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The newly released Twitter app Periscope offers a modern twist to better understanding customer opinions, behaviors and preferences. That’s according to Andrew Reid, founder and chief product officer of Vision Critical, in an article he wrote for Medium.

“Though Periscope is in its early days, it represents a huge opportunity for companies to understand what drives customer behavior,” Reid explains. “I predict that we will soon see customers pushing and highlighting what they like and don’t through Periscope as the first wave of customer feedback and opinion — insight companies can learn from without knocking on doors.”

While media coverage about Twitter’s acquisition of Periscope has focused on development tools like payment solutions and discovery options, Reid says the app’s real potential is helping companies get to know today’s empowered customer. According to Reid, the app provides an unprecedented opportunity for brands to uncover shopper behavior without ever observing or sitting with customers in person.

In a separate statement, Reid elaborates:

Long ago, researchers would sit for hours with families to uncover shopper behaviors and preferences through conversations and observations. With Periscope, live streaming finally meets social media—what I see as new age ethnography, and the real business value for companies.

It's revolutionary for a business to be able to watch a customer move through a store line 3,000 miles away and hear live critiques from shoppers about things like product preferences, store layout and promotions. Periscope offers more than outdated transactional data or an anonymous tweet. If you’re a business, the app offers a direct connection with an actual customer in your store using your product or visiting your website. Soon, a lot of mistakes will be uncovered. Just think, the next time an airline upsets a customer, it will end up on Periscope faster than on YouTube.

As the founder and president of a customer intelligence software company, I believe that people want to share their lives and what they want in them. Companies that want to be successful will listen and deliver, and those that will win are already thinking about how to advantageously leverage Periscope today.

Although live streaming is not completely new, Periscope—together with Meerkat, which made waves at SXSW— is reigniting excitement for this technology. The involvement of the social media giant Twitter is helping fuel the buzz. Reid believe brands should think of Periscope as more than another broadcasting or marketing platform. By giving companies a look into their customers’ lives, live streaming apps could help brands improve their products and services and deliver a better customer experience. Companies that look at Periscope through the lens of customer intelligence are in a much better position to tap into the promise of live streaming in driving revenue.

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Kelvin Claveria

Kelvin Claveria was the former Content Marketing Manager and was responsible for Vision Critical's blog and social media marketing program. Before joining Vision Critical's global marketing team, Kelvin worked at Dunn PR, a Vancouver-based public relations firm. His experience includes working with lifestyle, real estate, and non-profit clients to develop social media marketing and PR strategies. Kelvin has a Bachelor of Business Administration from SFU's Beedie School of Business.
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