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December 1, 2016
Brilliant - The Next Generation NPS Survey Tool for Apps and Websites

Tom Boates was ready to move on from RunKeeper, but unsure what his next step would be.

“I got to a point at RunKeeper where I was spinning my wheels a little bit and felt like it was time to move on,” said Boates, who was the Vice President of User Experience.

Tom Boates, Brilliant
Tom Boates, Founder of Brilliant

“One of my good friend’s at the company said, ‘dude, you may not have anything lined up, but you have to go out and do it,’ and his words, as well as my wife’s support encouraged me to pull the band aid off and step out and try something new.”

The ‘something new’ happened to be a brand new startup headed by Boates called Brilliant, a subscription service that allows companies to survey customers from within their own apps or websites.

Brilliant officially launched on Tuesday morning with Boates welcoming visitors to the company’s website with a quick and informative blog post about the service they will provide.   

“Brilliant helps great companies collect and manage their Net Promoter Scores (NPS) using the incredibly powerful Net Promoter System. With Brilliant, surveys are integrated into your app or website which allows for better response rates (up to 50% compared to ~20% through email), more contextually relevant responses (instant feedback instead of hours or days later), and the ability to ask your best and happiest customers to recommend your product right then and there (as they said they would),” Boates wrote on the company’s blog.

Brilliant also offers a quartet of packages for companies and businesses interested in utilizing their survey services, ranging from 100 surveys per month to 100,000.  

Constructing Brilliant

Brilliant was not an overnight process as Boates spent two years creating his new company, and just like any new startup, he encountered some obstacles along the way.

“Certainly two years to launch this version of the product was not where I wanted to be,” said Boates.

Boates’ hard work and determination came to fruition last week when Brilliant’s service was complete. He considered it a ‘very exciting moment’ – obviously, an important benchmark in the process, as well as the beginning of the next phase that will allow him to converse with various Boston companies that could utilize his service.

Said Boates, “Seeing everything come together was very exciting, but it’s also just the beginning.”

Brilliant NPS Screenshot
Brilliant Screenshot

‘Why not me?’

Throughout this particular journey – or perhaps the past decade of working for startups, Boates has accumulated various quotes or sayings that have inspired him to keep moving forward. His favorite words of wisdom is ‘why not me?’

Boates considers the three words motivation and the driving force to not give up or succumb to any fallbacks.

“With anything, especially startup companies, there is a lot of doubt or those who may not encourage you, but I often remind myself ‘why not me.’ And instead of focusing on what I don’t have going for me, I instead think about what I do have going for me,” said Boates.

‘Why not me’ will be Boates’ motivation over the next few weeks and months as he begins the next phase of Brilliant by conversing with various companies about his services. While he knows it may not be easy to convince everyone immediately to sign up as a customer, he is certainly up for the challenge.


Matt Noonan is a contributor to VentureFizz. Follow him on Twitter: @MattNoonan11.