- Thursday, 30.01.20, 18:00 - 20:00 Uhr
- STARTPLATZ, Im Mediapark 5, 50670 Köln
- Benedikt Mix
Autor: Bianca Kuehn
Arian and Boris from swinx developed their video app to make social media videos more interactive and empower young people to implement other videos in their own recordings that they and their friends love. The goal of the Accelerator team: less focus on self-centric monologues, more focus on friendship. We met the two founders and learned about their founding story of swinx and how the development of the market was a fortune for them.
What problem is your startup solving? Can you give an example?
Arian: „We have experienced that young people love sending each other video messages. Normally these are very self-centric monologues to the camera. We decided to empower young people to include moments and memories they share with their friends and love into their videos and make it all about them, their friendship and their shared memories, not only about their faces talking to the camera.“
What is your educational background? Did you always see yourself starting your own business?
Boris: „My educational background is Business Information Systems. And yours?“
Arian: „I studied Medicine before.“
What was your inspiration for your startup?
Arian: „This question doesn’t have an easy answer. We didn’t have this one special aha-moment and then started our unique idea. First, we started our video app with a different concept and during this process, we had the gut feeling that we had an even better idea and decided to pivot into this direction. It was definitely a process.“
Boris: „It was all about finding a good fit and our unique DNA over time.“
Arian: „Yes, our first idea was very similar to one that’s already on the market, the lip-sync-app called musical.ly. Although it went really well and had good numbers, we wanted to have a unique concept and differentiate ourselves from existing apps.“
What was the first obstacle you faced and how did you overcome it?
Boris: „I think it was User Experience.“
Arian: „Yes, the first obstacle was to form a new and unknown user behavior and teach people how to use the App. It wasn’t as easy as we thought and because our first attempt was kind of a copy of another App that was widely known to people, it was completely different with swinx. When we started this completely new and unique attempt, we had to teach our users from scratch how to use it.“
What are some short term and especially long term goals of yours?
Arian: „Our short term goal is to simplify the whole user session and to make it much more intuitive so that new users don’t have to go through a complicated onboarding process. Also, we want to find investors who are interested in this whole growing area of mobile video apps.“
Boris: „And the most important long term goal is definitely to gain strength and acquire many users.“
What is the next milestone for your startup?
Arian: „Our next milestone is to succeed in our main challenges and in the end make the user happy. We want to have an intuitive App that brings joy instead of confusion or difficulty, even when used for the first time. Another milestone would be to partner up and cooperate with special public personalities and to get support from them.“
If you could start over again, what would you do differently?
Boris: „In my opinion, we would make a smaller MVP and get much more feedback early on.“
Arian: „Yes looking back we should have worked much closer together with our users, gotten more communication and feedback and constantly exchanged with them to adjust to it accordingly.“
Why did you choose STARTPLATZ Accelerator?
Arian: „We visited this place once and we fell in love with it right away. It provides many things that we have been missing in other coworking spaces. For example, we can meet many other developers we can talk to, exchange experiences with and learn from.“
What and who has helped you the most outside and inside STARTPLATZ to getting you on the road?
Arian: „Our friends and supporters were a huge benefit. We also found it very valuable to meet people who already developed an app before, guided us through the challenges and helped us to focus on the most important aspects according to our current status. The developments in the market including the internet trends really played into our cards as well. This whole exploding trend of mobile video apps, such as TicToc, Instagram, IG TV, Youtube, etc., was in our favor.“
If you could give another startup a tip, what would it be? Any words of advice?
Boris: „Just do it!“
Arian: „Don’t do it!“ (laughs)
Boris: „It depends. It’s very time-consuming and sometimes also frustrating. I think for the last two years we spend every day on our projects, without holidays, even on birthdays and weekends. But you can give it a try. It’s always very fun.“