Charmin, the Procter & Gamble toilet paper brand, updated its SitOrSquat mobile app that helps people find clean restrooms based on user-generated ratings and reviews. The new version of the app has a searchable database of more than 100,000 public bathrooms, according to a company press release.
SitOrSquat lets users share photos as part of their reviews. The app added a new mapping and clustering feature to help users locate convenient bathrooms based on where they are.
The app is available for free to download on Apple's App Store and at Google Play for Android devices.
While there are many bathroom-finder apps in the Google Play store and Apple's App Store, Charmin's SitOrSquat is notable for being operated by a major consumer brand. Encouraging smartphone users to share their reviews and photos of public restrooms adds a social element to the app that keeps people engaged through user-generated content, taking a page from similar, non-bathroom oriented services like Yelp.
Charmin has been very active with clever promotions that reach consumers outside of the home. In June, the P&G arm launched a limited promotion featuring a mobile on-demand bathroom service called "Van-GO." The initiative brought a bathroom-equipped van to New Yorkers in need of facilities who requested service via a dedicated web link. "Black-ish" star Anthony Anderson provided some comic relief during the promotion by going along for the ride.
The SitOrSquat app and Van-GO promotions are in keeping with Charmin's cheeky messaging. Both recent promotions have an element where they connect with consumers in the real world, which may help the brand drive user engagement. P&G, Charmin's parent company, has recently indicated that its long-term plans include a shift away from digital marketing to more traditional channels. Where efforts such as the SitOrSquat app — which provides practical value on top of being clever — will fall under those priorities is unclear.