Yes, an electric toothbrush is my favorite SaaS and product-led growth (PLG) product. I am as surprised as you are. I recently came across Oral-B’s new IO series toothbrush. The toothbrush is a “smart device” with an app. I’ve been using the device recently. Here are my observations.

  • Toothbrush pairs easily with an app. All you need to do is give your toothbrush a shake🪥.
  • There is onboarding that helps you choose goals🥅and set up different brushing modes.
  • You can pick different journeys🗺️ of tooth health ex: plaque fighter, fresh breath, etc. 
  • Each brushing session can be a guided session🦮. The app visualizes the coverage and provides feedback in real-time. 
Oral-B tooth brush with app
Oral-B toothbrush with app

Here are some problems this toothbrush solves that plague a traditional electric toothbrush:

  • The brush has a clear battery indicator🔋, enabling you to charge as needed and prevent any overcharging.
  • The app tracks brush bristle health by brushing time. Replacement of brush heads is now more predictable and objective⏰.
  • The guided session helps you understand brushing patterns and ensures complete coverage in a measured way📏.
Oral B app pictures
Oral B App with usage and battery Indicator

The SaaS and Product-led Growth (PLG) Principles

  • The brush and the app form a powerful combination creating an easy onboarding and a fantastic self-service experience💪.
  • The app has in-built viral loops of badges🏆, feedback, and journeys to motivate users to use the product regularly🎖️.
  • There is a hook to refill brush heads and enables regular reordering, equating this to a soft subscription pattern🔂.
  • There are intelligent cross-sell and upsells disguised as toothpaste and mouthwash recommendations↗️⬆️.
  • The toothbrush and app provide direct product usage data🎛️ to the brand. 
  • The app also integrates with the “health” app of your phone, positioning itself as a need and increasing overall awareness📣.

Conclusion

The toothbrush, once just a physical retail product, is forever transformed⚡. There is a direct connection between the product maker and the user, previously unheard of in the retail sector. The makers have cleverly incorporated subscription patterns, contextual upsell, cross-sell, and incentives for continuous product usage.

Oral-B IO series toothbrush is an example of a phenomenally superior product💥. It not only differentiates itself but also delivers a fantastic ✨end-user experience✨. The toothbrush and the app is the hero of this PLG, SaaS story and I am a fan!

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