Welcome to the #IIEX Europe Conference Series 2019. Recorded live in Amsterdam, this series is bringing interviews straight to you from exhibitors and speakers at this year’s event. In this interview, host Jamin Brazil interviews Jan van Puyvelde, Sales Director EMEA and APAC at discuss.io.
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My guest is Jan with Discuss.io. What is your title at Discuss.io?
I am actually Sales Director for EMEA and APAC, so everything except the US.
We are here live today at IIeX in Amsterdam. How many times have you been to the show?
This the third time in a row. We are attending because many brands attend. It is a nice blend between agencies, brands and startup companies. For me as a sales director, obviously, I needed to start the sales from scratch with Discuss.io three years ago. This was the perfect opportunity to have the opportunity to talk with different global brands at the same time, and to ramp up the collaboration in a more strategic way. That’s why we are attending.
Third year, you guys have a booth. What do you think about the new booths?
Yes. It is slightly different, but I think that definitely, the booth we have today is much better than a table.
I agree I like it a lot more than the…
Exactly. It’s more convenient to talk because you can stand, or you can sit so it’s easy to talk for people.
I was really reluctant because I had not seen one before. I am so glad with it versus the traditional tables you see along the outskirts. I feel it is far superior for having a conversation.
Correct, I agree.
In your close quarters what makes it feel busier? Even if I am standing by myself, I don’t feel like I am by myself. As opposed to normally, at a table, there is this vast expanse of nobody.
Exactly, (laughs) I agree.
Discuss.io, you guys have had a tremendous amount of success since founding the business, right?
Talk to us a little about what you guys are doing right now.
Right now, actually we’re online do-it-yourself Qual research platforms. We give the ability to connect with consumers in real time online. The major takeaway is actually that its time and cost-effective. This means that you can get respondents faster in front of you, in real time anywhere in the world and in a more cost-effective way. It’s just a matter of a couple hundreds of dollars, instead of spending thousands of dollars. That’s really the bottom line of the tool. It’s actually made for everyone. Incite people really like that its cost and time-saving. Marketing people really like it because it can have the ability to connect online with consumers, and pop that extra question and take it into feedback and product as they go. The product is evaluating constantly right. We have some new features in our product, but right now we see that more and more large brands are onboarding our solution. They really feel, and see, and experience the added value. That is the reason why they start rolling it out in more strategic ways of using it as a strategy rather than another methodology. That is what we are seeing happening now. With all the big brands, like the FMCG brands and other verticals right now.
You guys have tremendous scale, right?
Thinking about your early days, Unilever, I think, in the innovation department is where you got your footing. Of course, Unilever being a global brand that you had to be able to support research across the globe. Has that been a challenge to keep scaling?
It is obviously a challenge because you are just another kid on the block. You need to make the difference. That is also one of the reasons why onboard is the company to put the company on the map in the European Market because the European Market is an important test marketing research. I think we are doing a pretty good job here. Quite some traction in different verticals, not only FMCG but again once one company starts seeing the added value and they have track records where they have a customer’s journey. Where there is a proven fact that they save not hundreds but millions of dollars by using our tool. Others are looking as well and it is more easy for us in some ways to onboard them as well.
Market research is a fairly unique space to exist in, right?
Are you seeing your customers primarily centered in market research? Or are you moving directly into marketing departments?
It depends. Our tool really is used for two purposes. It is that ad hoc research and the consumer connect. Let’s say the higher target, or the higher aim in the customer journey is really like if they want to roll out a consumer connect program, an empathy program, or a closeness program, whatever you want to call it. Then our agile, or we call it more pivoting tool becomes really interesting. There the added value pops because we can connect on a regular basis with consumers. Connecting on a regular basis means that also research people, incite people, but also the marketing departments, H.R. departments, even C-level departments take can take advantage of the tool. It can be used for anyone in the company in any division for any purpose. I think this is really interesting because if they sign up for a large annual contract anyone can use it, anyone can spend a bundle. This is what I really like, that it is not only focusing on a niche like you mentioned market research.
Are you finding that the use case is more in line with decisions that are being made? For example, thinking about people that are implementing changes to user journey or software or whatever. They have a question, right?
That they need to answer, this versus that. Is that the ability to log into the platform, execute, as opposed to go through a proper market research process.
Exactly. By using our tool is just a matter of days instead of a matter of weeks. That’s what they really like. When they want to pull up that extra question, normally that takes a lot of time. First of all, it has to involve some sort of recruitment, and it has a high cost involved, and it is time-consuming. It is all about cutting these barriers and then by using our product they will be able to connect with consumers faster. When you can connect faster, means you can also go quicker to market in the end of the game. That is really where companies look at, to make it more time and cost efficient.
Amsterdam, of course, this is a spectacular city. This is my first time here. What is the one thing I should do?
One thing you should do? Last year we did, with our customers, the canal tour. That was pretty awesome. We rented a small boat and some potential customers and existing customers were on the boat tour. We had some drinks and some small snacks, and that was really cool.
You are the fifth person that has told me that. I think I’m definitely going to have to figure it out (laughs).
It must be true.
Yes, (laughs) it must be true. That’s right. Jan, Discuss.io, if someone wants to get in contact with you how would they do that?
We have a booth here, so people who are listening right now they can just visit us at the booth. If not, they can go to the website. I am on the website, they can drop a line, and we can get in contact. Or even better, we launched recently a code form, and this means that once you have a project in mind, even if it is just to get an estimation, you put the info in the landing page and you will immediately get an estimate.
I love that, and of course, the website is Discuss.io. Thank you so much for being on the Happy Market Research Podcast.
Thank you for the opportunity. I really appreciate it.