Big Data, Big Industry: Insights In The Moment

by Brent Williams on November 30, 2016 Comments Off on Big Data, Big Industry: Insights In The Moment

Just like many other companies, those conducting business conferences try to improve the overall experience and value for those who attend each year. If they can send attendees back to their respective offices satisfied and inspired, the likelihood of return attendance is high.

A common way to gauge attendee satisfaction levels is to distribute surveys, either at the event itself or shortly thereafter. This relies on willingness to participate, and accuracy of insight after the event is over.

Wouldn’t it be great to engage attendees in real-time to record their satisfaction, or dissatisfaction, with conference events and speakers?

The people at A Fourth Act, a company set out to engage audiences through compelling storytelling, created an app called “Harvis” and are attending seminars to test its effectiveness in the real world.

Using a swipe-based feedback approach, those in attendance are able to offer in-the-moment feedback regarding what they are seeing and hearing. When they like or don’t like something, they can swipe accordingly. Their responses are then recorded and displayed graphically so event organizers can have a better understanding of how attendees are responding to specific content.

In the world of research, there are a number of benefits to collecting data in real-time. However, there are also a number of obstacles to overcome. One of which is technical capabilities.

A common approach is known as “on-site intercept” where individuals approach customers requesting their participation in a study. They are asked a series of questions verbally and responses are then recorded. Part of the challenge here is to avoid disrupting the customer experience, which reflects poorly on the brand and might possibly skew respondent feedback.

Through this Harvis app, respondents participate voluntarily by downloading the app to their mobile device. From there, they are free to swipe or not swipe reflecting their reactions to what they are hearing and seeing. With this technology, many of the real-time data collection obstacles are overcome and companies can get a feel for what people are thinking in the moment.


Share this post:


Brent Williams is Brand Development Manager at MacKenzie Corporation. His optimism is contagious, and he brings a unique energy to all of his projects. While Brent carries an “outside the box” mentality, his ideas are conceptually based on his formal business education and extensive work experience as a Research Consultant for top-tier organizations such as the NFL, NBA, NHL, Red Bull USA and many others.

Brent WilliamsBig Data, Big Industry: Insights In The Moment