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Sniply Reaches 100 Million Clicks

Sniply Reaches 100 Million Clicks

Wow—we can hardly believe it! Felt like yesterday when we celebrated our first 100 clicks, yet in the blink of an eye, we’re now celebrating a grand milestone of 100,000,000 clicks. Whenever we pass a major milestone like this, I always try to write a post here to reflect on our progress and share our vision for the future.

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Growing a Simple App into a Comprehensive Platform

When Chris, Nigel, and I first started Sniply… it was a dead simple idea. A web app that helps you add a personalized message to the links you share. We quickly learned that app ideas are everywhere and it’s hard to build a real business out of a one-tricky-pony.

It became clear to us very early on that in order to grow Sniply into something noteworthy, we had to expand our product vision far beyond the simple app idea we came up with at the beginning. In order to build a real, sustainable business, we really had to grow our little app into a comprehensive platform.

You hear this all the time, but it’s so true… listen to your users. We’re product developers but not necessarily marketers by trade. The only way we could build a marketing product was by listening to marketers—our users. Building a business is basically helping people solve problems, and fortunately there are no shortages on problems in the world.

Through chatting with our users, we found all sorts of feature ideas and potential areas for expansion. We used to be a single-feature web app, but now we need an entire features page to house our long list of product offerings.

Over the past year, we’ve added features to allow our users to customize the look and feel of their Sniply messages. We built support for custom domain so you can share links under your own URL. We expanded the original hyperlink call-to-action to include buttons, email capture forms, and all sorts of new CTA types. We worked on building 30+ integrations with popular apps like Hootsuite and Buffer. We built a full fledged analytics platform and even included the ability to add retargeting pixels to your Sniply links to help enhance your remarketing campaigns. The list really goes on and on!

From talking to and listening to our users, we were able to expand our product vision to tackle more problems and bigger challenges. The solution to these problems became product features, which in turn expanded our once-simple web app into something more. Nowadays, I consider Sniply to be a fairly comprehensive platform, fulfilling a wide variety of marketing needs for users of all shapes and sizes. There’s undoubtedly still a lot of work to be done, but I’m extremely proud of our team for how far we’ve come.

 

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Always Searching for the Next Big Thing

The moment you stand still is the moment y0u begin to fade away into obscurity. The internet age moves so quickly that 5 years ago, something like Sniply would make absolutely no sense. Likewise, who knows if Sniply would still be relevant 5 years later. We’ve learned to preserve our curious minds—constantly exploring new problems to solve and keep experimenting.

When we first started Sniply, we knew very little about the content space. Having spent a few years in the industry now, we’ve developed a good measure of market insights. With these insights, we’re able to make more educated guesses for what’s coming next and what the next big thing could be.

One such area is the evolution of content. With the announcements of Facebook Instant Articles (FBIA) and Google Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), the publishing industry is really going through some crazy changes. In response to this industry shift, we at Sniply HQ have been working on a new product: PageFrog.

PageFrog is a product we just launched to help content creators publish and manage content for FBIA and AMP, with support for Snapchat Discover and Apple News coming soon. The first version is designed for WordPress users, so if you’re publishing on WordPress, then you’re in luck! We’ll be working on support for additional platforms in the near future.

In addition to our core work at Sniply, we have plans to build many more free apps and plugins—just like PageFrog—in an effort to continue solving new problems within the content industry as they arise.

 

Well that’s it—I can’t think of anything else to say! Thanks for listening 🙂 If you’d like to back track on our humble journey so far, here are the posts I wrote for our previous milestones:

Sniply Reaches 50 Million Clicks

Sniply Reaches 10 Million Clicks

Sniply Reaches 1 Million Clicks

 

Sincerely,
Mike @Sniply

Sniply Reaches 50 Million Clicks

Sniply Reaches 50 Million Clicks

Last year in April 2014, we came up with this crazy idea of Sniply and shared the concept on Product Hunt, Hacker News, and Reddit. After we got voted up to the front page within minutes, we knew it was something special. 10 months later—today—we’re celebrating the awesome milestone of 50 million clicks!

Chris, Nigel and I were the first 3 users of Sniply. Since then, we’ve attracted some cool new users such as HubSpot, Outbrain, Salesforce, Accenture, Deloitte, Unbounce, Experian, Blackberry, Yesware, and 99designs. We’ve been featured on hundreds of marketing blogs including Neil Patel’s QuickSprout and Michael Stelzner’s Social Media Examiner. All within the past year!

 

Path to 50,000,000 on a Shoestring Budget

Having spent a grand total of $0 in marketing, I’d like to take this time to share how we came this far in the past year. We never raised capital and never had the budget to invest in marketing. Instead, we run as a small team and really only had the resources to focus on building the product with our own sweat equity. Chris, Nigel and I spent every waking hour perfecting the product. We talk to our users everyday, listening and absorbing feedback, then injecting that wisdom back into the product. We made people happy, one user at a time.

It seemed like a silly idea to make a single user happy when everyone is going after millions of users, but it wasn’t long before we saw the impact of our philosophy. We started to notice people writing about Sniply. Not just of our tool or the concept, but of the service and dedication from our team. Our users not only shared Sniply as a tool, but they also spread the word of the commitment they felt from us as founders. We started to rally supporters—organically. No affiliate payout, no sponsorship, just relationships in good faith.

As of today, there are hundreds of blog posts out there about Sniply. They’re evergreen content that drives compound traffic to our site every single day. Every new user that comes by is treated with the same dedication. We engage, we listen, and we build. That’s all we’ve ever done, and perhaps all we’ll ever do.

 

Learning About Our Own Product

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We came up with the Sniply idea, but in many ways, the product is defined by our users. Sniply is quite simple. It’s a tool that allows you to add things to other things. What people do with it—we have relatively little control over. As a result of this, we spend a lot of time observing and learning what our users do with Sniply. How they use it, why they use it, and how they’d like to use it.

Over time, I began compiling my discoveries around these mysteries across multiple posts:

What is Sniply?
Why do people use it?
Introducing Sniply Analytics
How are people driving traffic to their Snips?
How are people improving conversion rates?
What is Sniply’s role in brand awareness?
Why do content publishers like Sniply?
Why do small businesses like Sniply?
Why do large corporations like Sniply?

 

Creating an Extended Culture

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We believe that company cultures should extend beyond internal interactions. Culture should be felt even by the user. We do everything we can to create an open culture where users feel comfortable providing critical feedback. We issue refunds on a heartbeat if anyone is unhappy. We allow users to name their own price. We do everything we can to be human beings first and a company second. We treat our users as though we would our friends. We do everything we can to help them even when it has nothing to do with our product.

We hope to think that when people think of Sniply, they think of the people behind the product. Their attachment to our brand should be beyond our logo and our technology. We want everyone to feel as though they’re part of our product development team; that they can shape our product; that they have a voice that will always be heard and respected. Whether people love or hate what we’ve built, our commitment is to always listen and challenge ourselves to do something about it. If someone loves Sniply, how can we make them love us a little more? If someone hates Sniply, how can we make them hate us a little less?

Those are the things we talk about everyday. An extended culture means we blur the lines between employees and users. This undoubtedly gets harder as we grow bigger, but we can’t afford to disregard the very thing that got us this far.

With that said, thank you all for being part of our ongoing journey!

 

Sniply Reaches 10 Million Clicks

Sniply Reaches 10 Million Clicks

Last month, 30 days ago, we celebrated our big milestone of 1 million clicks on our beloved Sniply links. Today, we’re extremely proud to announce…

We just passed 10 million clicks!

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We don’t believe that our progress has been a result of luck. It’s really the hard work of everyone involved. We call them the Sniply Family, and the Sniply Family extends far beyond the founders. It’s the work of our entire team, our advisors, mentors, evangelists, fans, users, and more.

Big thanks to our team

Chris, Nigel, Sophia and I have been hard at work on building the product. Meanwhile… Jason, Parm, George, Awaad and Jackie have been spreading the word of Sniply far and wide. As we grew our users, Jane, Jars and Vicky took great care of every single one of our guests. On top of all this, Dalia and Katie put together this amazing (but kind of crazy) Sniply Blog.

Big thanks to our mentors

When Sniply acquired Hoverpost and Headshare, we brought on Gregg and Sébastien as advisors to our team. Dean, Wayne and Christian mentored us for a whole year in 2013 and we learned so much from them. Our founding team was assembled through The Next 36, which is the hard work of Tim, Claudia, Reza and Ajay. Last but not least, Sniply is headquartered at the Digital Media Zone (Ex-Google office) in Toronto’s Dundas Square thanks to Matt, Alan and Sean.

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Big thanks to our evangelists

As I’ve mentioned before, we have no marketing budget. We’re extremely fortunate to have the support of so many amazing evangelists. You guys give us feedback on the product, tell your friends about Sniply, and even take the time to write articles and blog posts about our work. What more could we possibly ask for? We can’t thank you enough!!

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At the end of the day, building a startup is hard. It’s harder than anything we’ve ever done, and so much harder than we ever imagined. Everyday is literally an uphill battle. It’s the support of the Sniply Family that keeps pushing us forward. We couldn’t have done it without you!

Thank you everyone!