Tello raises $2.7M, launches a tool for businesses

About a year ago, a mobile app called Tello launched, making it easy for users to quickly rate customer service interactions in real time. Tello could tie ratings to a store using a customer’s physical location and let them give a thumbs-up or thumbs-down to individual employees working within that place, providing instant feedback on their transaction. While the app allowed users to quickly see ratings of different retail locations, and in some cases avoid surly employees, it was only somewhat helpful to the business owners themselves for evaluating interactions and improving customer service.

That’s changing. Tello is rolling out a set of tools to allow businesses to get granular data about customer ratings and to respond to those customers in real time. Tello for Business allows business owners and location managers to be notified when customers rate their employees, and it also provides a way for them to open a dialogue with customers through a messaging tool within the app. That gives them the potential to get in touch with disgruntled customers before they even leave the store.

Tello for Business is a Web-based app that not only provides the messaging function but also lets companies view detailed dashboards with customer feedback that can be sorted based on location or even based on employee. The business side of the application runs on a freemium model, with businesses able to use it without paying for it for up to three locations. But if they want to use the messaging function or see analytics for four or more locations, they must pay $99 per month for each.

While Tello for Business could open up a whole new revenue stream, it is also a good way of driving customer acquisition for the ratings app. The startup is betting on businesses using the tool to promote use of the mobile app and drive customer feedback in their retail locations.

Along with the new product, Tello is also announcing it has raised a $2.7 million round of financing led by True Ventures (see disclosure) and Bullpen Capital. Other investors in the company include 500 Startups, Felicis Ventures, Forerunner Ventures, Founder Collective, Lowercase Capital, Mark Goines, Naval Ravikant, Russ Siegelman, Shervin Pishevar, SV Angel, Tim Donmoyer and Transmedia Capital.

Disclosure: True Ventures is an investor in the parent company of this blog, Giga Omni Media. Om Malik, the founder of Giga Omni Media, is also a venture partner at True.