Houseparty: “Who’s up for a virtual happy hour?”

The Drum 31 Mar 2020 09:15
By Harry Clark-31 March 2020 10:15am

The marketing sector can be a complicated place as new marketing tools and techniques are launched, almost on a weekly basis. Powered by The Drum Network, this regular column invites The Drum Network's members to demystify the marketing trade and offer expert insight and opinion on what is happening in the marketing industry today that can help your business tomorrow.

Wilderness explain the hype between social isolation app of choice, Houseparty.

So, house parties are suddenly the new norm.

Launched in the second half of 2016, Houseparty was made by the same team behind Meerkat. The live-streaming app gained a tiny bit of momentum in 2015 but then lost out to its direct competitor, Periscope. It’s now owned by Fortnite developer Epic Games, who bought it in 2019.

Less than two weeks ago, it was the 1,450th most popular app on the App Store in India. Currently, it sits at first. On Google Play, it's currently trending at #1. In the UK, it's now ahead of Zoom as the most popular app.

“They've managed to create a really frictionless, boundaryless intimacy, which feels about as close to real life as it can be,” says Lore Oxford, global head of culture at We Are Social.

Its CEO, Sima Sistani, touted it as the “next best thing to hanging out in real life” - but it is literally thanks to the pandemic that its declining downloads have picked up so significantly.

Alessio Esposito, partnerships director at Social Chain predicts “a huge drop in new users and daily active users” once social isolation is over. People will be valuing real-life interactions more than ever and won’t need to rely on technology to have them. Houseparty will need to prove themselves a worthwhile app - and one way to do that would be to shift their marketing and social focus once everything dies down.

Currently, these group social experiences that Houseparty enables are essential for maintaining mental health and keeping a positive outlook. For now at least, Houseparty gives people a reason to groom themselves, look presentable every day, to see and have fun with their friends, and maintain a crucial semblance of normalcy during this difficult time. If nothing else, it gives me a reason to actually brush my hair.

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FortniteHousepartyLore OxfordWe Are SocialSima Sistani
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