A new smartphone app allows small-business owners to keep a bird’s-eye view of how their competitors are using social media. Everything from their Yelp reviews, Internet deals and Twitter updates, without having to “likeâ€ or “followâ€ their competitors.
The app, called Perch, is made to help small business owners keep an eye on their competition, without overloading them with info.
“What we found is they’re so overwhelmed, they’re a little bit frozen. They’re feeling more anxious and less in the know,â€ said Perry Evans, former CEO of Mapquest.
Evans said merchants are “hyper-interestedâ€ in feedback from sites such as Yelp because of the social influence consumer reviews can have on their business.
“When creating Perch, we had one goal in mind — make it easy for merchants to stay in the know with the everyday pulse of social marketing and promotion activities happening around them. With Perch, business owners have a live bird’s eye view into local marketing without spending hours doing the research.â€
The mobile app fits easily into a business owner’s daily activities and is the first of its kinds.
Perch is very similar to TweetDeck, which helps people read and organize twitter postings as well as Facebook. It has a scrolling, personalized list of individual businesses’ new activity on social media which can be retrieved by tapping an icon for more details.
“The best thing we can do is help businesses save more time, feel more in control and understand who they think they’re competing with, what’s going on around them,â€ Evans says. “They have their business. Then there’s this other thing which is learning how to do Facebook and search optimization and Yelp…It’s just a lot to learn and master.â€