With new app Kwickie, celebrities and fans strike better connection

If you’ve been vying for the attention of your favourite celebrity with little luck, a new app on the social-media block will make your voice heard rather quickly. Kwickie, a new video-sharing application developed this year by Australian social entrepreneur Jacob Gough, is gaining momentum in the United States and United Kingdom for connecting celebrities […]

If you’ve been vying for the attention of your favourite celebrity with little luck, a new app on the social-media block will make your voice heard rather quickly.

Kwickie, a new video-sharing application developed this year by Australian social entrepreneur Jacob Gough, is gaining momentum in the United States and United Kingdom for connecting celebrities and fans for question and answer sessions.

Having amassed more than 100,000 users within a few months, the creators are scouting the Middle East for social- media influencers to capitalise on the app’s video streaming capabilities and real-time fan interaction. “Kwickie is unique in a way that we have merged video and social-media elements to create a live experience,” says Mahmoud Fahour, the chief executive of Kwickie, who will be overseeing the opening of an office in Dubai later in the year.

“Users have the ability to receive a video from a fan, friends or family. What the app does is that it records the audio and visual of you reacting to that video message, which makes it priceless. No other platform has that capability.” Other live streaming apps only offer a one-way conversation at the moment, according to Fahour. “So if you take Facebook Live, YouTube or Snapchat, they don’t allow you to feel like this celebrity is talking to you and commenting on your specific questions. That’s what sets us apart.”

A steady legion of celebrities have joined Kwickie to expand their social-media footprint. The platform has attracted sports personalities such as American basketball player J R Smith, social-media influencer Emily Skye, and even Australia’s opposition leader Bill Shorten as part of his latest campaign.

The Kwickie team are in discussions with radio star Kris Fade to be the UAE’s first brand ambassador. Don’t worry, the non-VIP set and work places can also benefit from the app.

“Our data shows that the app is also very popular with families and friends who want to send personal messages,” he says. “We also have businesses that are using it internally as a communication platform. Basically, we are bringing back the face-to- face interacting which has been missing on the other platforms.” With such a wide audience to target, why choose a rather risqué name?

“It’s like Richard Branson and the Virgin brand,” says Fahour. “Kwickie is a play on words because it allows you to have a quick video chat.”

After signing up to the app, users can record a short video message to send to a contact, either as a private message or promote them on various social-media accounts. After the video has been received and responded to, it can be shared with followers. People will also have access to a dashboard based on who they follow and preferences. They can explore celebrity sessions promoted by the Kwickie team, and join them by recording their questions. If the celebrity responds to the video, it goes live on the app.

“Celebrities have a much better chance to engage with fans on our platform,” says Fahour. “So if Emily Skye announces that she is happy to take questions from followers, we promote that video and invite users to send in their videos for her.”

With all that social-media interaction, Fahour says filters have been added to the app to protect the celebrities from trolls and inappropriate content. “We protect the celebrities and brands. So we create a console that brings together all the video requests that come in for the celebrity and they get to pick and choose which ones to respond to. They can elect to ignore messages.”

Kwickie can be download for free from Apple and Android stores. To find out more, visit kwickie.com

aahmed@thenational.ae

Source: art & life

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