Last week Forrester, the well-known research and analysis company, launched Tap, a new app centered around customer feedback on companies, brands and products. People leave short, Twitter-style posts with positive or negative comments or questions and the companies can respond appropriately.
There’s no lack of outlets for the average mobile user to share their commentary on a brand or product both with that brand and with the general public. A recent Sprout Social report showed 56% of Millennials and 39% of other demographics have “called out” a brand on social media, which is the second most popular channel for consumer complaints. They’re doing so to warn others and have their problems resolved.
So it’s not necessarily that Forrester is offering the public something unique by giving them a place to post their opinions and feedback. Instead the value proposition is that it’s an environment where brands will have a dedicated presence and respond to that feedback.
That’s different than the corporate inconsistent efforts deployed on Twitter and Facebook, where the volume of responses and attitudes of those posting their comments can get overwhelming and hard to manage very quickly.
The real value in the app is what could be realized by both Forrester and the companies participating in those conversations.
Forrester is in the survey and analysis business. Their reports on industry trends are legendary and highly sought after, which is why they’re usually incredibly expensive. Tap would provide a treasure trove of new data to slice and dice and use in future reports and forecasts. It would be able to analyze the comments being left and look for insights both on the individual company and industry level.
All of those insights can then be packaged and sold to its corporate customers. Those companies would be able to see volume, tone and more, all of which could be used to allocate resources and efforts in the future.
All of that is well and good, but there’s a significant roadblock to realizing this value: Adoption. There has to be some reason for consumers to download and begin using the app beyond the idea of providing feedback to companies. Basically, what’s in it for them? Why should they use that app instead of Twitter, Facebook proper, much less the chat bots on Facebook Messenger and other platforms that are becoming more popular for customer service purposes? Is there something unique being offered?
That will likely be up to the individual company to decide. Perhaps it’s a coupon in exchange for leaving a comment or something like that. Whatever the case, it will fall on those companies to promote the app and encourage adoption, identifying a specific and unique reason for the consumer to do so. Otherwise this will be a sparsely-populated community uncovering insights of limited usefulness.
Chris Thilk is a freelance writer and content strategist who lives in the Chicago suburbs.