Snapchat is the famous start-up that conquered the majority of young smartphone users, both in Western Europe and in the USA, and is now entering the Eastern markets at a fulminant pace. It is also the start-up that refused to be bought by Facebook, in 2013, for no less than 3 billion dollars. Actually, in 2015, Snapchat is said to value over 11 billion dollars and everyone in the IT industry is now eager to see what will come next: a colossal decline or the rise of a new social network?
Sursa foto: Snapchat
How Snapchat works
Despite not being very popular in Romania, Snapchat has over 100 billion users in the entire world. In fact, more than 60% of smartphone users in the USA, aged between 13 and 34 years old, have installed Snapchat on their phones. But how does it work, actually? You enter the application, take a picture or record a short video, then you set a timer (let’s say, 10 seconds) and choose from your list of friends the people you want to send your picture/video to. They receive it as a notification, click on it, watch it for less than 10 seconds and then it disappears.
Why it’s so popular
Nowadays, all social platforms rely on the fact that their content is never deleted – unless the user does it, and then it’s still questionable if it has been deleted or not. However, the content, be it photos, written posts or shared videos, usually remains in an archive, for anyone to access it at any point. Even though this seemed to be a positive feature, more and more users are getting interested in a new type of content, that only appears for a couple of seconds and is deleted immediately after being watched. Young users like it because they can express themselves, they feel at liberty to share any kind of content and they are less worried about other people’s feedback. Users can also send fleeting chat messages and white a short text on the videos and pictures they send.
Why it’s so valuable
Mobile and technology professionals are arguing whether Snapchat’s worth is, indeed, almost 12 billion dollars, since the company didn’t make profit yet. However, the answer lies in the fact that Snapchat succeeded to gather a great number of users. In fact, the mobile app already set partnerships with various press institutions that are sharing media content on Snapchat, but also with other companies, for customized selfies. Even so, many brands still remain skeptical and are waiting to see the further evolution of Snapchat.
One thing to learn from this start-up story is that, in order to be great in business, you have to be able to take risks and trust your intuition. Just like Evan Spiegel did, when he presented Snapchat to his colleagues, back in 2011, and they didn’t like it – but he still launched the start-up and (guess what?) it became a worldwide phenomenon.