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How TaData allows Internet users to monetize their data

TaData is the first platform for monetizing personal data. It proposes to 15-35-year-olds (for now) to earn money with their personal data. In this podcast, we welcome Laurent Pomies, one of the 2 co-founders of TaData, to tell us about his entrepreneurial adventure.

Summary

The marketing idea to be retained absolutely

Markets in which one party is “harmed” by the other (asymmetric markets) represent a business opportunity. An offer that restores the balance can attract customers who are dissatisfied with the current situation.

However, through market research methods such as online surveys or focus groups, remember to verify that this dissatisfaction is real. Also, make sure that it is “actionable,” will customers follow you if you correct it?


icône expérience entrepreneuriale et chiffres-clés

Chapter 1: TaData, 1 key figure

To date, 45,000€ have been paid out to users thanks to the monetization of their data.

We can monetize tangible goods (apartment, car), so why not our data? This was the thinking of the two co-founders of TaData: Laurent Pomies and Alexandre Vanadia.

The prevailing business models were all asymmetrical. They lacked a balance between what the customer got from the service and what the sale of his data brought in. This asymmetry is, for example, the brand of all social networks. Yet, who is ready today to do without Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and others? Not many people. It is in this breach that Laurent and Alexandre have entered.



genèse de l'idée entrepreneuriale

Chapter 2: The genesis of the business idea

The idea of TaData was inspired by the respective professional experiences of the two founders in higher education. The first, Alexandre Vanadia, was solicited to provide solutions for capturing the profiles of qualified candidates to integrate higher education schools. The second, Laurent Pomies, was looking for these profiles for the schools that employed him.

Both felt that their target group (young people) was annoyed and tired of commercial solicitations.

Focus groups conducted beforehand showed that this frustration was widespread among young people. In particular, they wanted to understand.

  • why and how their data was used
  • how to benefit from this windfall that they felt was unequal to them and also take advantage of the monetization of their data

PESTEL Analysis and Focus Groups

The founders of TaData had an excellent idea to confirm the legal aspects of their concept before anything else. This corresponds to the “L” in the PESTEL analysis.

They also conducted focus groups to ensure that future users were aware of the frustrations that TaData aims to solve. Remember that it has never been easier to do online focus groups than since Covid.


validation de l'idée entrepreneuriale

Chapter 3: Confirmation of the business idea

Before anything else, the founders of TaData approached a legal advisor to confirm the spirit of the project itself. On such a sensitive subject and at the time of the GDPR (the idea of the project was born in 2018), it was essential to have an informed and argued opinion on our project. TaData enlisted the services of the former secretary-general of the CNIL, who had participated in creating the GDPR.

Once the principle was legally confirmed, several focus groups were organized. They aimed at understanding what young people (TaData’s core target) thought of the project. These exchanges were vibrant and instructive and brought out some surprising data. They allowed us to improve and adapt the idea to fit the expectations of the target audience better. This is the added value of qualitative methods.

Launching a company in the best conditions requires collecting honest and objective feedback. That’s why TaData has proceeded with a two-step launch. A first 6-month “Test and Learn” phase limited to the Paris region was launched to get feedback from the first users and advertisers. Only then was the national launch considered.


démarrage de la startup

Chapter 4: Getting started

As is often the case, the first clients came from the founders’ professional networks. Having worked for years in the world of higher education, Laurent and Alexandre were familiar with the needs of schools in the context of their recruitment campaigns. They, therefore, constituted the first pool of customers and were quite numerous to be excited by TaData’s promise: qualified and targeted profile data, with an unprecedented level of detail.

TaData was launched on the market only one month before the first lockdown.

The project’s most complicated part was meeting customer expectations in terms of the number of profiles expected. TaData was launched on the market only one month before the first lockdown. At the first media coverage, everything “fell apart,” with the media focusing exclusively on the pandemic.

Despite the limited media coverage, the public was there. Every time the platform was highlighted, several hundred, if not thousands, new registrations were received.

Advice for the launch of your start-up

Think about making a list of all the professional contacts you can mobilize during the launch of your start-up. To increase your chances of success, activate these people before the launch of your star-tup by soliciting their advice.


phase de décollage de l'entreprise

Chapter 5: Take off

TaData is in the middle of this phase. The market test has been realized using TaData and has shown its potential and interest. Now, we have to work actively to move to the next level.

For this, Laurent and Alexandre are actively looking for investors to participate in financing the growth. They will recruit a team, mass media communication campaigns, new features, and an international opening (especially in Belgium).

The interest of TaData’s business model is that it can be adapted to all European countries since the legal aspects are homogeneous thanks to the GDPR. However, the sensitivity of young people to the “value” of their data may vary, which always requires local market research.


le futur de la startup

Chapter 6: The future

TaData’s first objective is to grow the user community significantly. The fundraising in preparation will therefore serve to achieve this objective.

In 5 years, TaData’s objective is to reach one million users and 5 million euros in turnover. They will achieve this through international development in other European countries and North Africa, and North America. Excellent prospects, in short.

A podcast to help you develop your start-up

The “Entrepreneurship and Marketing” podcast traces the different stages in the life of a promising start-up. By identifying the critical elements of success at each phase of the start-up’s development, we help you find solutions for your company.

The podcast is divided into chapters of 4 to 6 minutes. Each chapter is dedicated to a specific theme or development phase. You can listen to the entire podcast or choose to listen to only a part of it by directly selecting the one that interests you the most. You can also find the video version of the interview on our YouTube channel.

Illustration images: shutterstock

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Author: Pierre-Nicolas Schwab

Dr. Pierre-Nicolas Schwab is the founder of IntoTheMinds. He specializes in e-commerce, retail and logistics. He is also a research fellow in the marketing department of the Free University of Brussels and acts as a coach for several startups and public organizations. He holds a PhD in Marketing, a MBA in Finance, and a MSc in Chemistry. He can be contacted by email, Linkedin or by phone (+32 486 42 79 42)

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