Last week, Korean chat app, Kakao Talk, rolled out Plus Friend Home to connect users with their favorite brands.
KaKao Talk is a popular cross platform messaging app in Korea. This app is not just a messaging platform. It allow users to download games, has its own ad platform and their version of brand pages – Plus Friend Home.
Plus Friend Home (originally called Plus Friend) was launched in October 2011 as a way of helping users follow and interact with their favorite brands, celebrities and media companies. The upgraded version, that was launched this week, points to a larger shift towards e-commerce and business-targeted user engagement features.
Each Plus Friend profile has a ‘mini profile’, ‘chatting room’ and ‘brand home’. They are are customizable for brands using a ‘Home Editor’ toolset. Kakao says it will also allow brands to preset FAQ answers when users ‘chat’ with them in the ‘chatting room’.
Earlier this month, KaKao Talk made a partnership with Evernote where users can save messages in the cloud.
Kakao now has over 400 partners operating through the Plus Friend service. Kakao Talk users seem to be taking to it too, with more than 26 million active users following 100 million Plus Friend accounts.
Via: The Next Web
Why I’m curious:
While Facebook is finally focusing on its mobile platform, Kakao has built is app into an extensive mobile ecosystem. Unlike any other messenger app, KaKao is focusing on connecting businesses to consumers. There’s no concrete information on whether KaKao is charging brands to build Plus Friend Home pages. But KaKao’s strategy to focus on brands and utilize its platform as a marketing tool (other than ads) is innovative compared to its competitors like WeChat, WhatsApp and Kik. The app is even preparing to launch its own Facebook Home rival later in the year.
Why are messenger apps more popular in Asia than they are in America? Will KaKao or an equivalent of the app gain popularity in American and take off? Will we be making brand pages in messenger apps in the near future?