Byravee Iyer
Nov 18, 2015

Creative HotHouse sees untapped brand opportunity in user-generated social posts

SINGAPORE - Creative HotHouse (CHH) is preparing to introduce Jet8, a platform that promises to turn user-generated social media into an opportunity for brands by placing branded content in mobile applications that are built for users in lower-bandwidth regions.

CHH's Fotoku app
CHH's Fotoku app

"Users like creating media with brands they are fans of," said founder and CEO Victor Zabrockis. "Brands have a certain status associated with them and users are attracted to this—but few solutions currently exist to tap into this.” 

Jet 8 will combine a series of end-user apps with a cloud-based analytics platform for brands and agencies. CHH has already introduced a series of eight specialised social-media apps, such as one that provides frames for selfies and another that provides music for videos. The idea is that clients provide branded assets, which users then incorporate into social posts. In turn brands are able to reward users through digital currency, which is used in app to make purchases.

“Superimposing a branded frame on a picture may sound a bit trivial, but most apps around take processing power, time to render and so on—a process that we’ve made seamless,” Zabrockis said. CHH’s development team spent significant time developing compression technology that helps reduce upload and download times. “Our goal is to make apps that are light for download and optimised for user-generated content creation for all kinds of users.” 

Jet8 is currently in beta and is scheduled to go public by mid-March, when it will be available in an open API (application programming interface)—making it easier for agencies and brands to develop their own assets on standardised formats.

It is Zabrockis' view that no other firm in the region has tapped into fully localised, culturally relevant and religiously respectful content. Since its soft launch, the company claims to have reached 150 million people in the region.

L-R: Mike Allen (CMO), Zabrockis, Joshua Thomson (CNO)

“Culturally, SEA social users are very transactional, are open to selling or offering things to influence others for rewards or status and have no shame in asking or trading,” said the CEO.

The analytics platform will allow agencies to see who is viewing the co-created content and will offer drill-down by campaign, network, age, gender and geography. “This allows agencies to exactly match the media related to a certain campaign with the exact user they are targeting,” Zabrockis said.

CHH’s dashboard is all cloud-based. While the monitoring capabilities are initially only embedded in CHH apps, external apps could be added in the future.

Although Zabrockis won’t share who his clients are, he said the company is “mostly focused” on consumer-goods firms. Zabrockis believes CHH’s solution will strongly appeal to agencies that are challenged to deploy rapidly expanding budgets for social media and co-braded content in Southeast Asia.

CHH’s 70-person team started operations over two years ago and launched its flagship office in Indonesia. The company started by building applications that could be easily downloaded, understood and operated. Following that, it opened offices in the Philippines and Singapore. So far, the firm’s main growth countries are Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar.


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