Validas says they can do: "lower your wireless cell phone bill". You can cut your landline bills by using Skype, but don't you just love figuring out all the ways your cell phone company manages to increase your bill?Start-ups should have a simple value proposition that is easy to understand. In a recession, that proposition should be "we save you money, NOW". Or maybe, a tad harder, "we bring you new revenue, NOW". With the emphasis on urgency. You can always save money by making sacrifices. But if you can save money by simply reducing a bill, without reducing the service, who would not do that? That is what
This Is For Small Medium Business
Validas is ideal for the SMB (Small Medium Business) market. That includes all the bootstrapping Gritty Entrepreneurs as well as the VC funded start-ups that just got the "cut costs" memo from their pals at the VC fund. But it is also the 27 million Small Medium Businesses that employ 50% of Americans.
Validas can be used by a consumer. But an individual can probably spend a few minutes and figure it out themselves.
Nor is Validas ideal for Fortune 500. They can get the data from the carriers in a form that they can analyze any way they want, they can employ people to haggle with the carriers and have the clout to get results.
What if you are the CEO with 20 employees? You have other priorities. You can tell your Admin/Finance person to do it, but maybe his priority should be chasing receivables? You can tell all 20 of your people to figure out how to reduce all their cell phone bills? Well, if you are the kind of CEO that sprays employees with constant priorities that all get ignored, you could employ consultants to do it, but their fees might outweigh the savings.
Automating A Small Boring Job
Validas does what you would do if you took the trouble or if you employed somebody to do it. They just automate it, so they can do it fast and efficiently and thus make money in the process.
This is boring and it is small. So it should be really easy. It should fit into that quadrant that is Minor Impact/Easy To Do.
That is easy to say, but hard to pull off. Validas has the experience to deliver this. The founders, Tom Pepe and Todd Dunphy, left their safe jobs at Verizon Wireless to start Validas. They know all the tricks that carriers use to get those extra fees.
How It Works
To use Validas, you will need to be set up for online billing. Online billing is free from your carrier and you do not need to cancel your paper bill to use Validas. You can use Validas for bills from: AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile, and US Cellular.
Then you upload to Validas and view your potential savings. You can download this information into Excel or print out the reports.
Validas claims that the Current Average Yearly Savings Per Customer = $505. Presumably that is not per user and is for a small business of some type.
Validas pricing is simple, with various plans. The one they promote as best value costs $24 for 24 reports, audited every month. So that would work for a 24 person company. You can test it out with a $5 One Time Audit.
Validas fits the trend we are seeing of a return to simple "every day low prices" rather than fancy Freemium models supported by advertising. If it has value, charge for it.
The End Of Information Asymmetry
Validas looks like it is part of a big trend towards transparency, the end of "information asymmetry" that we noted in our Ten Trends To Bet On For Your Most Audacious Start-Up. We have seen start-ups doing this well in the car market. We suspect we will see more in financial services. In all cases, the start-up takes the side of the small buyer to get better deals from a large seller. Validas is a welcome entrant in the cell phone market.