|We're a small startup that launched the beta version of our app at Stanford University 10 days ago (www.shoutt.me). Shoutt is a location-based information sharing platform...and thus, a social network of sorts. We decided to launch at Stanford due to various reasons like proximity to us, % of iPhone users, etc. We do plan to launch at more schools next semester, but right now we're stuck!|
Being a social network, we face the classic chicken-and-egg problem. To overcome that and get users on board we did this:
1. Have a very niche launch (Stanford)
2. Run a competition where we give out a great prize every day for 30 days to the most active/creative user that day
3. We distributed over 1500 flyers across dorms announcing Shoutt & the competition. You can see them here (http://shoutt.me/Marketing/)
4. Posted on student mailing lists about Shoutt and how it is useful
5. Emailed several student organizations about using Shoutt in a way to best benefit them as a group
6. Hired 3 undergrad students to help spread the word
What we are seeing right now is:
1. Users are trickling in, growth is stagnant and not upwards
2. We do have a couple of evangelical users, but not many
3. After speaking with many students - we've realized that most are aware about the existance of Shoutt due to our initial push, but it iss passive knowledge. There hasn't been much conversion from knowing to downloading.
It has been just 10 days, so it is still early...but we're not seeing as much traction as we'd like so we're starting to get worried. I was wondering if any of you had experience or tips to offer. Thanks guys!
What Shoutt does & how it is helpful:
Shoutt is a location-based app to share information with those around you. We're bringing the act of shoutting to the phone - when you shout only the people around you can hear you. This works as a great way to share information with students around you and thus helps connect hyperlocal communities. It can be used to connect places as small as a dorm or a department to as large as the entire campus/city - the distance is decided by the shoutter. Also, unlike other networks there are no friends or followers and is focused primarily on the shared information.
Shoutt can be applied to a wide range of scenarios -- Announcements (events, publicize, news), Collaboration (homework, study groups, hobbies), Marketplace (buy/sell, recruiting for orgs, help), Random chatter (updates, celebrating Cardinal victories) and Asks (ride shares, Freshmen questions).