Michael Heyward is #10 on Fast Company’s list of the ‘100 Most Creative People in Business 2014.’ Heyward is the Founder and CEO of Whisper, an app and website that allows users to write a short message on top of a selected image, which can then be shared anonymously. The messages are essentially easy-to-create memes, but the messages are subjective and personal, and users can receive feedback – also anonymous – on their notes.
According to Fast Company, Whisper has “millions of users each averaging 30 minutes a day on the platform, fluttering through a whopping 3.5 billion page views per month.”
Whisper has largely remained untouched by brands, but in March, Digiday reported on two initiatives by Universal Studios and Hulu on the platform:
Universal Studios used Whisper to market the Valentine’s Day release of its film “Endless Love” and streaming video platform Hulu is currently using it to market its forthcoming original series “Deadbeat.” Surprisingly, the ads haven’t elicited a backlash among Whisper users, Whisper’s svp of business development Michael Downey said.
This week, NBC has been using Whisper to promote ‘Rosemary’s Baby,’ the two-part mini-series which premiered Sunday night and which concludes tonight at 9pm EST. NBC will post a total of 10 photos (three of which are being released exclusively on Whisper) on the platform telling Rosemary Woodhouse’s story from her point of view. NBC then plans on sharing the content posted to Whisper across its other social channels.
For networks, organic exposure on Facebook and Twitter are becoming more difficult. For those savvy enough, Snapchat and Instagram have become easier mediums through which to reach engaged users. As even more nascent social platforms with big followings – like Whisper – emerge, networks should seek every opportunity to capitalize on them before before being pushed towards paid solutions. More than half of Whisper users are under 25, and 70% are women. These numbers should have networks and advertisers alike salivating at the potential, and we are excited to see how brands use the platform moving forward.
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