Following its $135 million, Goldman Sachs-led funding round in July, Lightricks, the parent company of photo and selfie editor apps Facetune and Facetune2, is searching for white space opportunities.
On Wednesday, Lightricks unveiled its suite of BoostApps called StoryBoost, PosterBoost and VideoBoost for budding fashion and beauty brands and influencers, which includes both photo and video editing capabilities, as well as copywriting assistance in the form of sample verbiage. The tools will optimize color, logo placement, filters and copy display, said Zur Tene, Lightricks division manager, who is leading the BoostApps team. Future app updates will be based on user feedback and needs.
“When we realized about 30% of our users were small- and medium-sized businesses trying to make perfect content for their businesses and not for fun, social purposes, we wanted to democratize what we did and cater to that,” said Tene,
After discovering a new need that it could solve within its four walls, the company conducted a survey of 600 brands and influencers, and found that 72% spent half of their working hours on digital marketing efforts but did not feel that they were adequately meeting their marketing and sales goals.
Lightricks, which reached a $1 billion valuation this summer, subsequently divided its 300-plus team to focus on three products and its fundamental users: Enlight (typically used by artists), FaceTune (used by social media users) and now BoostApps for artists and social media entrepreneurs that also have a business arm to support. In the first quarter of 2020, Lightricks will also incorporate post scheduling capabilities. Across Lightricks’ suite of apps, it has 190 million users worldwide and 3 million subscribers.
“Brands know they need to be on platforms like Instagram or TikTok or Pinterest, but they still need help amplifying their presence online from ideation to then actually creating content,” said Stav Tischler, Lightricks director of marketing and communications. “We consider ourselves a social media marketing mentor. We have the expertise and want to give that to brands and influencers.”
Elise Darma, an Instagram marketing consultant, added, “I’ve been hearing the same concerns over and over — engagement is dropping, the markets are overcrowded and content creation is overwhelming. There’s also the frustration of thinking about what kind of content needs to be created [for what platforms], as that moves the needle in businesses.”
Upon launch day, Lightricks will begin courting businesses that have relationships with remote office sharing services like WeWork, and is hiring an influencer manager to directly work with content creators. While the company would not detail projections for BoostApps or the company overall for the rest of 2019 or 2020, it reported it grew revenue by 300% year over year from 2018 to 2019. The individual Boost App subscriptions range in price from $45 to $60 a year, while a multiprong membership for all three apps is $96.
“Releasing a new suite of apps, which we have never done before, is addressing a new audience and concern,” said Tischler. “We are obviously expecting significant growth from this because it’s a new model and a need in the market.”