After pulling through the sudden spike in new signups following the ban on TikTok, the Indian social media platforms like Chingari, Trell, Roposo and Mitron now face the challenge of making new users stay. A recent report by KalaGato claims that the engagement level of these platforms is lower compared to TikTok. Some TikTok creators have also not been satisfied with the user experience of these apps.
Fully aware that these issues can drive away many users, most of these Indian apps have started work on enhancing user experience, improving engagement levels and building an ecosystem of loyal creator base.
Though getting more likes is an incentive in itself for any creator, some of these Indian social media apps are trying to build engagement through online competitions. Chingari has announced a talent hunt show which can help top content creators earn up to ₹1 crore from a prize pool of ₹2.8 crore. To drive engagement at state levels, the competition will also identify and awards top creators ₹5 lakh. Winners will be decided based on the votes given by Chingari users.
Sumit Ghosh, co-founder, Chingari points out, the competition is aimed at promoting desi (homegrown) talents and helping them fulfil their dream of becoming famous and rich. We are confident that people in large numbers will join Chingari to showcase their talent.
On the same note, Roposo is working on holding 100 online competitions with prize money for creators this year. Around 10 of these competitions will be at national level and will involve big brand endorsements.
In addition to driving up engagement through competition and large cash prizes, platforms like Roposo are also providing incentives to creators on a daily basis by rewarding them for bagging more views.
“Unlike others we don’t discriminate between big and small creators. We have built a distributed algorithm that isn’t biased towards big creators. We also provide creators equal opportunities to earn in-app coins for creating viral content,” said Mayank Bhangadia, founder, Roposo and VP, Glance.
So, if a video gets certain number of views on Roposo, the creator gets proportional number of coins. Users can cash out the coins and transfer to a mobile wallet. For 100,000 coins in the app users can get up to ₹100. Currently, it works with Paytm, but Roposo is working on integrating with more wallets.
Indian social media apps are also expanding the features available to users to drive up engagement.
Trell, for instance, is soon going to add new features like ‘Live Talk show hosting’ and ‘Reaction Video maker’ to help creators make more engaging content and get more views. “I think the ecosystem is in the very early days and has incredible potential to foster one of the most prominent social media companies originated from India. The Chinese apps did not build themselves overnight either,” said Pulkit Agarwal, co-founder, Trell.
Roposo on its part has added a feature called Mix & Match which allows two people from different locations to share space in the same video. According to Bhangadia, the feature has been getting tremendous response from the community.
Mitron too is working on building engagement with various upcoming n-app engagement campaigns and product features.
Experts believe engagement and brand doesn’t build overnight and may even take years to reach the levels of TikTok. “Engagement is a very slow game. It can take 2 to 3 years to build. The amount of engagement TikTok had none of these apps have. Despite all the features and competitions these apps will have to wait. It is also about brand building and they will need time for it,” said Harish Bijoor, brand strategy specialist.
Bijoor feels, all these social media apps are replacement apps as people are looking for the alternative to TikTok. That discovery journey will take time and eventually only one or two of these apps will float and the rest will disappear.