slack, Facebook’s Messenger, or any other chat-based app — then pare it down to the essentials.
With tailor-made statuses, custom fields, triggers, payment requests, private team notes, combined with the loved and known mentions and emojis, we’ve worked hard to bring value.
Because of all those extra features, it’s perfect for client communication.
But delivering top-notch quality of service is a team effort. Etch’s clients are given a dedicated Project Manager and Creative Director, who in turn, manage a tight-knit group of ~5-6 senior level designers carrying out client design requests.
That’s why a sweet cherry on top of Zendo’s real-time chat is the option for the Etch team to chat privately within each request.
Collecting & Managing Requests
Etch offers an unlimited design subscription and ultimately needs to gather their client’s requests in the most efficient way possible.
And Zendo does just that.
Whether we’re talking about requests that are a part of an unlimited subscription, requests for a one-off productized service, or otherwise — Zendo gathers your clients’ requests for easy management.
For optimal efficiency and improving CX, Etch set up a stand-alone page with a custom intake form their clients fill out when making design requests.
On the left of the page, Etch added their custom image and an introduction combined with instructions for submitting a request. On the right side, there’s the custom intake form Etch created to collect requests from their clients.
The intake forms in Zendo can be made out of multiple fields, including file uploads, dividers, headings, single or multiple choice fields, and more, with custom names and help text. All of which is easily arranged with a drag & drop system.
After a client fills out the intake form and submits their request, the request lands in the form of a new conversation thread.
Collected requests can then be managed further.
With table, list, and kanban views, it’s up to the Etch team to decide how they want to sort and view incoming design requests. On top of that, powerful filters and the option to save favorite view settings help Etch enjoy a comprehensive hub for managing client requests.
Statuses, Triggers & Workflows
We all know that keeping our clients well-informed during the process of delivering any type of service is absolutely critical.
And the way Etch keeps their clients informed (besides simply chatting with them) is using statuses, triggers, and workflows.
Zendo’s statuses come with customizable names, icons, and colors. It’s what Etch uses for indicating the current status of each request for their clients. Instead of yet another email they’d have to normally send, they simply switch the status in the conversation thread of a design request.
But, statuses can also be changed automatically thanks to triggers.
There are a few rules where Etch can set their triggers up. For example, when a request is completed or created.
Triggers are set in Zendo’s workflows that allow clients like Etch to systemize processes for delivering services and completing requests. A different workflow with unique statuses, triggers, custom fields, and automatic initial messages can be set for different request types. For example, logo identity design or presentation deck design could have two completely different delivery processes.
Roles & Permissions
Another big feature that proved to be essential for Etch is roles & permissions.
Etch can easily assign different roles to each team member, as well as limit or extend their permissions.
From Agents to Managers, Admins, and Owners, Zendo allows teams to give just the right set of capabilities.
And that’s how Agents can only have access to requests they have been assigned to, whereas Managers Admins, and Owners can use their permissions to manage incoming requests, as well as assign work to others.
White Label Platform
All the functionalities and features Etch uses would be nothing more than an intermediary between their agency and their clients if not for Zendo’s white label framework.
Besides basic white labeling, such as adding their own logo or changing the accent color of the workspace they share with clients, Etch can make use of advanced white label features, such as:
- connecting a custom domain,
- customizing the sign-up and log in pages for clients,
- removing the ‘Powered by Zendo’ badge,
- customizing the Zendo’s chatbot for automatic messages,
- adding a custom help center URL,
- adding a custom ToS URL,
- and more.
Last, but not least, the affordability factor.
Etch was looking for a comprehensive, yet minimal tool to integrate with their creative company, while staying reasonably affordable.
And Zendo checks that box.
With a free forever Starter plan and a $19 per user, per month (billed annually) Growth plan, Zendo stays as one of the most affordable solutions on the market.
Launching their business with Zendo, Etch got exactly what they were looking for:
- a minimalist & modern UI/UX combined with versatile customization options,
- a tool that’s easy to use and implement,
- one centralized channel of communication,
- a hub for collecting & managing requests,
- a tool for proper team collaboration & communication,
- and a reasonably priced solution.
Etch implemented Zendo from the get-go, which helped them manage their client’s design requests seamlessly.
Kyle, the Founder, underlines how easy the implementation was:
“I’ve felt supported and heard from the Zendo team all along the way. It’s apparent that they truly care about serving their customers well. During these Etch demo calls, we get to the backend (white labeled Zendo) near the end of the call and eyes get even wider. It’s a true value-add for folks.”
And since implementation, Etch has had an increasing number of reserved slots, where a waitlist will become inevitable.