Eight international media tech start-ups are presently undergoing a six-month, intensive programme called Next Media Accelerator (NMA) in Hamburg. As part of the programme, they receive up to EUR50,000 euros as an investment and are supported by experts and entrepreneurs from the media and technology sector. Their business ideas will be further developed in time for the Demo Day on December 17, 2018. Hamburg News took a look behind the scenes and talked to the start-ups about their visions, dreams and goals . The second part focuses on the Whyapply, Shuut and Heysite start-ups.
Whyapply – alternative to conventional job advertisements
Ronald Scholz and Michael Benz are the duo behind the Leipzig-based Whyapply. As a lateral entrant (Islamic Studies and Ethnology), Benz has first-hand experience of how tough application procedures can be for people with unorthodox career paths. This eventually led to the idea of approaching candidates differently – entirely without a job advertisement or cover letter. Companies devise real challenges for candidates applying for a vacancy and try to appeal to applicants as an attractive employer in this way. Whyapply is keen to let content unfold as a performance marketing campaign in social media networks, target-group specific and mobile. Candidates have to pen a short idea explaining why they are interested in the job. The company’s personnel officer receives the email, approaches potential candidates and discusses job offers with applicants.
Given the dominant role of publishing companies in Germany’s personnel/HR market, Whyapply is particularly interested in looking behind the scenes to see how publishing companies in Hamburg work. The company hopes to launch its product in Germany in late 2018. “In our view, today’s recruiting process is no longer up to date. If we can focus more on real work and away from covert buzzwords in job advertisements, we would be very happy,” said Benz. Spun a little further into the future, the United States would certainly be an interesting market, Benz added. But that goal is still distant.
Shuut – 3-in-1 app for social media advertising
The Tallinn-based start-up wants to support SMEs in advertising with moving images – in the twinkling of an eye. However, the high cost of television advertising does not make the medium the founders’ first choice. To overcome this obstacle, the team of four led by Laura Löhmus has developed an app named Shuut. Professional video clips can be produced and shared via social media such as Facebook or Instagram without any great technical and financial effort using merely a mobile phone. The app is proving a 3-in-1 all-rounder akin to a digital director and helps users to create videos. The next step is to publish the results on Facebook and Instagram. The application also gathers data to evaluate the campaign’s success.
Founded in 2017, Löhmus, Niko Porkka, Dane Tall and Ivo Nellis have already secured a place in Estonia’s Elevator Startups programme. Commenting on the Hamburg Accelerator, Löhmus noted: “We are looking forward to meeting strategic partners and mentors during the Next Media Accelerator who will support us on our way to the next one. At the moment, we are developing a new version of the app, which will be released soon.”
Heysite – mini websites bring topics to the point
Although a wealth of kits for websites are already available, Heysite stands out by letting users create a minimalistic website consisting of a background image or gif, a logo, a headline, a sub line, up to three linked buttons and social media buttons in just one minute. The offer targets individuals or commercial customers organising a special event or happening rather than online shops or bloggers. The media-tech start-up wants to offer a simple and free means of creating a message outside of network silos like Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter etc. The message can be spread all over other channels and the recipients can pass it on via other social networks, messengers or email.
The Cologne-based Heysite team of four launched in 2016. Then an international school in Indonesia and the Miami Ad School in Hamburg quickly took advantage of their offer. The founders’ have high hopes for the six-month programme. Stephan Kinganamchira, co-founder and UX designer, explained: “Through NMA, we hope to gain the support of media professionals who will help us expand our product and generate the necessary B2C and B2B reach. We look forward to coaching that will make us better founders. We want to transform our product into a company that can grow and evolve with the Next Media Accelerator.”