We’re very happy to share that 451 Research, a division of S&P Global Market Intelligence, recently initiated coverage of Wripple’s Agency Services Platform. Conner Frost from 451 Research writes “Wripple has a unique differentiation in helping customers build a foundation for more elastic employment and workforce management that can continue to be built on.” Read the full report below to learn how Wripple is changing the game.
CoverageInitiation: Wripple offers dynamic talent marketplace for hiring agile marketing teams
Analyst- Conner Forrest
Publication date: Friday, September 25, 2020
Wripple was founded by ex-Razorfish executives to address a shift they saw in marketing budgets and project execution. In their experience, the world of marketing was moving away from big budgets and big projects to smaller budgets and more agile projects. As such, the founders believed there was a need for more dynamic team deployment in marketing and Wripple was born. Essentially, Wripple is a talent marketplace that allows teams of marketing freelancers or small agencies to sign up as 'collectives' on the platform and be hired as needed by clients based on their collective skills and experience. Individuals can sign up on the marketplace as well, but Wripple is focused on team-based deployments as a differentiator. Wripple currently has 13 customers under contract and 23 total customers have signed up for the next version of its platform due out in late September.
The 451 Take
One of the biggest challenges in project management at the organizational level and departmental level, according to 451 Research's Voice of the Enterprise data, is the effective management of people resources. Part of that effective management is efficient deployment of workers as needed, which the purported value proposition of Wripple seems to support. As COVID-19 forces more companies to freeze hiring and furlough employees, as we have already seen in our field data, we believe that dynamic team deployment and skills management will continue to be in demand, giving companies like Wripple an opportunity for growth. The company does need to get to a point where it can support deployment of internal and external marketing, while providing visibility into both, but it has a unique differentiation in helping customers build a foundation for more elastic employment and workforce management that can continue to be built on.
Wripple was founded in October 2018 and started booking business in January 2019. The company provides access to freelance marketing and experience talent, most being ex-agency talent, for a lower price by eliminating some costs with the use of its platform. Wripple has headquarters in Atlanta and primarily targets North American customers. There are six full-time employees and the company uses its own platform to hire freelance teams and contractors as well.
The Wripple platform supports more than 50 kinds of marketing and experience projects and hosts talent focused on digital marketing, strategy, software development and data, for example. Client organizations can choose to hire a pre-built team or build their own team with individual freelancers. Wripple's strength and differentiation is the team-hiring aspect.
When shopping for a team, clients use an e-commerce experience to rank and prioritize the teams they see. Clients will see the collective's industry experience, available skills and total experience. Clients can also drill down to see the collective's portfolio of projects. Because a collective is any group of people on the platform, small agencies can join the platform as a collective. For individual freelancers, clients input how many people they need and what skills, then shop a la carte for workers from a curated list. Wripple can get teams up and going in 3-5 days, so speed and cost are big value propositions. Clients are also offered scoping and consultative support for projects through Wripple's team of Agency Services Consultants, who are available via real-time chat, phone calls or virtual meetings.
To get on the platform as a freelancer or collective, users must first apply and then go through two rounds of interviews. Once approved, freelancers can sign up as a collective and upload team case studies, which will be vetted by Wripple with client references. Wripple also performs background checks and can tailor them to a specific client need.
Wripple is in the process of integrating with some work management vendors like Wrike and Asana, which would add additional layers of project management support in the platform.There are no digital asset management (DAM) or product information management (PIM) software vendor integrations yet, but we believe that presents a unique opportunity given their heavy use in the marketing world.
For platform evolution, the first step is to blend the deployment of flex workers and full-time employees within marketing. The goal is to eventually work across internal and external employees. Wripple isn't writing off other functions in the future but is squarely focused on marketing and experience work for now.
Customer-wise, Wripple targets upper mid-market and enterprise firms. If a company has an in-house marketing agency, then Wripple has a better chance of being a good fit because in-house agencies often seek on-demand talent for seasonal bursts, outside thinking and to address gaps in expertise. Wripple is typically targeting clients that spend at least $5-10m on marketing a year. The CMO is usually involved in the buying discussion but the core user within the client organizations tends to be a director of marketing. On the sales side it's often a consensus buy with the VP of marketing being the top buyer persona.Clients and talent use Wripple for free. Wripple makes money on a take rate; it marks up the cost of the work of the talent and takes a cut of the completed work. Clients must sign a primary services agreement with a non-circumvent clause so they can't access the talent directly for at least 18 months. Clients can sign up any number of users with a license.All projects have a base cost and will go up as the client answers prompted scoping questions on the platform and inputs their needs.
Wripple is a privately held company and doesn't publicly disclose its financials. Based on our analysis, however, 451 Research estimates Wripple's annual revenue to be in the range of $600,000-$3m. So far, the company is entirely boot strapped, meaning Wripple's founders have self-funded the company without the assistance of outside investment.
Because Wripple focuses on agile hiring of marketing in a talent marketplace framework, it could be competitive with Credo and Fiverr for companies looking to fill those kinds of roles. For projects adjacent to, in addition to or outside of that, remit vendors like Upwork and Catalant could also be competitive. One of the biggest challenges Wripple and its competitors likely face is market awareness for talent marketplaces, especially as more traditional firms begin to examine alternative hiring and employment tools following hiring freezes brought on by COVID-19.