100 Disruptive Brands 2017

Disruptive Brands

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2016

Blab

Building on the popularity of live-streaming from apps such as Periscope and Meerkat, US company Blab allows groups of friends in different locations to have live video conversations, do interviews and even watch other people’s conversations.

Its co-founder, Michael Birch, created Bebo and sold it to AOL for $850m (£588.4m) in 2008 before buying it back for $1m (£690,000) in 2013. Blab, a spin-off of the brand, was established in 2015.

Chief executive Shaan Puri claims the average time spent per session is 64 minutes – impressive in an age of shortening attention spans. An article in Ad Age describes Blab as “the hot new app for marketers”, as brands can create live ‘Blab shows’ that encourage participation from users.

T-Mobile and Al Jazeera have already experimented with it. Blab has no business model as such so far, but once the app has built its audience, it will become attractive to marketers wanting to reach engaged users or get instant feedback on marketing campaigns.

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