Armen’s Game of Chess

We sat down with Armen Allahverdian, the VP of Marketing for ChartSpan, a patient healthcare platform that allows its users to manage their healthcare records on their iPhone/iPad and Android devices for free.

Armen is currently a Greenville native, but is originally from Texas. He’s been here for about a year and half and has been with ChartSpan since the begininng. Armen has been in the marketing and sales arena for over 13 years now. Over the last 3 years he has transitioned his marketing skills from the tennis industry into the fast pace growing world of healthcare technology.

What keeps you up at night?

The stress associated with my work is what keeps me up at night at times. I am usually good at planning out my days and weeks to tackle the projects that lie in front of me. However the world of technology and mobile marketing is constantly changing which requires me to always be on my toes. So in a nutshell the nights that I can’t sleep are because of all the exciting things happening with our company. Good stress – right?!

What gets you up every morning?

I love being active – so I’m always pumped about getting up, going to Swamp Rabbit CrossFit, and getting my workout in. After that, I’m energized and ready to hit the ground running full force and excited to go to work. I really love what I do and I strongly believe in what we are building to empower the patient to get full access to their healthcare records at anytime.

So the same thing that keeps me up at night is what gets me up in the morning.

How did you get involved with ChartSpan?

I was in the tennis industry for 13 years – I helped grow one of the largest online tennis retailer in the country called TennisExpress. After that I worked for a few years out in the field for one of the top tennis brands: Prince Tennis. However the tennis industry wasn’t cutting it for me. The industry was getting smaller and I wanted to get back into the start-up world.

ChartSpan started with two brothers, Jon-Michial Carter and Patrick Carter. Patrick was an ER physician assistant. He came up with the idea of creating an app that allows you to have access to your health records and took it to his brother Jon-Michial which just had a successful exit from his previous company. I knew Jon-Michial through his wife. I actually met Jon-Michial at a driving range one day in Houston.

The idea of ChartSpan was so good and so promising with the vision the two brothers had that there was no way I could pass this opportunity. So I took on the challenge and worked evenings and weekends without taking a paycheck to make ChartSpan a reality. Now we’ve gone from four of us to 15 total employees at an awesome office on main street in downtown Greenville.

In the last three years I’ve probably worked the hardest and the longest hours I’ve ever had – but at the same time I’ve had the most fun ever. It almost doesn’t feel like I am going to work everyday.

How hard is it to market an app?

App marketing is one of the hardest things I have ever done. The space is so crowded and every day is like a game of chess. The world of mobile marketing is constantly changing and new tools are always emerging that let you track your marketing efforts. However, these tools are in their early stages, but boy are they moving fast and getting better quick!

The majority of my time is figuring out how to advertise and where to advertise on mobile. It’s probably the busiest place in the marketing world right now. Even if you are not an app – you are advertising on mobile devices. I was reading an article the other day that people between the ages of 25-34 spend on average 75-80 hours per month on their phone. And that people between the ages of 35-45 spend on average 60 hours per month on their mobile devices. What this means is that our world is going mobile, therefore the majority of companies are starting to change their marketing focus towards the mobile world.

How does your marketing strategy shift from day to day?

My main focus is acquiring new users and new downloads. Of course there are other things that need to be done like maintaining the website, user testing on new features that the development team creates, and collaborating with Katie, our Director of Consumer Engagement in how to communicate with our existing users.

As I said earlier my world is like a game of chess. I think if I play chess again I’ll be a much better player after all the bad and good moves I’ve made at my current role.

My marketing goal never changes but the strategies do change from time to time. We’re an agile company and make changes very quickly. I am working on becoming a better analytics person as well. Everything needs to be measured, and if a strategy fails, I quickly learn from it and find ways to improve. If it was a total bust I put it aside and move on to the next strategy.

“What new products is ChartSpan coming out with?”

ChartSpan has built a product for providers. Most healthcare providers by law have to give their patients access to their healthcare records electronically using EHR (Electronic Health Records). They must meet a minimum requirement by Meaningful Use Stage 2 to not be penalized. The problem is that doctors don’t have time to treat patients while at the same time, get involved with the marketing required to drive their patients to log into not so user-friendly portals to access their healthcare records. We saw an opportunity and created a product called ChartSpan Engage, which is an EaaS (Engagement-as-a-Service) product for healthcare providers.

Find out more about ChartSpan and what Armen the rest of the team are up to at