CHE Proximity launches "rapid insights" app

Rachael Micallef
By Rachael Micallef | 23 March 2016

CHE Proximity is launching Australia's first “rapid insights” research app, designed to make gathering insights cheaper, quicker and more targeted for marketers.

The app, called Black Mirror, is set to launch late next month and delivers ethnographic research at scale, through user-generated video and self-reporting through its smartphone app.

Speaking to AdNews CHE Proximity director of brand James Needham says Black Mirror seeks to fill a gap in the marketplace for marketers looking for quick, reliable research.

“There has never been more pressure for the CMO to deliver ROI,” Needham says.

“We have a client base that wants to make fast, effective businesses decisions but found they couldn't get insights quick enough.

“Black Mirror is a completely new offering in the Australian marketplace and really is democratising research and creating that instant window into a customer's life that doesn’t currently exist.”

Needham says Black Mirror can be used to gather a range of different insights, from bigger trend pieces to specific tasks, such as how a customer feels paying a bill using a new online interface.

It works by asking marketers who their target audience is, recruiting those people through the app and then sending participants the task. The app enables participants to film responses in real time.

In addition, CHE Proximity can then overlay the ethnographic feedback with a combination of other quantitative data sources to pull insights.

Needham says the other benefit in comparison to focus groups is that it has the potential to deliver a more organic response.

“With qualitative research you invite people into an artificial room and ask them questions for over an hour and a half,” Needham says.

“It's got a role to play, definitively, but in this instance, we're just getting people in their natural environment and just asking them to report through their mobile, which is with them every single day.”

While Black Mirror is designed to help clients gather research, Needham says will also have benefits for the CHE Proximity office, who will be able to use the tool to inform its own creative briefs as well as new business pitches.

It's also received attention globally, with its London and New Zealand offices looking to get involved.

Black Mirror is the latest research development from the CHE Proximity office, which last year made a deal with US data firm Annalect to help marketers understand the customer journey.

The agency also opened up an innovation division, designed to work with Australia's booming startup economy, along with announcing the launch of a Sydney office.

It follows news yesterday that GroupM has developed an insight tool, Live Panel, designed to help marketers develop more precise and targeted media plans.

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