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Think Like an App

with Neal Polachek

Think Like an App

with Neal Polachek

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We are excited to have independent board member and advisor for local, small and medium sized business and SaaS technologies on the show today. Neal Polachek is an expert advisor, and Tracy's partner on the Growth Lab Experience Live. Neal’s resume includes Director of Research and Consulting, VP of Advisory Services, CEO of The Kelsey Group, President of BIA/Kelsey, and more.

Neal talks about what it means to think like an app and how it affects the modern consumer. We talk about how to build trust through transparency and social proof. We discuss how this model can use data and insights to engage with customers in a personal way. We also talk about how modern technologies will allow businesses to go from reactive to proactive.


Show Notes

[03:15] We are in the age of the new modern consumer. Our phones are how we connect to the world around us.

[04:10] The modern consumer has grown up on the internet.

[04:21] The notion of think like an app is for business owners to connect really well with this modern consumer.

[04:37] Start applying some of the principles that define good apps to your business.

[05:29] The new modern consumer will check their phone for a better price while shopping at a store. They need a fair amount of social proof.

[06:06] This is a shift from the producers having all of the power to the buyer's having all of the power.

[07:04] Consumers have been able to use Yelp as a battering ram for some of these businesses.

[08:05] Most apps require a review or feedback. Business owners have been bashful about asking for reviews.

[08:51] Apps are forcing business owners to take the feedback and use it in a positive way.

[09:21] Feedback is really quite helpful, and business owners are starting to understand it's as valuable for their business as it might feel bad for their business.

[11:17] Reviews are the manifestation of the customer service that the business has delivered.

[16:20] There are a lot of technologies out there that make it easy for businesses to request reviews. With these tools you can build a review stream that would take yours, because you're tapping into all of your customers.

[17:36] These tools are usually connected to CRMs.

[18:24] Part of being the modern consumer is liking to see progress of things. This is part of gamification and part of tapping into progress.

[19:57] Domino's changed the game in pizza, because they turned themselves into a technology company to serve pizza. Their app gives you step-by-step progress of your pizza.

[21:59] This progress tracking technology can be used for many different businesses.

[22:44] The last 10 years of technology has allowed so much more transparency.

[23:29] Sharing the progress of your business is a way to keep customers engaged.

[26:19] Apps don't sleep. Use some type of technology to capture inbound calls instead of voicemail.

[27:29] Everybody needs to find a different way of connecting to their customers that doesn't include voicemail.

[28:05] The modern consumer uses apps and expects text responses.

[28:51] We've now moved into texting with colleagues and business partners.

[29:57] Businesses can use live Chatbots to be more available.

[31:16] Local service provider should know your name and how you want to be addressed. Consumers expect that level of personalization.

[32:37] What can small and medium-sized businesses do with some of the information about their customers behavior? It's all about exposing the data you have and being more transparent.

[36:17] 5G is the next wireless technology that's coming. These faster networks will allow service providers to monitor equipment that they install or sell to us. This is moving from reactive to proactive service providing.

[41:24] A practical example featuring Tracy and Andre's Health Club. Know who your clients are and track your client successes. Feed your clients insights about their training.

Thank You

Tracy Oswald
Andre Archimbaud


Rob Heath -
Ronan Fitzgerald -


Neal Polachek