At this year’s Northwest Entrepreneur Network’s Entrepreneur University Flip the Media partnered with Jenni Hogan, CEO of TVinteract, to hear “Prime Time Pitches” from local start-ups. This article is the fourth in a series of profiles of up-and-coming entrepreneurs in the Pacific Northwest.
If you’ve ever been part of planning a focus group, you’ll appreciate our next startup in our NWEN Primetime Pitch series. Discuss.IO is a year-old startup out of Seattle and is on a mission to enable more companies the ability to gather qualitative research about their customers.
Due to the high cost of traditional focus groups, qualitative research was often a luxury reserved for big-name brands with budget to allocate. Take into account the vendors, participants, and other moving parts that go along with planning a focus group; Zach Simmons says it is often compared to planning a wedding.
Simmons is the founder of Discuss.IO, which describes itself on its website as “a qualitative market research service that leverages the Internet, webcams, and crowdsourcing to deliver accurate, cost-effective, on-demand consumer data to marketing decision makers.
Discuss.IO claims to eliminate the hassle, and more importantly the excessive cost, of traditional, in-person focus groups. The cloud-based platform requires zero setup and businesses can begin conducting targeted, crowd-sourced interviews almost immediately after creating an account. Among its suite of available tools include real-time webcam discussion, screen-sharing, and synchronized transcripts for post interview analysis.
Watch the video with Jenni Hogan where Simmons explains how the idea for the company came about, who their target customer is, and what will take Discuss.IO to the next level. Will Northwest startups like this one succeed in leveling the playing field for other up-and-comers? The coming year may show us the answer.