Luis Franco, EMEA Managing Director – Survey Monkey
1. Describe your business in two paragraphs.
SurveyMonkey is the world’s leading People Powered Data platform for curious individuals and companies. We say that we enable these curious businesses to have conversations at scale with the people who matter most to them: customers, potential customers, employees. We are also an industry pioneer, so people trust SurveyMonkey’s platform to express their true feelings and opinions. SurveyMonkey turns their voices and opinions into actionable data, and for our customers--including most of Fortune 500 companies--listening to these voices is an opportunity to get to the “why” behind the sea of data that they are trying to make sense of. We now have 700+ employees throughout North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific who are dedicated to powering the curious.
2. What are your company's Unique Selling Points (USPs) in Portugal or in Ireland or in both markets if present in both?
With our new People Powered Data platform, we are uniquely positioned to deliver the expertise, speed and scale to help businesses turn the voices and opinions of the people that matter most–employees, customer and the market – into actionable data.
Expertise: With nearly 20 years of survey research experience and millions of surveys deployed, we build our expertise into the product for our customers, so they can instantly benefit from it. For example, our rich question bank or the new SurveyMonkey Genius which combines learnings from billions of responses in our database and proprietary machine-learning algorithms to help gather higher-quality data and avoid common mistakes.
Speed: With targeted solutions like SurveyMonkey CX, SurveyMonkey Engage and SurveyMonkey Audience, we can help executives get to the why really fast and take action. We already have millions of customers working inside 99% of Fortune 500 companies who love the ease of use and understand the benefits of using SurveyMonkey, and are advocating for our platform adoption at the enterprise level.
Scale: At its core, a survey is a conversation at scale, and we’ve come up with a new, mobile-first design, so that the survey-taking experience feels more like a conversation. We now also offer integrations with the most popular messengers like Facebook Messenger and Slack to help businesses drive these conversations at scale: instantly poll users, collect feedback, and engage people where they spend their time.
3. What achievement/success story(ies) are you most proud of?
Helping SurveyMonkey to become a global platform, with customers in over 190 countries and territories around the world, available in 16 languages, processing payments in 39 different currencies and having over a third of the company’s revenue being generated outside the US is undoubtedly the success story that I’m most proud of in these past 8 years. I would also add as a big accomplishment the fact that we made the cut of the Irish Great Place to Work list in 2016 and 2017.
4. What are your business current challenges and in the 2/3 years to come?
After almost 20 years of being the poster-child for the consumerization of enterprise software, people from different parts of the company bringing in SurveyMonkey because they had important questions to ask their customers, their employees, we are now at a scale where there’s so much mission-critical data on our platform that we needed to elevate our relationship with the enterprises. That’s the current opportunity we have in front of us, there are thousands of people using SurveyMonkey at these large companies and we want to show them that our people powered data platform leverages all of our skills and enables us to do things in those products that advantage the user, advantage the company and creates a strong relationship.
5. What do you think makes Portugal and/or Ireland an attractive destination to conduct your business?
Access to talent and ease of doing business in Europe were the key drivers of our decision to setup our International HQ in Ireland. Multilingual internet professionals have flocked to Dublin as a result of positive market dynamics in the technology sector. This value proposition as been reinforced by the changes to the data privacy environment in Europe where Ireland has shown to be a jurisdiction that’s on the leading edge of DP regulation.
6. What sectors do you think will thrive in Portugal and Ireland in the coming years and why?
In Portugal the tourism sector is booming, and I believe that there are strong opportunities for care services in general (healthcare, senior care, child care, etc.). In some specific areas of technology, the recent dynamic we are observing in the startup scene in Lisbon, Porto and Braga might create some strong players. Ireland continues to be one of the key tech destinations in Europe and if some of the problems that are resulting of that growth (lack of housing in Dublin and very high cost of office space) are addressed, it can continue to bet on the Tech sector as the one that will be the growth leader.
7. What is the best business advice you have ever received?
Stay curious! We ran a global survey on curiosity for last year’s Web Summit and how it drives innovation across a number of countries, including Portugal, and it's great to see that 80% of employees in Portugal are innately curious and are comfortable asking questions. Managers on the other hand, don't always encourage that: close to 50% of workers say their managers don’t encourage questions in the workplace or even actively discourage them. So, if you are a leader, that's a great advice to follow and foster the culture of curiosity from the top down too if you want to stay competitive.
8. How do you think the IPBN can help you achieve your objectives and what do you expect from your IPBN membership
I think the IPBN is a great way to expand my business network across Ireland and Portugal which will help in growing our business across the two countries.
9. Favourite destinations in Portugal and why?
Lisbon, where I was born
10. Favourite destinations in Ireland and why?
Dublin, where I live today
Luis Franco contact details
Luis Franco, MD EMEA
+353.86.465.9547 / +351 969 510 768
Second Floor, 2, Shelbourne Buildings, Shelbourne Road, Dublin 4, Ireland
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