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Design Learnings from Viral Applications April 2008
Who is RockYou? Over 50 Applications and Widgets
<ul><li>“ To engage the world through social applications”  </li></ul>The RockYou Mission
Stats! <ul><li>Invented the Space </li></ul><ul><li>Double Digit  penetration across leading social networks  (MySpace, Fa...
Agenda <ul><li>The Social Space </li></ul><ul><li>Product Design </li></ul><ul><li>Development Phasing </li></ul><ul><li>T...
The Opportunity
Market for Social Apps is Exploding Wikipedia.org Alexa Global Traffic Rankings 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2005 (U.K.) 2008 1 2 ...
Social Applications Increase Site Traffic Over 150%  Growth! <ul><li>Over 18,000 applications </li></ul><ul><li>95% have a...
<ul><li>Source:  eBay Investor Presentation, RockYou </li></ul><ul><li>eBay starts Q2 98, PayPal starts Q1’00, Yahoo! star...
How did we grow so fast? <ul><li>Rise of open platforms  +  laser-like focus on metrics and viral channels </li></ul>Flash...
Product Design
RockYou approach to product design <ul><li>Apply advertising principles to user-facing web design </li></ul><ul><li>Build ...
Apply advertising principles to user-facing web design <ul><li>Its all about Conversion Rate </li></ul><ul><li>Each touch ...
Build fast and launch asap <ul><li>Design simple concepts </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on virality and growth </li></ul><ul><li...
Iterate Rapidly <ul><li>Viral channels should drive product concept and feature development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Not the ...
Let data guide product decisions <ul><li>Don’t Be Emotional </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Numbers don’t lie </li></ul></ul><ul><li...
Development Process
Development Process <ul><li>Marketing / Validation </li></ul><ul><li>Growth </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement </li></ul>
Application Types <ul><li>Channel </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Superwall, HugMe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul><ul><ul>...
Marketing / Validation <ul><li>Audience </li></ul><ul><li>Channels </li></ul><ul><li>Messaging </li></ul>
Audience Skew heavily to teen and young adult women—brand influencers
Audience <ul><li>What’s the total size of market </li></ul><ul><li>What percentage penetration is goal </li></ul><ul><ul><...
Messaging <ul><li>Develop your concept around high-converting calls to action </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Simplicity </li></ul><...
Channels <ul><li>Focus on 1 to 1 channels </li></ul><ul><li>Map out several different flows to test </li></ul><ul><ul><li>...
Viral Channels <ul><li>News Feed </li></ul><ul><li>Notifications </li></ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul><ul><li>Profile </li></...
Growth Phase <ul><li>Break viral barrier </li></ul><ul><li>Tune growth (Install vs uninstall) </li></ul><ul><li>Promote It...
The Viral Loop User Call to action to invite friends x = invited friends Accept? Yes y% = invite accept rate x * y > 1 giv...
Tune It <ul><li>Superwall Launched in 2 days tuned for 2 weeks </li></ul><ul><li>Preview page </li></ul><ul><li>Invite Mes...
Promote It <ul><li>You know the math works </li></ul><ul><li>All about throughput to multiply </li></ul><ul><li>Give it a ...
Engagement Phase <ul><li>Saturated social circles (audiences) </li></ul><ul><li>Critical mass makes features more useful <...
Critical Mass <ul><li>You’ve achieved your goal </li></ul><ul><li>Percentage of Social Circle supernodes </li></ul><ul><ul...
Channels <ul><li>Focus on 1-to-Many to get People Engaged </li></ul><ul><ul><li>News Feed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Profi...
Viral Tuning in Depth
Metrics for your viral loop User Call to action to invite friends x = invited friends Accept? Yes y% = invite accept rate ...
Hypothetical viral numbers <ul><li>Install flow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>x = 5 (friends invited on average) </li></ul></ul><u...
Combine multiple flows and channels <ul><li>Install flow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>x = 5  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>y = 10% <...
<ul><li>What to track </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Requests sent & request CTR </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Notifications sent & no...
Using metrics to drive product decisions <ul><li>A/B test entire user flows </li></ul><ul><li>A/B test calls to action </l...
Making the most of viral channels <ul><li>Graph and compare activity metrics over time to analyze trends </li></ul><ul><li...
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Design Learnings From Viral Applications Presentation

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Design Learnings From Viral Applications Presentation

  1. 1. Design Learnings from Viral Applications April 2008
  2. 2. Who is RockYou? Over 50 Applications and Widgets
  3. 3. <ul><li>“ To engage the world through social applications” </li></ul>The RockYou Mission
  4. 4. Stats! <ul><li>Invented the Space </li></ul><ul><li>Double Digit penetration across leading social networks (MySpace, Facebook, Bebo..) </li></ul><ul><li>105 Million Uniques </li></ul><ul><li>1.5 Billion Pageviews </li></ul><ul><li>150+Million Widget views a day </li></ul>
  5. 5. Agenda <ul><li>The Social Space </li></ul><ul><li>Product Design </li></ul><ul><li>Development Phasing </li></ul><ul><li>Tuning in Depth </li></ul><ul><li>Q&A </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Opportunity
  7. 7. Market for Social Apps is Exploding Wikipedia.org Alexa Global Traffic Rankings 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2005 (U.K.) 2008 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
  8. 8. Social Applications Increase Site Traffic Over 150% Growth! <ul><li>Over 18,000 applications </li></ul><ul><li>95% have an application </li></ul><ul><li>60%+ have a RockYou app </li></ul>RockYou Integration
  9. 9. <ul><li>Source: eBay Investor Presentation, RockYou </li></ul><ul><li>eBay starts Q2 98, PayPal starts Q1’00, Yahoo! starts Q1’95, AOL starts Q1’92, Facebook starts Q4’04, and RockYou Starts Q4’05 </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook data represents active users, which was disclosed on 12/05 and 12/06. Undisclosed active user data is extrapolated by applying an average active user penetration to global Unique Visitors (per comScore Media Metrix) </li></ul>(2) Registered Users (MM) Huge Growth Potential Facebook platform launch
  10. 10. How did we grow so fast? <ul><li>Rise of open platforms + laser-like focus on metrics and viral channels </li></ul>Flash Widget Era <ul><li>Profile </li></ul><ul><li>Bulletin </li></ul><ul><li>Profile </li></ul><ul><li>Requests </li></ul><ul><li>Notifications </li></ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul><ul><li>News Feed </li></ul><ul><li>Profile action </li></ul><ul><li>Profile </li></ul><ul><li>Messages </li></ul><ul><li>Notifications </li></ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul><ul><li>Activity stream </li></ul><ul><li>Home surface </li></ul>
  11. 11. Product Design
  12. 12. RockYou approach to product design <ul><li>Apply advertising principles to user-facing web design </li></ul><ul><li>Build fast and launch asap </li></ul><ul><li>Iterate on original design </li></ul><ul><li>Let data guide product decisions </li></ul>
  13. 13. Apply advertising principles to user-facing web design <ul><li>Its all about Conversion Rate </li></ul><ul><li>Each touch point equivalent to an ad pageview </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Profile Views </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Canvas Pages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Invites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Feeds </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Grow by increasing number of touch points and maximizing conversion on each touch point </li></ul><ul><li>Have a plan to maximize use of every channel </li></ul><ul><li>Must consider implications for long-term user experience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Don’t abuse the channels </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Build fast and launch asap <ul><li>Design simple concepts </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on virality and growth </li></ul><ul><li>Accept the fact that channels >> features </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Channels bring in new users and keep them coming back </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Only the top 0.1% of features can accomplish this alone </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Validate concepts quickly </li></ul><ul><ul><li>User tests </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Just launch it </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Iterate Rapidly <ul><li>Viral channels should drive product concept and feature development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Not the other way around! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tune the viral loop </li></ul><ul><li>A/B Test </li></ul><ul><li>Release Often </li></ul>
  16. 16. Let data guide product decisions <ul><li>Don’t Be Emotional </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Numbers don’t lie </li></ul></ul><ul><li>There are no user experts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>60% + female </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>15-25 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Do user studies when you don’t have web metrics </li></ul><ul><li>Viral channels should drive product concept and feature development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Not the other way around! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Have a plan to maximize use of every channel </li></ul>
  17. 17. Development Process
  18. 18. Development Process <ul><li>Marketing / Validation </li></ul><ul><li>Growth </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement </li></ul>
  19. 19. Application Types <ul><li>Channel </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Superwall, HugMe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Content </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Flixster, iLike, Watercooler </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Dating </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Likeness, Compare People </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Games </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Zombies, FluffFriends, SpeedRacer, Friends for Sale </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gifts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Grow-a-gift, Free Gifts, Boozemail </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Self Expression </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cities I’ve Visitied, Bumper Sticker </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Marketing / Validation <ul><li>Audience </li></ul><ul><li>Channels </li></ul><ul><li>Messaging </li></ul>
  21. 21. Audience Skew heavily to teen and young adult women—brand influencers
  22. 22. Audience <ul><li>What’s the total size of market </li></ul><ul><li>What percentage penetration is goal </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Whats possible virality of market? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Average number of friends </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Myspace vs Ning vs iGoogle </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Messaging <ul><li>Develop your concept around high-converting calls to action </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Simplicity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Universal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social persuasion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Novelty (art) </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. Channels <ul><li>Focus on 1 to 1 channels </li></ul><ul><li>Map out several different flows to test </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Install to invite to interacting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Install to interacting to invite </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Balance relevance to throughput </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Channel vs Content Applications </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Viral Channels <ul><li>News Feed </li></ul><ul><li>Notifications </li></ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul><ul><li>Profile </li></ul><ul><li>Invites </li></ul><ul><li>Non-user pages </li></ul><ul><li>Profile Action </li></ul>
  26. 26. Growth Phase <ul><li>Break viral barrier </li></ul><ul><li>Tune growth (Install vs uninstall) </li></ul><ul><li>Promote It </li></ul>
  27. 27. The Viral Loop User Call to action to invite friends x = invited friends Accept? Yes y% = invite accept rate x * y > 1 gives you viral growth!
  28. 28. Tune It <ul><li>Superwall Launched in 2 days tuned for 2 weeks </li></ul><ul><li>Preview page </li></ul><ul><li>Invite Messaging </li></ul><ul><li>Targeting </li></ul>
  29. 29. Promote It <ul><li>You know the math works </li></ul><ul><li>All about throughput to multiply </li></ul><ul><li>Give it a boost! </li></ul><ul><li>Ad Networks </li></ul>
  30. 30. Engagement Phase <ul><li>Saturated social circles (audiences) </li></ul><ul><li>Critical mass makes features more useful </li></ul><ul><li>Tune for experience </li></ul><ul><li>Build new features to keep users engaged and happy! </li></ul>
  31. 31. Critical Mass <ul><li>You’ve achieved your goal </li></ul><ul><li>Percentage of Social Circle supernodes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>40% Active </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>10 % of that </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>4% of Market </li></ul></ul>
  32. 32. Channels <ul><li>Focus on 1-to-Many to get People Engaged </li></ul><ul><ul><li>News Feed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Profile </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Notifications </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non User Pages </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Focus on 1-to-1 to re-engage current users </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Notifications </li></ul></ul>
  33. 33. Viral Tuning in Depth
  34. 34. Metrics for your viral loop User Call to action to invite friends x = invited friends Accept? Yes y% = invite accept rate x * y > 1 gives you viral growth!
  35. 35. Hypothetical viral numbers <ul><li>Install flow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>x = 5 (friends invited on average) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>y = 22% (acceptance rate for invites) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Viral factor = 5 * 0.22 = 1.1 VIRAL! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Engagement flow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Repeat users can generated additional virality! </li></ul></ul>
  36. 36. Combine multiple flows and channels <ul><li>Install flow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>x = 5 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>y = 10% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Viral factor = 5 * 0.1 = 0.5 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Engagement flow, request channel </li></ul><ul><ul><li>x = 3 (invites) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>y = 10% (acceptance rate for invites) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Viral factor = 3 * 0.1 = 0.3 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Engagement flow, notification channel </li></ul><ul><ul><li>x = 6 (notifications) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>y = 5% (acceptance rate for notifications) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Viral factor = 6 * 0.05 = 0.3 </li></ul></ul>0.5 + 0.3 + 0.3 = 1.1 VIRAL!
  37. 37. <ul><li>What to track </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Requests sent & request CTR </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Notifications sent & notification CTR </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Feed events & feed CTR </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Adds / removes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And everything else…platform tracking is not 100% reliable </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How to track </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… if you’re tight on resources (aren’t we all) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Paid or home grown if you’re serious about growing big </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Get stats in real time instead of waiting a day </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Store events that can’t be tied to a page (i.e. number of requests sent) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Slice and dice data however you want </li></ul></ul></ul>Tuning the viral loop – watch your metrics
  38. 38. Using metrics to drive product decisions <ul><li>A/B test entire user flows </li></ul><ul><li>A/B test calls to action </li></ul><ul><li>Base decisions off of statistically significant data </li></ul>Flow A Flow B A n new users B n new users X% user dropoff Y invites sent/user Z% invites accepted
  39. 39. Making the most of viral channels <ul><li>Graph and compare activity metrics over time to analyze trends </li></ul><ul><li>Focus resources on tuning the largest traffic drivers </li></ul><ul><li>All viral channels eventually decay – why? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Invites sent decreases due to saturation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Response rate decreases due to user conditioning </li></ul></ul><ul><li>So keep tuning to stay ahead of the curve! </li></ul><ul><li>… and when you’ve exhausted your primary channels it might be time to explore some creative alternatives </li></ul>
  40. 40. Questions?

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