By now, at least if you use social media for business or are just plain obsessed with anything social media related,  you will have heard about the new live streaming app that is Meerkat. To say this is one of the most exciting apps of the year, by my prediction anyway, is an understatement.

Since its increased use after the annual #SXSW it has sparked a tonne of questions around how people will use this live streaming app, how it will compete with twitters proposed live streaming function, whether it is just another craze or if it will actually be here to stay.

After just jumping on board with the app and watching quite a few live streams so far, I felt compelled to share my thoughts about the new app taking social media by storm.

The app, with its bright, bold and catchy yellow branding, not indifferent to that of my current favourite social media tool snapchat, is definitely a standout when launched from the iPhone. There is no release yet for Android users but with the traction built so far I have little doubt that the app will certainly find its way to their app store. According to a recent video interview by Gary Vaynerchuck and Israeli born Meerkat founder Ben Rubin, the colours were chosen completely independent of snapchats colour scheme and are based more on the heritage of Rubin himself. None-the-less, it’s hard to miss.

It’s a s#@t load of fun! There is little doubt that this app will become very addictive, very quickly, with great viral capability. Conversations within the live stream are intertwined within a string of tweets, with the parent tweet having the  hashtag #meerkat demonstrating trending power at its finest.

There have been talks that this app should become an independent platform within its own right, largely because of suggestions that Twitter may not be so supportive of Meerkats use of twitters social graph. Essentially users login with their twitter credentials and all their twitter followers become followers of their Meerkat account, assuming of course they too have the app. In light of Twitters Periscope acquisition, this could pose a challenge for Rubin’s company, however, with his track record of overcoming adversity within the start up scene and his brilliant ability to learn lessons, a skill all entrepreneurs need, I have a feeling he’ll find solutions based alternatives should any challenge arise.

The score system with the app doesn’t help but pluck at the competitive strings within any high achiever that uses the app. Seeing the score of Meerkaters’ on a leaderboard, allowing you to follow them with a simple tap only encourages people to use the app even more. According to an article on Mashable.com;

Time spent on Meerkat and number of viewers appear to be factors in the score.

Here are my top reasons why you should be on Meerkat;

  • It’s power for generating conversations around topics is huge. As far as brand use, in my opinion, is unmatched since the launch of Twitter itself. Combing these two together on one platform allows brands to have fans and followers in continuous online conversations more than anytime before. I was watching keynotes from the #SXSW held in Austin from the comfort of my lounge room live in Sydney, Australia while participating in conversations in real-time on the same screen. Think live fashion shows, product launches, business announcements, sports events. If you have a brand or business you need to be on meerkat and start generating conversations.
  • It provides access to you as the person behind the brand, live and raw at anytime while giving you a direct line of communication with the end user at the same time, in real-time. Think AMA’s on reddit but with live video combined with tweets for example. Get my drift?
  • It is portable live video at its finest. As long as you have an internet connection and an iPhone (at this stage) you can set up a live stream to an almost endless number of viewers. Webinars redefined I’d say. Year of the webinar in 2014/2015. Year of live streaming 2015/2106?

I could go on. But I’d be writing all day. Catch me on Meerkat @ivansiladji. I have already started taking the necessary steps to incorporate this app within my content generation strategy and I think it’s going to be a whole lot of fun and increase exposure ten fold. More on that to come.

Have you downloaded it? What are your predictions for the Meerkat app? Leave me comment.

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Image linked courtesy of techcrunch.com.

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