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The Next Instagram – Social Network For Stories

Would you use this social network? (Feel free to share your reasons in the comments)

  • Yes, as both a storyteller and a listener

  • Yes, as a storyteller

  • Yes, as a listener

  • No


Results are only viewable after voting.

Alex Paul

New Contributor
May 23, 2018
7
2
14
Hi Fast Laners! I recently had an idea.

We all have stories to tell, right. We tell stories in our social circle, to our friends, they tell us something back, we laugh or awe at it and feel awesome. Storytelling is interesting for both a teller and a listener, and has long been a common activity we all regularly do.

As storytellers we express ourselves by doing so and feel amazing; on the other hand, people love listening to interesting or funny stories if they're told in a captivating way.

But real life storytelling has its problems:
  • You can't share stories effectively after hearing them (or you can, but your depiction isn't as cool as the original).
  • You can't listen to stories from anyone because you're limited to some geographic location and people generally don't share stories on existing social networks.
  • You don't know have convenient-to-use filters on which stories you listen to unless you thoroughly ask beforehand, and most fundamentally, you don't know which stories are good enough to listen.
These problems could be solved with a service which connects storytellers and listeners and is built around a story as a main value unit. It would essentially be Instagram for stories, with stories shared as videos (solves problem #1), having a feed which employs certain filters based on user preference (solves problems #2 and #3).

You would basically scroll through short video clips, watching common people tell cool funny stories, and occasionally post something of your own.

Of course, getting both storytellers and listeners on board is an issue to tackle here. But I think the big question is whether anyone will actually use it. I'm speaking of users here, not customers, as sufficient user engagement would drive monetization.

So from a user perspective:
  • Would you use this social network as a storyteller?
  • Would you use it as a listener, provided there are many interesting stories in the network?
  • Why wouldn't you use it as a storyteller? What issues wouldn't you like to face?
  • What existing alternatives are you using or would use? How are they better?
And from an entrepreneur perspective:
  • Do you think there already is a good solution?
  • Do you think it's not an important enough need?
  • What potential risks and pitfalls do you see for this endeavor?
  • What resources would you advise to verify my idea?
I'm very open to honest feedback :)

Questions marked bold are the most important ones to answer, so sharing your opinion on them alone would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Last edited:

cwalto12

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I feel like this could result in another Facebook if it is left alone to regular everyday users. Just a place where people go to bitch all the time. I don’t think that listening to people complain (to random strangers or even friends) about their day sounds appealing. People hear stories they don’t care about all day everyday from coworkers.

Now, if it were legit, professional storytellers,(comedians?) then maybe.

People loved Vine for a little while. Do you count that as telling a six second story?

I think this idea is just like a video podcast that you can share with friends, right?

If you can find great storytellers there may be an audience.
 

jramos02

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May 18, 2018
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As @cwalto12 said, this sounds kinda like Vine. It also just sounds like podcasts, but with videos (semi like Youtube). My question then is - how is this unique? How is it different from all of the above?
 

RedBaron

Contributor
May 24, 2018
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Los Angeles
check out the app social network called Hear Me Out. You use audio clips to interact with other people. Comedians use it, Musicians, "GURU's", storytellers
 
OP
OP
Alex Paul

Alex Paul

New Contributor
May 23, 2018
7
2
14
Alright, first, thanks everyone for responding! Appreciate it.

I feel like this could result in another Facebook if it is left alone to regular everyday users. Just a place where people go to bitch all the time. I don’t think that listening to people complain (to random strangers or even friends) about their day sounds appealing. People hear stories they don’t care about all day everyday from coworkers.

Now, if it were legit, professional storytellers,(comedians?) then maybe.

People loved Vine for a little while. Do you count that as telling a six second story?

I think this idea is just like a video podcast that you can share with friends, right?

If you can find great storytellers there may be an audience.
The whole point is to show interesting stories using curation. I mean, surely you have friends who tell awesome captivating stories, that's what I'm talking about.

Actually, here's approximately what I mean by a story. It's a 3-5 minute short story, the format you use when talking to someone in real life.

Now, of course people aren't Kevin-Heart's. But once again, you probably know people who tell good enough stories in your social circle; I sure do, and I still haven't heard all stories I could hear from, for example, other people in my town, which I'm sure I'd be interested in.

Is that same for you, @cwalto12?

It's alright if not, that's why this thread exists.

As @cwalto12 said, this sounds kinda like Vine. It also just sounds like podcasts, but with videos (semi like Youtube). My question then is - how is this unique? How is it different from all of the above?
For Vine, the format is different. Vine is 6 seconds of video action, so definitely not classic storytelling, which you use when telling stories in real life. I agree it's captivating though.

Podcasts and YouTube are actually legit competitors, granted, you can find my format of stories there (podcasts don't have video, but that's not a deal breaker). But I still think these solutions aren't good enough.

YouTube is for pretty much everything out there, so stories from common people get lost.
And podcasts are typically long and profile-centered, while my whole point is to spread interesting and funny stories using feed. It's like galleries vs Instagram.

The question is, @jramos02, would you be interested in such a format of stories?

check out the app social network called Hear Me Out. You use audio clips to interact with other people. Comedians use it, Musicians, "GURU's", storytellers
Thanks, I checked out Hear Me Out. Still, I don't think they use an optimal format. You can't really tell a good story in a 30 second audio clip.

Snapchat?

I mean there literally called stories on snapchat
Not exactly what I mean to create, but in terms of spread algorithms it's close. I think people would be interested in short 3-5 minute stories, like this, just the same way we tell stories in real life. Which is not what Snapchat currently provides.

Would you be interested in listening to or producing such stories, @Sagemoney?
 

jramos02

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The question is, @jramos02, would you be interested in such a format of stories?
Potentially. I'm always interested in hearing people's journeys for example, or how they accomplished a particular task/project/success. Things like that could be interesting. Think progress thread, but in your storytelling format.

The questions I would also pose to you: what problem do you think this would solve? Or what need would it satisfy?
 

rollerskates

Silver Contributor
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Based on current social media, I think the last thing the world needs is more "stories". I would be interested in entrepreneurs' stories, maybe.
 
OP
OP
Alex Paul

Alex Paul

New Contributor
May 23, 2018
7
2
14
Potentially. I'm always interested in hearing people's journeys for example, or how they accomplished a particular task/project/success. Things like that could be interesting. Think progress thread, but in your storytelling format.

The questions I would also pose to you: what problem do you think this would solve? Or what need would it satisfy?
Hearing people's journeys is a cool topic btw, haven't thought of it.

As your question goes, there are two sides of the market: storytellers and listeners.

For storytellers self-expression is a chief need satisfied. Everyone loves telling their stories.

For listeners it's curiosity and entertainment. I mean, people crack up when hearing real life stories, why not bring it online. It'll be free too, only ads.

Real life storytelling satisfies these needs, but it has problems which I outlined in the first post.
 

jramos02

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Focusing on a niche could be interesting. Comedian's journeys into standup for example. Or an entrepreneurs journey into success. But the latter there is quite a bit of already (EoFire - which I am not a big fan of anymore, but it is a highly listened podcast, and also what Tom Bilyeu is doing with Impact Theory).

What would be interesting with something like this is if you make it easy for the every day person tell their own story, but it is also moderated in a way. Say: people that were part of a shooting, people that were at a specific game, things like that. Make it easy for them to tell that story, but have some sort of moderation of what is actually uploaded. The latter would require a lot of monitoring and man power though.
 

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Late Bloomer

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These problems could be solved with a service which connects storytellers and listeners and is built around a story as a main value unit.
If anyone's interested enough to pay for this, it seems that it might work as a FB app rather than your own new social network. That way you don't have to recruit people to a new service or deal with login and security code and servers, etc. All you'd need is to provide a connection layer on top. I'm skeptical about whether storytelling in general could be profitable as you describe. But a lot of stuff I'm skeptical about makes money anyway!
 

Akeem

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I feel you're just following Snapchat and Instagram's 'stories' feature too much. I mean stories are cool but Snapchat already got the credit and recognition. Instagram hopped onboard and implemented it and now Facebook, WhatsApp, VK and almost every other social network has implemented it. It's a bit like the rush to buy cryptocurrency. The first ones to buy and sell make a large amount of profit and the rest get caught up with the cryptocurrency and struggle to sell it for anything more than what they initially paid for it.

My point is, stories are just too mainstream now. I wouldn't advise you to 'follow the crowd'. Think about it, almost every social network you sign into wants you to post a story and tell everyone how your day went or what your life's like. I mean it gets pretty repetitive. I'd recommend sticking your head down and thinking of the 'next big thing'. Statistically, you'll more than likely succeed at a completely new idea than you will do at a 'stories' social network.

I don't mean to discourage you, this is just my personal opinion on your idea. Regardless of what you choose to do, I hope you succeed :)
 

Envious

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What about an app that allows each person to add their own sentence to the story?

For instance :
" Once apon a time there was a big fat woman called Edna"...

It would then select another person to add to the story

" Edna lived in a forest with three big chimpanzees"

It could be an interactive and entertaining way to create a something.
 

jramos02

Contributor
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May 18, 2018
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What about an app that allows each person to add their own sentence to the story?

For instance :
" Once apon a time there was a big fat woman called Edna"...

It would then select another person to add to the story

" Edna lived in a forest with three big chimpanzees"

It could be an interactive and entertaining way to create a something.
I don't think you really need an app for this though. It is something you could already do in a forum for example. What would the benefit of the app be? Apart from the mobility, I suppose.
 

Mainstream7

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Jan 1, 2015
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I think there is already a solution to that. It´s called Reddit. You can create a Subreddit called "RealLifeStories" and validate your idea.
 

Envious

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I don't think you really need an app for this though. It is something you could already do in a forum for example. What would the benefit of the app be? Apart from the mobility, I suppose.
Many apps aren’t ‘needed’ but they gain popularity because they are entertaining. I personally don’t think a new app about stories is needed at all, I was just trying to help out with ideas.
 

jramos02

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Many apps aren’t ‘needed’ but they gain popularity because they are entertaining. I personally don’t think a new app about stories is needed at all, I was just trying to help out with ideas.
Totally fair and a very good point.
 
OP
OP
Alex Paul

Alex Paul

New Contributor
May 23, 2018
7
2
14
Focusing on a niche could be interesting. Comedian's journeys into standup for example. Or an entrepreneurs journey into success. But the latter there is quite a bit of already (EoFire - which I am not a big fan of anymore, but it is a highly listened podcast, and also what Tom Bilyeu is doing with Impact Theory).

What would be interesting with something like this is if you make it easy for the every day person tell their own story, but it is also moderated in a way. Say: people that were part of a shooting, people that were at a specific game, things like that. Make it easy for them to tell that story, but have some sort of moderation of what is actually uploaded. The latter would require a lot of monitoring and man power though.
Actually your second paragraph is exactly what I'm talking about :)

A niche is great for early adoption. Ultimately though I'm trying to see if there's a big market for my app.

If anyone's interested enough to pay for this, it seems that it might work as a FB app rather than your own new social network. That way you don't have to recruit people to a new service or deal with login and security code and servers, etc. All you'd need is to provide a connection layer on top. I'm skeptical about whether storytelling in general could be profitable as you describe. But a lot of stuff I'm skeptical about makes money anyway!
I think with enough content ad monetization should be enough to sustain the project. And I think there's enough content, as everybody has a lot of stories to share.

I feel you're just following Snapchat and Instagram's 'stories' feature too much. I mean stories are cool but Snapchat already got the credit and recognition. Instagram hopped onboard and implemented it and now Facebook, WhatsApp, VK and almost every other social network has implemented it. It's a bit like the rush to buy cryptocurrency. The first ones to buy and sell make a large amount of profit and the rest get caught up with the cryptocurrency and struggle to sell it for anything more than what they initially paid for it.

My point is, stories are just too mainstream now. I wouldn't advise you to 'follow the crowd'. Think about it, almost every social network you sign into wants you to post a story and tell everyone how your day went or what your life's like. I mean it gets pretty repetitive. I'd recommend sticking your head down and thinking of the 'next big thing'. Statistically, you'll more than likely succeed at a completely new idea than you will do at a 'stories' social network.

I don't mean to discourage you, this is just my personal opinion on your idea. Regardless of what you choose to do, I hope you succeed :)
I see your point. You gave me something to think about. Thanks a lot.

What about an app that allows each person to add their own sentence to the story?

For instance :
" Once apon a time there was a big fat woman called Edna"...

It would then select another person to add to the story

" Edna lived in a forest with three big chimpanzees"

It could be an interactive and entertaining way to create a something.
I think there's a very limited market for this, and this probably already exists.

I don't think you really need an app for this though. It is something you could already do in a forum for example. What would the benefit of the app be? Apart from the mobility, I suppose.
Well, actually forums are terrible for keeping people entertained and engaged, they're designed for professionals. I'm open to discuss this, but I deem feed to be more enticing than forums. And engagement is the whole point.

I think there is already a solution to that. It´s called Reddit. You can create a Subreddit called "RealLifeStories" and validate your idea.
I'll research it and try it out, thanks for your suggestion!

Many apps aren’t ‘needed’ but they gain popularity because they are entertaining. I personally don’t think a new app about stories is needed at all, I was just trying to help out with ideas.
In my opinion apps that aren't needed actually solve some pain point which isn't obvious, like a need for validation, entertainment, avoiding boredom, socialization, etc. All these things are incredibly important, so building better solutions for them is important too.

If we dig deep, sharing real life stories digitally the way you share them in real life (in an actual storytelling video format) solves quite a few of those problems.
 

Late Bloomer

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The question isn't whether it's possible to invent a new web site or app that offers some kind of unique twist. The question is whether that solves a problem so meaningful to so many people that they'll eagerly pay for it, or eagerly stay around through the ads. Telling more meaningful stories that reach people's emotions, is a multi billion dollar business (Hollywood, video games, fiction publishing). They succeed because they tap into such widespread and fundamental basic human feelings and desires, at our fascinating and happiness with a great story we can enjoy at a low price for hours of entertainment and art. What I don't see is how "slightly less annoying version of a dorm BS session" links up to basic human psychology, in a way that would make people eager to spend money for it.
 

0dysseus

Contributor
May 23, 2018
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Would you use this social network as a storyteller? => yes.

Would you use it as a listener? => yes.

Why wouldn't you use it as a storyteller? => This is just my take, and it's an idea I've been thinking about as well, but I'd love to CAPTURE the original story, not retell it. Think hardware or phone or watch that records everything that happens to you as it happens, and you then decidee what to post as a story. Yeah yeah, shady and potential legal problems and all, but you'll need some edge because people will just keep using Snapchat and Instagram, and if people love it you'll have the resources to figure it out.

Do you think it's not an important enough need? => I think nobody really needs any social networks. They're not banking software, they're something cool that people love more than they actually need it, trying to apply the classical "Lean Startup" stuff might not make much sense for these types of products (my personal opinion, free to dissagree or prove me wrong).

What resources would you advise to verify my idea? => Looks like you're already doing parts of it, so you'll probably know about all the subreddits and ProductHunt and HackerNews kinds of things. Anyway, I'll attach my highly disorganized and never curated list. Here comes the plug: try and use my social media tool hustlecool.com, I built it with the intention of quickly building up several social media accounts (Twitter and Instagram for now, more coming soon), just create 4 or 5 accounts, follow/unfollow on relevant topics and hashtags for a week, post some cool stuff and talk to a lot of people, that's my best advice. If you like it and would like to use it, reach out to me and I'll hook you up with some extended free trial.

Cheers
 

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