Conversation with Polly, the Parrot for Businesses on Twitter

Conversation with Polly, the Parrot for Businesses on TwitterWhat is the name of your business and URL?

Polly.IM (http://polly.im)

A brief synopsis of the website / application:

Polly.IM is for local businesses to categorize customer tweets and suggest responses. Polly can understand if a tweet is a positive comment, negative feedback, check-in, or a question. It can then pick a customized response to send back.

Polly.IM is effectively a new type of social customer relationship management system. It helps track customer interactions on social media and ensures follow up happens with customers so that they can know they are heard and valued. It also makes sure new followers can get on ramped by welcoming them and providing special promotions to encourage new transactions.

Why did you start this company?

Many small businesses I’ve worked with in the past have complained about how social media is a bit overwhelming and were looking for a solution to help stay up to date with responses. The business owners would typically fail to respond to every one of their customers or give up completely and shun social media altogether. I thought there had to be a better way to handle this problem.

Was your company started on a shoestring budget or funded?

We raised $1MM+ in seed capital.

Who is your competition, and what do you do better?

http://socialoomph.com is our primary competition. We designed a simple and easy to use product that is free of bloated features no one uses. In addition, our product is meant to keep the human touch by helping suggest responses and actions to users rather than completely automating the process.

Why would a small business, entrepreneur, freelancer, etc use your product?

Conversation with Polly, the Parrot for Businesses on TwitterOur free product saves business owners a lot of time in categorizing customer tweets and responding to them, which is an important though time consuming part of customer service and marketing.

These business owners should care about listening and responding to their customers online since these individuals are their most vocal customers. They tend to be quite loyal and also able to drive new business.

How could you effectively use these tools?

You can use Polly.IM to send coupons to new followers, thank people who check-in, and acknowledge feedback given. You can solicit more reviews and tips for other potential customers to see by making your customized message solicit more customer actions.

A short bio of your company:

Polly.IM is a project of PaperG, Inc which is an ad technology startup. PaperG works with over 100 media partners such as Hearst Newspapers, Gannett, and McClatchy. In addition, it has worked with over 20,000 local advertisers including Whole Foods and H&M.

Its suite of products includes Flyerboard and PlaceLocal. Flyerboard is a virtual bulletin board used by publishers to enable local advertisers to post print ads online in an interactive format. PlaceLocal is an automated way to build dynamic display ads for local advertisers using just a business name and address.

Do you offer free online or offline tools?

Free online tools

Are there different pricing levels?

In the future we will add premium levels which will enable paying customers to run social media advertising campaigns and view analytics. In addition, paying customers will be able to send more than 1 tweet a day which is the current rate limit for free users.

Do you have a blog that keeps users updated?

Not yet.

Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn or ? Provide exact URL of each

https://www.facebook.com/pages/PollyIM/123701507711908

https://twitter.com/polly_im

Youtube watch video URL for group of a video link from Youtube?

None

How long have you been in business?

Polly.IM has been live for 1 week. PaperG has been in business for 4 years.

Number of current users? Estimated yearly growth?

Polly.IM has hundreds of users since launching last week. It will have 10,000 estimated users in a year.

How do you see your company in the next 2-5 years (more products or services?)

Polly.IM will not just a social customer relationship management system but will be a complete social media advertising platform. It will provide ways to track online to offline results for social media by showing how online offers through Twitter can translate into real world foot traffic and conversions.

How many employees do you currently have working with you and/or freelance contractors?

15 people.

Are you looking to hire more people or contractors? If so, what positions and skills are you looking for?

We are looking for experienced product managers and engineers.

What other web based products would you recommend to entrepreneurs, business owners, or freelancers?

Twitter is an absolute necessary product for any entrepreneur or business owner. It helps surface interesting and useful content relating to any business. It also helps generate customer interest in your company. Most importantly, it facilitates communication between businesses and customers. The conversation is happening there so every business must participate.

Yammer is a fantastic enterprise social network which allows teams to collaborate and share information. My team used it effectively for status updates.

Highrise is a great customer relationship management system that can track all contacts of the company. We store all our communications on Highrise so we have a history of all interactions with our customers and partners.

Any Patents Pending?

The sentiment analysis engine behind Polly is patent pending.

 

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