Today’s fast-paced businesses need objective information to make wise decisions. Enter Greek start-up Pollfish, revolutionizing the world of online surveys.
Greek start-up Pollfish: the evolution
Conducting surveys is one of the most unbiased approaches to making a good business decision. That’s how Pollfish was born.
Pollfish is a market research company that creates in-depth surveys then quickly sends them to select audiences on a global scale. This is also done through mobile, which for a long time was considered unchartered territory for a number of industries. Today, digital marketers are utilizing mobile — where people typically spend most of their time — to connect with customers more intimately and around the clock. Pollfish serves their needs. Co-founder & CTO Giannis Zaoudis spoke about this.
“We’re a technology company at heart, taking surveys and we reach an audience of more than 400 million consumers worldwide. It is this audience that provides top quality responses due to its diversity and really fast turn-arounds due to its size.”
Giannis started his career as a full stack engineer. Along with his fellow Greek business partners John Papadakis, Andreas Vourkos, and Zissis Bellas, who are also engineers, they collaborated in the smartphone app space. Eventually, they came up with the idea for what became Pollfish. They realized that companies wanted feedback from their audiences. He said that is how their developer tool was created to do just that: collect responses from an app.
“It all quickly pivoted to a market research solution so that every organization can gather feedback from consumers in real-time.”
Growth and challenges
When Pollfish was established in 2012, Giannis and his co-founders started from zero. Plus, Greece was in the deep of the economic crisis in Europe. However, they were determined to build a sound business development model and move forward with product development.
“What we did was cold call thirty market research firms in Greece and try to sell a product we didn’t have which eventually lead to three sales. We thought if we can convert 10 percent of the companies in Greece during such a crisis then probably there is some value to what we are doing. In that aspect, the crisis helped us believe in what we do. However, in all the other aspects this was a bottleneck.”
He said the company started growing as they invested in product development and marketing.
“Huge growth makes you feel happy and it’s great! However, the stakes are much higher so it’s more intense and, in many ways, increases the level of responsibilities.”
Their hard work paid off. Today, Giannis stated that Pollfish clients are extremely engaged with the product. He said that clients are impressed with Pollfish, and can gain quality responses for their surveys within a couple of hours — at a really low cost.
“We have been focused on the customer and the whole user experience when someone uses the product from design to customer support, in order to make every touchpoint a memorable experience.”
He added that the biggest challenge for Pollfish is getting hit by the learning curve of the market research industry. He said that figuring out technical difficulties, especially when handling more than 400 million consumers in real-time, poses an array of challenges.
Looking forward for Pollfish
Giannis admitted that success is still being defined but he also declared that he’s happy with client feedback and how his product is making a difference for so many businesses around the world.
“Having a happy customer base and a happy team is a good indication of something being done right.”
Five years since its founding, Pollfish is funded by Greek and American venture capitalists and angel investors. The company has raised more than $5 million in capital which helped it grow from 10 million users to more than 400 million users and from a team of four people to a team of 40+ in two offices. Besides Athens, Greece, the company now has a second office in New York City. Pollfish has received media attention from major newspapers, including the New York Times, The Washington Post and most recently in other media outlets for how its technology predicted Brexit.
Giannis added that Pollfish will certainly be focusing on the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) in the market research space. One of the company’s latest technology releases has also included what is known as “purchase intent” which is powered by AI components that analyze user behavior related to purchasing a car or real estate, for example.
Looking forward, Giannis expressed that he wants to offer improved services for his customers and for the business to continue to evolve with the tech world’s fast changing pace of change.
“In the future, we see Pollfish as a way for clients to instantly, like within seconds, gain top quality consumer insights so sound business decisions can be made.”
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