How Canny became a need for every company…
We all know that innovative startups can’t exist without an idea, and the idea might either be solving a problem we have had for a long time, or even solving a problem we never even knew we had. There are also startups that take one big headache and streamline it so that it is evaluated and accessed in a way that previously wasn’t possible. This is the case with Canny, a startup that seeks to make examining customer feedback easier for companies around the world than it has ever been. There is simply no denying the value of feedback, as it often leads to companies realizing they are going in the wrong direction, or propels them to go further down the right direction.
A company understanding the right feedback at the right moment, could mean pivoting at a critical moment that ensures survival. There is simply no doubt that a company that fails to properly evaluate feedback won’t be able to grow properly, and their users/customers will flock to a competitor who listens to them more intently.
Canny seeks to manage feedback more efficiently for companies, to ensure productivity. It also allows customers to vote and post about feedback from within the website or mobile app itself, so that each company, whether they are established or a new startup, can immediately get an idea of what issues are most pressing. The company can then make sure that customers are notified about the status of feedback, by stating whether the issue is “fixed” or “in progress”.
The company realized immediately that it had to establish the right price point to establish a promising network of customers. This is important for many startups to understand. The truth is that there are all sorts of apps and services that are offering a lot to their users for free, especially as investors are all clamoring for user growth rates rather than actual revenue, which can always be worked out later. As a result, services which do actually seek to charge customers, such as Canny, get caught in a bit of a quandary. It is obvious that Canny is the kind of company that should be charging companies money, since they are mining absolutely valuable information from their customers, and doing so in a way that is interactive. This means that they originally make the old feedback system obsolete, while providing new insight. However, because they are new, they realized that they should start off with a cheap fee, in order to entice businesses. They determined that anyone who would use the product for free, might not be a lasting customer, so establishing a low price point would at least be able to set the tone for the future, and clearly designate clients that were willing to pay, even if it was next nothing. They smartly decided on 2 dollars, and immediately started signing up companies who saw the value in Canny.
Feedback is often extremely linear and simple. If you are using a website or an app, there often is a rating system, or a yes/no option for a user to really describe whether their experience was positive or negative. Of course, there often are areas where the customer can go into further detail, but the process ends there.
- How do you know whether your voice has been heard?
- Unless you contact the company directly – how do you know whether they actually even thought about the problem?
- Do they even have an answer?
Canny – which means “having or showing good judgment” – allows companies to do just as its name suggests – make the best decisions for its customers, and ensure that exactly what they want to be addressed, is addressed. This could be anything: whether there is a feature that many users find particularly annoying, or another feature that seems obvious to users, that the team happened to overlook. It is this specific way to interact with a company and provide interactive feedback that could be the difference between a customer who sticks around, or starts looking for an alternative option. Furthermore, if the customer actually helps improve the company, even in a small way, it might mean that they are more prone to spreading the word about it, as they are more invested, and feel as if the company has listened to them.
Of course, the company has its own challenges. The $2 plan is quite benevolent but isn’t particularly sustainable if the company seeks to become a powerhouse. It’s obvious that the plan is priced that way to start to gain customers. One great perk is that the founders of the company both come from Facebook. The beauty of having the skills and experience at an established company like Facebook is that, when you have the right idea, the company you used to work at just might implement your product! That’s exactly what happened, as Canny has been used now by Facebook to keep track of feature requests. It isn’t hard to imagine the kind of paths a company can go to, once a half-trillion dollar company like Facebook begins to see the value in your service.
The bottom line is that currently, Canny isn’t a media darling, and investors aren’t necessarily chasing after it. However, it has clear value as an SaaS service, and the founders have been able to be “digital nomads”, after leaving San Francisco. The fact that they travel could actually open countless connections, as they make sure to travel to cities with intense startup cultures, all of which have unique problems with their own user base. The beauty of it is that Canny could actually help them! A company like Canny is a startup that actually can help any other startup it comes into contact with. Canny understands that it has a long way to go to generating a hundred million dollars – which means that 100,000 companies would be paying $10 a month for their service, for example. One thing is for certain, though – their service is useful, it makes sense, it solves problems, and it can help companies learn about their customers. It may not be the sexiest product, service, or platform out there, but it is useful, and useful goes a long way.