Interview with Tim Wilson, CEO and Principal at Qutee

Tim Wilson qutee
Tim Wilson

Tell us what inspired you to come up with Qutee?

The Web 2.0 revolution has failed to bring the digital democracy it promised. Billions of comments are posted across social media, discussion forums and comments sections each day, but they disappear from a user’s view within hours or minutes. This means huge amounts of valuable information are never explored for deeper insight. As a result, content creators, publishers and brands can’t listen to feedback, and audiences continually feel that they aren’t heard. Online discussion has largely been fractured across the board.

Qutee came about as our engagement and analytics company Sentiment360 evolved. We wanted to put our technology to good use and permanently increase the quality of the online debate for everyone.

How can marketers leverage Qutee to drive sales and marketing?

The Qutee platform offers depths of data and insight regarding online communities that marketers need, particularly at a time when consumer behaviors are increasingly unpredictable and the business world becomes ever more competitive. Because every comment is analyzed, tracked and archived in the Qutee platform, marketers can collect meaningful and useful data from their digital communities in real time. From finding out what kind of content your consumers are most interested in, to why they would or wouldn’t buy your new product, to how your service could best benefit them in the future, Qutee provides a direct channel of communication and market research. This ultimately helps save time and money while optimizing sales and marketing strategies based on real-time audience opinion.

How has Qutee used influencer marketing to enhance its customer database?

We have forged relationships with leading influencers in the gaming and tech spaces since the early days of Qutee. We’ve invited influencers such as Phylol, Huzzy and CapgunTom to curate conversations with their audiences on the platform. This is a strategy we’ve continued to pursue as it has proved successful. We were able to grow our database organically and authentically because these audiences were engaging in the discussions and polls that mattered to them. By granting stock in the business to the influencers who have become successful partners, we’re creating strategic relationships which are key to the sustainable growth of the platform.

How does Qutee differ from its more widely used competitors like Reddit and Twitter?

Unlike Reddit or Twitter, Qutee’s platform allows for real-time data analysis which takes place with every comment posted on the platform. What this means for users, whether that’s the public, brands, charities or influencers, is that you can filter thousands of comments in real time to find the people and comments that interest you within each Qutee data discussion. Existing social media platforms would need a fundamental overhaul of their infrastructure to make this possible. With Qutee, you have access to the audience listening tools you’d otherwise have to pay site owners to access, along with a world-class analytics dashboard without the $5,000 to $10,000 price tag.

With the evolution of AI/ML technology, how are conversational platforms developing?

We have a very different approach to AI/ML. Every commentator tags their comment with a descriptor which could be sentiment-based (e.g. positive/negative/agree/disagree) or specific to the discussion (‘gamer level,’ ‘product feature,’ ‘area of interest’).

This provides in-depth and precise data, and it is also a collaborative approach to AI, unlike the traditional approach of ML where humans are removed from helping improve the AI.

In 2018, do you think data-driven analytical platforms like Qutee will be the need of the hour?

Absolutely. The post-truth era shows no signs of waning. Having data-heavy insight is going to be the key to navigating the digital landscape in 2018 and beyond. Brands, media owners and publishers are going to feel the repercussions of the fake news era with increasing intensity, as will their audiences. Using data to raise the standards of online debate will be a significant way for companies to maintain the trust of their audiences and reputation of their brand.

Could you tell us more about your standout digital moment to date?

The recent FIFA 18 engagement with our strategic influencers showed the power, reach and utility of Qutee. We collected over 1,800 comments and 3,000 poll results in less than 36 hours which identified the key issues with the release: unprecedented market research and data democracy at work for the benefit of all.

Are there any other startups that you are keen on?

Outside our realm of experience, I’m particularly interested in the cognitive enhancement space. I firmly believe that cognitive enhancement will challenge digital AI as well as VR within 25 years.

One word that best describes how you work.

Smart (and fast, with as little ego as possible).

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?

WhatsApp. Why? Because so many business contacts outside the US have forsaken email for WhatsApp. Madness!

What is one of your smartest work-related shortcut or productivity hack?

Fast evolution; don’t overthink and don’t obsess about real outlier issues. We aren’t building software for jet liners! Don’t use PhotoShop laboriously for an idea; sketch it on a piece of paper! Capture the moment of innovation. Also, working by committee is tiresome. Silos of excellence are key with no more than three experts in each silo.

What is on your reading list right now? How do you keep yourself informed?

I’m currently reading “Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World” (which is superb) and also an historical piece on the Kursk tank battle which intersects neatly with a great short story by Arthur C Clarke called “Superiority.” This story depicts an arms race and shows how the side which is more technologically advanced can be defeated, despite its apparent superiority, because of its own organizational flaws and its willingness to discard old technology without having fully perfected the new. Meanwhile, the enemy steadily built up a far larger arsenal of weapons that, while more primitive, were more reliable.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

Be kind and be smart.

Who’s the one person in the industry whose answers to these questions you would love to read?

Elon Musk. Love or hate him, he makes the wheels turn.

Thank you Tim! That was fun and hope to see you back on MarTech Series soon.

Tim is CEO of Qutee.com, the first social media site that is powered by data discussions, democratises data and hands the power of analytics technology to everyone for free.

qutee
A data-driven comments and discussion platform that empowers online communities to have deeper and more meaningful conversations, where every thought or opinion is valuable and valued. Qutee is all about the best commenting experience on a wide range of topics that allows you to discover and filter conversations utilizing advanced conversational analytics.

The MTS Martech Interview Series is a fun Q&A style chat which we really enjoy doing with martech leaders. With inspiration from Lifehacker’s How I work interviews, the MarTech Series Interviews follows a two part format On Marketing Technology, and This Is How I Work. The format was chosen because when we decided to start an interview series with the biggest and brightest minds in martech – we wanted to get insight into two areas … one – their ideas on marketing tech and two – insights into the philosophy and methods that make these leaders tick.

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