Apparently, preparing for meetings properly — the who, what and where — is a pain-point for some. This is especially true for sales people who have to hold a lot of meetings and where preparation can make the difference when trying to push a prospect over the line. That’s the problem Lowdown is setting out to solve. The UK startup has created an iOS app that automatically pulls together information from your phone and elsewhere online to make meetings run smoother.
To begin with, Lowdown looks at your phone’s calendar for upcoming meetings. It then identifies attendees, pulling in LinkedIn and other online info about them and the company they work at, such as recent company-related news.
In addition, presuming you’ve linked your various social media accounts, it looks at what contacts you have in common with your meeting attendees, helping to flag up further opportunities for business networking.
The app also ties into email, enabling you to quickly see and respond to any recent email exchanges with attendees so that you’re not wrong-footed when you meet.
Lowdown will help you get to meetings, too. It looks at the location of your meeting, and, presuming those details are included in your calendar entry, the app will offer directions and help you navigate to your destination via Apple Maps or Google Maps. This includes providing estimated journey time, so hopefully you won’t arrive late.
Once in a meeting, not only does Lowdown provide access to the aforementioned information,
it also offers in a planned update it will also offer written, voice and photographic note taking, which is pretty handy for any follow up actions. Always be closing, remember.
“Sales people like to be prepared for meetings,” says Lowdown co-founder and CEO David Senior. “They search and sift through numerous freely available internet services — maps, LinkedIn, Twitter, company house info, websites, Wikipedia, notes, emails etc. — to prep for meetings.
“Your mobile knows where you’ve been, where you’re going, who you’re meeting, and from which company and when. We access the native device services (calendar, contacts, location) and use this to cross reference the data with internet-based digital information.”
Although Lowdown is initially targeted at UK sales people who have client meetings, the startup has had interest from “any busy professional that hosts or attends business meetings,” says Senior. It’s also been in talks with “numerous enterprise companies” who are interested in tailoring Lowdown for their workforce.
“We foresee Lowdown becoming a platform for meetings, both business and then social meet-ups across all relevant platforms, then globally once the model has been proven and improved,” he adds.
To that end, the business model, as it currently stands, is to charge a subscription for the app: £4.99 per user per month or as an annual subscription at £50 per user, although there is a 30-day free trial. That’s feels quite pricey for what seems like a nice-to-have app, not an essential one for someone who takes a lot of meetings.
Or maybe I just enjoy winging it.