Where did the idea for the new CRYSTALYX supplementation app come from? What makes the app different from the website? Mark Robbins discusses all this and explains why producers and CRYSTALYX dealers should download the new app today!
Tom: We're here today with Mark Robbins, Director of Research and Nutrition with CRYSTALYX® Brand Supplements, to talk about an exciting new digital app available to our audience. Welcome back, Mark.
Mark: Thanks, Tom. I’m glad to be here.
Tom: And so, tell us about this new CRYSTALYX app and where the idea came from.
Mark: Sure. You know, we have two other apps already – we've got a CRYSTALYX Body Condition Score app that's been around for several years, we’ve got another app that calculates intake and you know, aside from this it just seems like there's an app for everything anymore. We print a printed version of our CRYSTALYX supplementation guide. It’s very extensive and over time — as you add or subtract products — that becomes out of date and then you need to reprint it and just keeping up with that, there’s a certain amount of dollars involved. The idea of app that can be updated basically on a daily basis as needed was really attractive to us for that reason. Most apps people like them because they’re readily available and you got them with you all the time. For this app, we’re gonna capitalize on the same idea. In this app, there is a label — or information that's on a label — of every CRYSTALYX product. And that's on the phone that you're carrying around in your pocket. That looked very attractive to us and the fact that you can update it rather frequently. In addition to the product information, there are some other features as well. It's got three different calculators that will help you with real world scenarios. You can calculate your intake of your product, you can calculate the amount of product that you need to purchase and you can also setup reminders as to when your product will run out in different pastures with different sets of cattle. There's a dealer locator that works with or without cellphone service. So, even if you're in an area where you don't have cell service, this app still works and the dealer locator will even work without that service. And then there's information in there on the different types of forages and additives that we need to talk about in order to pick the correct product for you.
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Tom: It sounds like you all found a really good app developer there. We've talked before, Mark, about the current CRYSTALYX website and all the information and resources available there. So, what makes the app different from the website?
Mark: For me— and I've been testing it and developing it here for a couple of weeks— it's quicker than going to the website and searching there. You just pick up your phone, you go to the app and you can find products much quicker. Another thing, you know, it's always with you. You can access the website over your phone and the website is phone-friendly, but for me it's just quicker to access there. And like I said, you basically have all that labeled information on your phone even if you haven't got cellphone service. If you don't have cell service, you can’t access the internet. With the app, it's always there. Now, that app does update or refresh itself when you do get back in the cellphone service and you open it up again, but it's just really quite a bit handier for me to access it through the app than to go to a website.
Tom: Okay. Let’s look at its practical “in the moment” application. Tell us more about how this app will help livestock producers and why they should download and use it.
Mark: So, the different features that we have, they’re really intended to help livestock producers are; first of all, it allows you to pick the correct product out of an array of over 70 CRYSTALYX products that are out there. And that was really the focus of the printed app — the supplementation guide that we have — how do you distill down from 70 some CRYSTALYX products to the 1, or 2, or 3 that I'm really looking for for my cattle in this situation. And we did that in the printed guide with a series of questions. 4 questions that you answer with beef cattle will get you down to just a very small number of products. We do that in the app as well. And you know, you can answer those questions or you can kind of skip through some if you're trying to get a larger number of products to show up, but it really does help people find the right product out of a list of many products.
And that was a major complaint that we had from our dealers and customers is “where do I start when you have so many different products for many different applications?” Now, it also allows you to compare products side by side. There's a feature where you can go in and you can select 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 products and it will then show you the nutrient composition of those products in a table side by side so you can see where there are similarities and differences between products. And again, that's all user defined on which products you want to sort side by side. And then course then you can erase those and go back and pick different products as well.
So, the next thing are these three different calculators that we have on. So, an intake calculator is very handy in that you can tell it when you put out your supplement barrels, you can tell it what day you looked at them and decided that, yeah, they're about half gone, and you put in the number of head in the pasture and it will tell you what that intake is. It will do the math for you. The other nice feature is it will also tell your right there when you're probably going to run out of supplement at that rate of the intake in that pasture, you know, if they're half gone or three-quarters gone. It will predict when it's going to be 100% gone. And that’s something we talk with customers a lot when they're talking about “is the intake too much, too little?” Do the math. Make sure you account for the bulls in the pasture, you know, not just the mature cows, things like that. And this takes some of the guess work out.
The second calculator is the purchase calculator. This one's fairly simple in that you tell it how many head you’re going to have and how many days you want to feed them CRYSTALYX and then you put in the intake. Now, it’s hard-coded with some average intake for all the products. So if you select the product, it will figure the intake or you can put in an intake of your own if you feel that they eat more or less — different from what our average intakes are. I mean our average intakes are generally three-quarters of a pound for protein products and a quarter of a pound on mineral products. And then after you do that, you hit the calculate button. It will tell me how many tons of the product you will need for that feeding period and that number of animals.
The third calculator is intended to keep you from running out of CRYSTALYX in different pastures that you may have. You know, we're all pretty busy. We’ve got a lot of things going on. Depending on how often you check the cattle and the barrels, you may miss a step or two here or there where you go a day or two without supplement. We really don't want that to happen. So, what this feature allows you to do is to put in the number of head in the pasture, you can put some descriptive things in about the pasture and about the cattle, you put the day in that you put the supplement out, how much supplement you did put out, how many barrels and how much they weigh, and then it will predict based on those intakes. Again, you can use the average intake or you can enter your own intake. It will predict when that pasture will need to be resupplied with supplement and you can setup a reminder then to be either sent to your phone or emailed to your email address. And you can also choose how many days ahead of that day that you're going to run out you get that reminder. So, you can say, “hey, four days before I'm going to run out, I want to get an email that says I need to get more CRYSTALYX® out to this pasture.”
So, those three tools are pretty handy for that. Like I said as well, there's a feature in there that allows you to find dealers. And you know, some people, they may know where a dealer is. New customers may not and/or they may have a dealer that for some reason they need to find a second dealer if they've got a pasture or they’re running a pasture that’s some distance away. Maybe somebody's closer to that one. So, that one works very well just based on your zip code.
It also explains the different additives that we have available in different CRYSTALYX products. So, you can understand what they're intended for and how they are used if you're not familiar with all of the different additives that we have available.
Tom: In retrospect, if you think back 10 years, could you have imagined having that kind of technology at your fingertips?
Mark: No. You know, there was a time we used to put all of this in a 3-ringed binder. And you gave that to dealers. You certainly didn't give it to every customer out there. And now, we have a tool that has much more versatility than that old 3-ringed binder, more information, it’s updated at a moment's notice. And basically, every CRYSTALYX customer could have that, like you say, right at their fingertips every day.
Tom: Well, I do remember CRYSTALYX has a printed supplementation guide that you use with dealers and livestock producers. It has a lot of good nutritional information about CRYSTALYX products. So, do you envision that this new app will replace the printed supplementation guide?
Mark: I think that's very possible over time. You know, it's not our intent today to stop printing that printed supplementation guide. I mean there’s a lot of people that still like to have that on a counter or something — and in some respects, that might be a little quicker than the app — but the nice thing about the app is it's always updated. It pulls the information from the website. So, if we update something on the website today, then that's going to be updated on the app almost in real time. The next time a person is using, that app and opens it up it will connect through cell service and an update itself.
Tom: Is this new app available to anybody or is it primarily for CRYSTALYX dealers? And also, is it limited to customers in the United States or available all over the place?
Mark: It's available to anyone. You know, it will be particularly useful for dealers and salesmen. But the same information that they're looking to talk about or explain to customers, customers can access that themselves. So, it's available to anyone. When you download the app, it’s available in a US version or a Canadian version. That’s major countries that we’re selling CRYSTALYX in. And so, there is a nice option there and you can toggle between that in the settings if you need to. But when you first install the app, it will ask if you want to set it up for the US or for Canada.
Tom: Where can customers go to find this app to download it and what platforms is it available on?
Mark: So, it's available for both Apple iPhones and android devices. So, you go to the Apple store, the android marketplace and do a search for “crystalyx” and then it will bring it up. I’ll say this — when I did a search for “crystalyx” in the Apple store, it didn't recognize that. And it did a search for “crystallize” and I noticed that at the top — it had a hot button there — it said, “Do you want to search for Crystalyx?” And then I had to hit that one and it did search for “crystalyx” and our existing two apps came up. So now, when you search for “crystalyx” and it really does look for the word “crystalyx”, you'll get three different applications that show up there.
Tom: Okay. Good to know. Amazing times we live in. Mark Robbins, Director of Research and Nutrition with CRYSTALYX Brand Supplements. Thank you so much, Mark.
Mark: Thanks for having us, Tom.
Tom: I'm Tom Martin and we thank you for listening