Summer may be a relaxing time for some, but parties don’t throw themselves, and these past few months have been busy as ever here at House Party HQ. Below, you’ll find a round-up of some of our key recent developments, from our mobile app to further ways to find and share branded content to new email capabilities and partnerships.
We launched the official House Party app for iOS and Android earlier this year, and it’s been a hit among our clients and our community alike. Already downloaded tens of thousands of times, it’s allowed hosts, guests and applicants to find new House Party and Chatterbox™ opportunities, manage their events, upload photos and videos and share that content with their social channels, and more. For our clients, it’s driven even more authentic content and engagement, with app users posting up to 50% more discussions and uploading up to 280% more photos.
Want to see for yourself? Download the app today.
Guided activities and integrated content feed
We’ve made two major site updates recently that, like the mobile app, are designed to provide campaign participants with more fun ways to engage with brands and to create and find compelling content.
First, our “guided activities” feature gives hosts, guests and applicants a more structured campaign experience through a dashboard showing exactly what kind of activities they need to complete (like uploading a photo or tweeting), along with counts of how many they’ve done already and how many they have left. These guided activities change over the course of the campaign: during the recruitment phase, applicants might be asked to post a discussion about why they’d make the perfect host or check out content on the brand’s website or social channels, whereas after the party the task might be to upload a photo of guests having a great time.
Second, our updated integrated content feed offers an easy way to see in real time all of the great content coming out of a campaign: photos, videos, discussions and more. Visitors can sort by content type and choose to see either the newest or the most popular items. Take a peek over on one of our current party pages.
One million community members (and counting)
Earlier this year our community passed the one-million-member mark. As we explained at the time, it was an important moment not only because one million is a big number, but because:
…this milestone gives us a chance to note and celebrate the consistent community growth we’ve been seeing for years now, across a variety of channels. In the beginning, we had website registrants and a small email database; now, those pools are larger and more diverse than ever, but they’re not the only ways for consumers to stay informed and engaged. Our Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram channels ensure that wherever people are, they can find us there. And more importantly, they can find one another, to share party tips, recipes and more with other hosts and guests.
Structured product reviews — which give campaign participants the chance to rate products and provide feedback to the brand and other consumers — have been an important pillar of our platform since 2013, but we recently updated our tools to allow for both text and video reviews. Our chief technology officer, Mike Hermus, summed it up well:
Many of our partner brands feel — and we agree — that video is among the most engaging ways for advocates to show their love of favorite products. A House Party has long been the best way for brands to find their most passionate fans and empower them to drive trial and word of mouth; with our new video reviews, those branded experiences will result in even more valuable content, letting brands — and other consumers — see and hear what these influential advocates have to say.
70% of consumers regularly consult reviews before making online purchases, so channeling the passion and enthusiasm our campaigns generate into reviews that can inform and inspire other consumers is an important initiative for us. Read more about why these video reviews are an exciting development for our brands and our consumers.
In 2014 we teamed up with a leading provider of agile-email technology to create emails with real-time content, most notably dynamic maps within emails that drive consumers to the stores nearest them that carry the promoted products (based on the exact location where the email is opened). We’ve also partnered with an award-winning provider of enterprise email-marketing software, improving deliverability and targeting capabilities across all of our campaigns.
Sending the right email at the right time is crucial to keeping our one million community members happy and active, and we’ve taken the extra step to engage members even when they’re not currently involved in a campaign — with, for instance, multi-part welcome emails, re-engagement emails and a fun birthday message. To that end, we regularly give our audience fun and easy-to-enter sweepstakes, polls, photo contests and more. By leveraging these opportunities through email and connecting with our subscribers more often and more meaningfully, we’ve grown our lists and improved our social reach in crucial ways.