Here is something that affects each and every one of us. Our smartphones have scores of embedded apps, many of which - let us admit it - have no use at all. The designers of these apps might not like the sentence above, but it is the reality. For every app used daily or weekly, there are maybe ten others that are rarely used.
The mobile app market and its sub-market - mobile app distribution - almost daily seek the next big thing to streamline the distribution process and make it as effective as possible, both for the app designer and for the user. This is the market of TapReason Ltd., founded in 2014, and has five employees. Its founders CEO Nimrod Elias, CPO Ailon Velger, and CTO Jane Velger - are all veterans of the IDF Mamram - Center of Computing and Information Systems. The company has raised $500,000 to date, mostly from Nielsen Innovate.
“TapReason’s solution was born when we, as entrepreneurs, personally experienced the need,” says Elias. “My two co-founders and I developed a mobile app to solve the problem of smart shopping. In other words, when you are seeking a particular product, it gives you the most relevant recommendation. After we put the app on stores, we discovered that we needed to invest a lot of time and effort to cause current users to market it. In other words, to share, rate, and so forth. We discovered that this was not just our problem, but an acute problem in the entire mobile app industry.”
Elias says that this gave rise to the idea for TapReason. “TapReason’s uniqueness is the understanding that moving users to act is a process of optimization. In other words, to know when to approach the user. Our primary intellectual property, which differentiates us from other companies in the market, is that we measure the entire viral distribution process, and focus on the timing of the approach to the user, because the timing is the factor that determines whether he will share, rate, etc.”
When Elias mentions “the entire distribution process,” he means that TapReason’s solution examines both what happens when the app is used, and what happens beyond that time. “TapReason identifies the potential user, knows when and how to contact him, on which channel, with what message to ask him to share, and after he does so, it can examine who received the same message and acted on it; in other words, who actually downloaded the app because his friend shared his experience with it. That is what is meant by measuring the entire viral distribution process, and our uniqueness is identifying the timing,” he says.
TapReason’s clients are app designers, and its solution is installed on every app that it cooperates with. The end user is unaware of TapReason’s technology embedded in the app.
Finding the viral potential
To simplify the technological explanation, we will take an example from daily life. One of the apps that TapReason works with is called Breezometer (and yes, it is Israeli), which measures air quality, specifically, the degree of air pollution, and is especially important for people, such as residents of Haifa and the Krayot, who live near polluting factories. “People living in Haifa will open this app much more frequently than residents of other cities,” says Elias, adding, “The moment a person opens the app, after previously using it several times, and more than once, and stays on it for several minutes, TapReason’s solution will open a window, so long as he is on the app, which will suggest that he share his experience with the app with his friends and/or rate it, and so on. The message in the window will be personalized.”
Elias says that making an approach when the app is in use is intended to minimize harassment of the user, thereby helping app designers to fulfill its viral potential. “Potential is expressed when the user is within the experience, not outside it; i.e. within the app,” he says.
Elias says that TapReason hopes to make money from its solution from app designers, which sign up for the service for free, but pays for premium features. Payment can be monthly, based on the number of features the app designer opts for.
TapReason’s solution is still in the beta stage at hundreds of different apps already found on millions of smartphones. The company has an Android version, and is working on an Apple version. “It’s very important to us to have a wow effect, which is why it’s still in beta,” says Elias.
TapReason will naturally be measured by its performance, and not just on the performance of others. “We’re measured by two criteria,” explains Elias. “The first is the number of downloads generated from using our solution. The second is based on how TapReason is able to activate the user. Almost every app designer knows the definitions of its viral measures, but most do not really take measurements. TapReason allows it to measure, and, at the same time, allows it to know how it is improving the viral distribution process.”
Smartup3 mentor, Explore.Dream.Discover CEO Duby Lachovitz says, “TapReason provides a unique technological response to the viral distribution of apps by information-targeted methodologies collected from the use by each individual user. Mobile consumer conduct is like a black box, and still has many missing elements, sort of like blind spots. For this reason, we believe that TapReason’s technology has great added value. Its entrepreneurs are also outstanding, veterans of Unit 8200 and Mamram, with many years of relevant experience. We are sure that the company will grow and succeed in offering an excellent technology solution that is needed in the field.”
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on October 29, 2015
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