Johnny Warström, CEO and co-founder of Mentimeter, discusses how the Sweden-based interactive presentation software got its start and what it can do.
The team behind the creation of Mentimeter first met at university and after we had been working in business development and consultancy roles for around five or six years, the need for greater meeting interaction hit us. Our jobs required us to lead internal company meetings and we found audience participation was almost entirely lacking, and this made achieving the meeting’s objectives more difficult.
Additionally, the audience interaction and engagement platforms available all shared a common issue — they could not be accessed easily and were really only suitable for large meetings in established venues. Internal meetings were left behind.
Expensive and complex infrastructure requirements were the key setbacks, so we determined to create a system that was free to use and could be set up in five minutes with no more equipment needed than a portable device -— a laptop, tablet, smartphone for example.
Mentimeter achieves these objectives. Anyone can use our online service for live interaction during meetings of any size. It is self-service and super simple. The person leading the meeting simply logs into their Mentimeter account and begins to create presentation slides — they look very similar to PowerPoint, but, the difference is, people can interact with them by voting on an issue or rearranging a list in order of priority. The audience connects by using the meeting leader’s unique ID code.
Our target sector is meetings of 15-20 people, but the system can scale up and has been used with an audience of over 15,000 people. It works because it’s simple and enables people to become part of what is being created in the room. This gives the meeting a lively and positive vibe.
We currently have over 25 million users in more than 100 countries. I can see that as direct live interaction with brands and personalities becomes the norm on sites such as YouTube and Instagram, incorporating technologies like ours into meetings will be mainstream. We want to be a big part of creating that. Interactions that are fun and playful are so successful — our next step is to develop options to incorporate them more.