Heylo Manages Membership Money with Brevo

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Heylo offers a management platform for people with similar interests, such as runners or tennis enthusiasts, that transforms in-person groups into thriving, self-sustaining member communities. With the platform, groups can maintain member profiles, organize events, share communications, track event attendance, and more, all wrapped up in one branded space.

“Big group chats or social media posts don’t unite members like they’re supposed to,” explains Eric Winters, cofounder and CEO of the San Francisco-based entity.

Heylo grew quickly in the first couple of years with the support of technology from Brevo, a provider of unified customer information, marketing, and sales platforms. But there was a lot more that Heylo’s group clients wanted that the company couldn’t deliver.

A handful of groups that Heylo supported had already collected membership payments via other platforms like Venmo, Zelle, and PayPal, but “it was frustrating for them because they were managing everything with spreadsheets and they had to track all of the payments themselves,” Winters says.

Add to that the administration issues, and it was enough to make whoever was tasked with payments “just throw their arms up,” Winters says.

“We could support the coach of a track club bringing people together around running,” Winters explains. “That coach may want to offer a paid membership or paid events. We had been supporting that club purely through organization and communications. Adding the payments platform enables the coach to collect money and have a livelihood around his passion.”

Heylo in early 2023 began looking for a vendor that could offer additional CRM, communications, and payments tools, and again settled on Brevo.

It made more sense to go with the Brevo CRM tool than to try to integrate a separate CRM solution, Winters says. “It was easy for us to add it because we were already using the Brevo transactional email tool and the Brevo system was already helping us create contacts. It was easy for us to add the fields that we wanted to track.”

The complete Brevo CRM tool helps support payments and introduces that feature to new club/association members.

Heylo’s main platform offering is free; the company now makes money by taking a percentage of the fees it collects for its member organizations. The payments portion of its business has grown in the past year from a few thousand dollars to more than $1.5 million.

And with this new capability, other technology needs followed.

“All of a sudden we needed a CRM to help make our customers aware of this new functionality and increase our business revenue,” Winters says.

The newsletter and CRM-based communications also help keep members engaged with their clubs/associations, according to Winters, who credits the two additional tools with expanding its base of communities and groups and strongly contributing to Heylo’s 20 percent growth over the past year.

In that time, Heylo has proven that the CRM and newsletter tools from Brevo work, Winters says. “Now we want to scale them. Our mission as a company is to help everyone belong to an amazing community, whether it’s track or reading or anything in between.

With Brevo, Heylo has increased its newsletter base to more than 8,000 customers, and further growth is on the horizon.

“For us to do that, we need to support more groups and more communities. With Brevo, we will be able to scale. We will be able increase the communities and groups that we support, which is now in the thousands, to tens of thousands.” 

The Payoff 

Since adding the Brevo CRM and newsletter tools, Heylo has seen the following results:

  • the newsletter base has grown to more than 8,000 customers;
  • its customer base of communities and groups continues to increase, with the newsletter contributing nearly 20 percent of the growth; and
  • the payments portion of its business has grown from a few thousand dollars to more than $1.5 million.

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