Andrew Maltin is a serial entrepreneur. Andrew has built several companies prior to founding MEDL Mobile and Hang w/.
Hang With is live streaming social media. Their mission is to connect the world through authentic, shared, live streaming social media experiences. The platform was incubated by MEDL Mobile and has since spun off to become its own company – now with more than 1,000,000 downloads and users across the world.
BusinessInterviews.com: Can you share why and how you’re working to make the social media experience more authentic?
Andrew: About six years ago I cofounded a company that builds mobile apps for clients. We became very successful building apps for major companies and entertainment brands – from Hollywood studios to sports teams to celebrities.
It was our celebrity clients who pointed out how inauthentic social media was becoming. Some of our celebrity clients had friends who had hired social media teams to tweet and post for them. Our clients were the types who wanted an authentic relationship with their fans, so they were looking for an app to build a relationship with their fans. After talking to so many of them, we realize there was a need for a social media platform that allowed someone with a lot of fans to connect on a very real and personal level. Something that couldn’t he faked by social media team. The solution was live streaming video. The solution was Hang w/.
BusinessInterviews.com: You impressively reached 1M downloads in just 9 months. How did you manage to gain such serious traction in such a short period of time?
Andrew: Again the solution was what makes Hang w/ special. Many celebrities were attracted to the platform and they tweeted, Instagram posted and Facebook posted to their own fans inviting their friends to come hang out with them on Hang w/. This kind of social media attention quickly drove downloads and helped us achieve more than 1 million downloads in a record time.
BusinessInterviews.com: Can you share some trends in social media that you’re excited about?
Andrew: I believe the trend is moving towards a more authentic relationship in social media like the relationship hang w/ provides. Live media is only now becoming possible because technology is finally catching up with consumer demand. as bandwidth and technology get better and better the ability to connect live will get better and better. We are only at the forefront of what is possible with live streaming technology and Hang w/ is going to be pushing the envelope as the market evolves.
BusinessInterviews.com: Why are you a strong believer in that it’s better to race a product to market and let the market evolve your product than keeping it in the lab until it’s perfect?
Andrew: There is nothing like putting a product out to market to see how people use it in order to perfect the product. In the old days you needed to release a product and then do consumer feedback for a long period of time and then spend a long period of time evolving your product. Today the production cycles are so fast that we can be getting feedback from our consumers and instantly make adjustments to the product in order to make it better. Many of the best features from Hang w/ such as sharing to Facebook came directly from our users. We have a good idea of what the market desires, but the market feedback is invaluable to fine-tune the product.
BusinessInterviews.com: Can you share how incubating the Hang With platform helped MEDL Mobile evolve into its own company?
Andrew: we have built lots of apps for lots of clients and customers, but building our own up and taking it to market has shown us so much about what it takes to truly evolve an idea from a concept into a market ready project. Now when we build for our clients we build faster sprints with shorter milestones to ideate and test theories rather than build something from start to finish and then test. We’re much more nimble now that we’ve experienced building our own product
BusinessInterviews.com: What’s the biggest business based risk that you’ve ever taken and how did it turn out?
Andrew: In 2012, we had dozens of internal projects that we were incubating. All of them were getting different amounts of attention and none of them were breaking through in the market. We decided to kill every internal project and focus all of that energy on one product, Hang w/. It was the best thing we’ve ever done. Rather than have lots of ideas that weren’t necessarily taking off, we now have one product that everyone can collaborate to help us build and of the product is growing successfully.
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