What: Swiss Mobile software developer Myriad Group has revamped its msngr social messaging service by renaming it Versy and turning it to a more content-driven social experience.
Why it matters: Versy is Latin America focused and wants to differentiate its product from competitors WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, and Facebook Messenger.
Mobile software developer Myriad Group has brushed up its msngr social messaging service by renaming it Versy and turning it from a pure group chat proposition to a more content-driven social experience.
For the effort, Myriad teamed up with major content providers like Warner Music, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Perform Group, to differentiate Versy’s offer from that of other messaging platforms such as WhatsApp, Line and WeChat, making it easier to share content within the app.
According to Myriad, the msngr chat service recorded 171 million registered subscribers at the end of 2015 first quarter, compared with 140 million at the end of the fourth quarter of 2014, which means a 22% increase. In Latin America, particularly, the company registered double-digit growth.
We are offering brands the unique opportunity to engage with an untapped audience of feature phone users, which are still a majority throughout Latin America.
“Versy will continue to expand its content offering via strategic relationships with content and brand partners, as well as a growing portfolio of independent content producers (bloggers, influencers and trendsetters), whilst introducing new tools and features,” said Myriad in a statement.
Focus on Latin America
Maren Coleman, VP of Marketing at Versy, tells Portada that Versy is available globally. “However, our current focus is Latin America where we have close relationships with brand and content partners and strategic partnerships with some of the leading telecom companies. Since we launched we have registered a rapid growth in this region, particularly in Mexico. Our plan is to continue to improve the Versy service in Latin America, clarifying our unique proposition and experience, whilst working closely with partners to offer the best content available online.”
Myriad’s chat application, Versy, is mostly used in Latin America and allows users to connect with friends and family for free across feature phones as well as smartphones. Over 60 million content items have been shared on the Versy app. Telcel users in Mexico can use the service without using up any data whatsoever. Versy has strategic relationships with major telco companies including America Movil and Telefonica.
Offering Ways for Brands to Enter Digital Conversations
“Brands and content partners can use Versy to create content channels and start engaging their audience with content that is relevant to them. This content can then be shared and discussed with their groups of friends on Versy, or shared on other social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook or whatsapp,”said Coleman.
According to Coleman, “Currently we are offering Channel Sponsorship Packages and Promoted Chat Posts. Sponsorships are similar to a TV format whereby specific channels will be ‘brought to you by [brand X]’ and the brand secures exposure through integrated branding within the channel and any content which is subsequently shared. Promoted Chat Posts are specifically targeted promotional posts which are inserted at specific times into specific Channels/Conversations with specific CTA designed for sharing internally within Versy and externally into other communication platforms.”
Versy has been working closely with brands and content partners such Sony Music, Sony Pictures, Universal Music, Warner Music and local content partners such as Grupo Acir, Terra and many others, so they can offer content that is interesting and engaging, to ensure it sparks conversation. “We are offering them the unique opportunity to engage with an untapped audience of feature phone users, which are still a majority throughout Latin America,” Coleman says. He also notes that “Additionally, we work with companies such as Perform Media – a leading digital company that commercialises sport content across digital platforms to engage a global audience.”