Moj has an 80-mn strong monthly active user community: Shashank Shekhar
Short video platform, Moj, developed by Sharechat recently crossed 100 million downloads on the Google Playstore. The app which was launched in July 1, 2020 has achieved this milestone within six months of its launch.
Moj and other short video platforms like Josh, Instagram Reels, Glance, Chingari, Trell, Mitron were launched or rose to prominence immediately after the Chinese app ban initiated by the Indian government, one of the casualties of which was the leading short video platform TikTok.
The pandemic has raised the visibility of app based brands especially which offer easy, snackable, and quick entertainment to the youth audience. The battle for this audience is being fought on many fronts, including roping in youth influencers to create for the platform, using Artificial Intelligence algorithms to understand consumption patterns, and leverage youth trends to facilitate engagement.
In conversation with Adgully, Shashank Shekhar, Director, Content Strategy and Operations, ShareChat, speaks about the fascinating growth journey of the app and its secret sauce for content, technology and marketing that have driven the youth audience to adopt its product offering.
You’ve recently crossed the 100 million downloads mark on Google Play Store. What are the factors that contributed to surge in installs?
With the increasing smartphone access and low data bandwidth costs, content consumption on mobile is beginning to grow rapidly in India. In the past few years, short, snackable videos have become a popular format in India and this trend exploded to greater heights in 2020.
The growing appetite for short video consumption, coupled with an increasing number of content creators has started a new digital movement. In the last seven months, we at Moj have seen a variety of content creators, creating unique and niche short video content. As video creation increases, more videos are available for consumption, which further leads to engagement and sharing, and this ultimately results in more demand.
Moj is powered by cutting edge AI and ML technology that understands the community’s consumption pattern and serves them a highly personalised feed based on their interests.
Moreover, it empowers its community with powerful creation tools, backed by robust editing capabilities, a vast music library, camera filters, and special effects for users to create highly engaging and fun original content.
Apart from installs, what kind of engagement are you seeing on the platform (in terms of time spent, DAU/MAU, most popular content/creator)?
Ever since our launch on July 1, 2020, Moj has been on a positive growth trajectory. At present, our app ranks consistently among the top five free apps on Google Play Store and among the top 10 social networking apps on Apple App Store.
Currently, we have an 80 million strong monthly active user community, who are spending an average of 34 minutes daily on the platform. Moj has become the fastest Indian short video platform to surpass 100 million downloads on the Google Play Store.
Moj has the top content creators from the Indian short-video ecosystem and more than 300 Tier 1 influencers on its platform. Arishfa Khan, who has been immensely popular in the past, has already garnered almost 8.1 million followers on the platform. Arishfa is one of those content creators who can add life to any line with her expressions and acting skills. Mohak Narang, who creates videos on finding love, has almost 6.3 million followers. Another star, Sunny Kalra, who creates content on one-liner puns and funny jokes, continues to entertain his fans on Moj and has crossed over 5.4 million followers.
Now that you have achieved a certain scale, are you planning on offering solutions to advertisers and looking at revenue from ads?
We are strengthening the platform with more creators and relevant content for our users. We are presently focused on building the right combination of scale, content, and platform offering before we build a strong ecosystem for brands. We have done this for ShareChat, and we are taking immense learnings while building Moj for the future.
However, there have been immense interests from brands. We are doing initial experimentations with brands like Flipkart and OKCredit and ensure such collaborations only enhance user experience on the platform.
Creator driven content platforms have a strong appeal with audiences who speak regional languages. What has been your strategy to increase the depth of your content?
Our content strategy is completely focused on user generated content. We have invested significant efforts in acquiring top content creators from the Indian short video ecosystem.
Our approach is to break away from the regular categories of short video content like dance & lip-sync and diversify the content available in far more niche categories. We have identified 500+ sub-genres of short video content and are building a unique and distinct content supply by acquiring the best creators in those particular categories.
As a creator driven platform, how have you built community and affinity with your influencers?
Moj equips the creator community on its platform with handy creation tools, empowering them to become social influencers while showcasing their talents. For creators, we have even launched a programme to help build a robust creator ecosystem on the platform. At present, we have tens of thousands of creators enrolled in the Moj Creators Program, through which we assist them to build their content strategy, train and groom them.
As part of this programme, we look to encourage and grow high-quality creators on the platform by organising workshops, training, and more initiatives to help them succeed on the platform.
Furthermore, we are investing in providing creators more tools to help them create engaging and fun, originalcontent, thereby diversifying our content platter.
What are the region specific trends when it comes to usage and engagement on Moj?
Trends driven by music have been highly popular on Moj. Some of the biggest music numbers to which creators are dancing and lip-syncing are ‘Mirchi’ and ‘Naach Meri Rani’ in Hindi, ‘Drunk’ in Tamil and Malayalam, ‘Ringa Ringa’ in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and Kannada.
Songs of Yashraj Mukhate, the famous engineer-turned-music-producer, such as ‘Rasode Mein Kaun Tha’, ‘Biggini Shoot’, ‘SaandhniTh’ have been trending on the platform and are some of the most famous viral trends on Moj.
Festivals are another popular trend on Moj. During festivals, creators bring the cultural essence of the region to the fore with their talents. They get into full swing while preparing and celebrating festivals specific to their regions like Pongal, Lohri, Makar Sankrant and Garba.
What are the internal growth benchmarks that you have set for Moj?
As we continue on our escalating growth journey, our key focus will be on building a robust ecosystem for our creator community and diversifying our content platter. Our primary focus is to build a strong framework for our creators and nurture them to evolve as influencers on our platform.
We are also leading the next level of development for our camera tech function, by unlocking features that include building newer technologies around augmented reality experiences, creating lenses, filters, stickers, live streaming video content capabilities and other technical expertise that will equip our creator community to create highly innovative, vibrant and engaging social experience across Moj.
We are the leading Indian short video destination and would continue our efforts to stay ahead of the curve.