It's been a very busy and productive year for TAP with many milestones, both in what we deliver and how we deliver it. We joined the Impact Accelerator Program which is an impact-focused accelerator for high-potential UK startups with a mission to use their business as a force for good; a mission which is at the heart of everything that TAP does.
Through the accelerator, purpose-driven founders get access to mentorship, premium software tools, and hands-on support to help catapult their vision into reality. We gained a huge amount of knowledge over a 4-month period including how, as a social enterprise, we could put in place a more sustainable revenue model.
In the summer we partnered again with the National Thank You Day and this year the theme focussed on the important role that gratitude and music play in the lives of those living with dementia. Simon, our content producer of blogs, podcasts and radio shows, had the honour of interviewing Tony Christie for a special podcast Simon made to support Thanking Day. Tony Christie has been diagnosed with the early stages of dementia and wanted to raise awareness of the valuable role that music and gratitude can play.
Gratitude and music fulfil a similar role. When we listen to music we connect to particular moments in time, it evokes particular emotions that we felt at a particular moment in time. And the same thing happens with gratitude; we bookmark a moment in time, a time when we needed the help of another and when they acted kindly, we rewarded that kindness with gratitude.
Tony Christie rerecorded the Andrew Gold classic 'Thank You for Being a Friend' and this became the theme song this year's Thank You Day campaign. It made us realise how through practices of gratitude we can build up a bank of gratitude, which can then be used to help protect us from the effects of dementia later in life. Prevention is always better than a cure!
Also, this summer we signed an important agreement with Greener Games to become the exclusive distributor for their Nature Treks VR Application, which offers a choice of 15 fully immersive relaxing environments so that TAP users can get a 10-minute relaxing break from the comfort of the staff room. We have two clients already signed up for the new TAP VR service and many more plans in place for next year.
Practicing wellbeing is all about remaining in the present moment, clearing our minds from depression-inducing clutter of the past and the anxiety of the future. Meditation is all about clearing the mind and getting close to nature and reflecting on everything we have to be grateful for is a great way to do this.
Even if it's only for a few minutes, we can immerse ourselves in a VR environment and reground ourselves and not focus on all the negatives that surround us, just as when we express gratitude it puts us into a positive headspace which is clearly good for our mental health.
There's been a massive amount of development work carried out this year and we have brand new versions of the TAP App, OnTAP (the system which sits behind our TAP platform), a new Map of Thanks and our tech stack being swapped to a new cloud services provider that is more effective, faster and more cost efficient!
It is our feeling that people are generally grateful, but they lack the apparatus to express gratitude. People generally want to show appreciation for the kindness of others, but they need to be shown how to thank, and need to be reminded to express gratitude.
The in-app notifications on the new version of the TAP App not only serve as a reminder to thank others but will give people examples of how to thank. This will hopefully inspire the receivers of these notifications to thank more often. It will also give TAP users a 'behind the scenes' look at the organisations and individuals that they follow. This will allow them to see the extent of all the kindness that these wonderful individuals and organisations provide.
As TAP continues to grow, it is only natural that the TAP family grows too. Our team has grown over the year and we now have three new team members supporting our business growth. Their focus is to generate a sustainable revenue from our thousands of existing users and the many new organisations that we are talking to. By keeping our pricing low and going for large scale, we can make TAP available for all.
We've reached over 555,000 people this year via social media and digital marketing and now on average have 42,000 thousand active users per month and have had over 1,800 App downloads. We have been included in multiple community radio shows, local radio shows, B2B magazines and web sites and have attended or presented at multiple events such as Care Week, the Bett Education Show and the FAB NHS awards to name but a few.
TAP continues to grow as an organisation, onboard new organisations and grow globally and I hope you can continue to support us by downloading our wonderful TAP App and send your own messages of thanks. While you are thanking, take advantage and enjoy some of the awesome wellbeing content as a podcast, article or even video.
I am so proud of my team's achievements and just reading some of those messages of thanks on our thanking platform daily makes us realise the power and potential of our platform.
Expressing gratitude is a form of therapy, it is obviously of benefit to the recipient of the gratitude; it validates their kind actions and spurs them on to be even kinder in the future. It is also good for our own mental health as it fires up the prosocial, neural transmitters which takes us far beyond the primal defence mechanisms of fight, flight or freeze. Gratitude is the gift that keeps on giving. Not only will it make us kinder when we receive gratitude, it will also make us more likely to express gratitude ourselves.
Merry Christmas everyone and here's to a wonderful New Year! Let's thank even more in 2024!
P.S. Get in the festive mood with our Christmas podcast: Stream Christmas podcast 2023 by TAP - Thank And Praise | Listen online for free on SoundCloud
Matt (on behalf of the whole TAP team!)