Looking Back On This Week’s Tips

1.One of the biggest questions that arose after Snapchat’s S-1 filing is about the company’s ability to grow. As mentioned in the S-1 document, Snap’s growth in user base during the last quarter of 2016 was the lowest that year, with a growth rate of only 3.2% – a fifth of the growth rate it experienced two quarters prior. A look at engagement intelligence service Apptopia indicates a decline in Snapchat’s new iOS downloads for the last 30 days.

2.How does the crisis in IoT startup Jawbone look from the inside? This graph generated by LinkedIn shows a gradual decline in employee count since the beginning of 2015. During that period the company was cut in half, from more than 500 to 260 people. Jawbone, known for its fitness bands and Bluetooth speakers, has been dealing with sales difficulties in recent months, and recently decided to move away from the consumer market to clinical services, meaning they’re moving towards a B2B business model.

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3.The Crunchies award for the best startup was given yesterday to the work messaging app Slack. The successful app beat out other popular services such as Giphy, SpaceX, Didi, and Stripe. The decision was made by a board assembled by TechCrunch, which included editors alongside entrepreneurs, investors, and other tech notables. But how justified is the decision? Using Google Trends, it’s easy to see how much general attention each of the services attracts. And most of the time, Slack attracts the most attention.

 4.A great way to track a company’s growth is to check its social networks channels and blog. When doing that, it is important to compare the current stream of posts and news to postings in the past. A company that has stopped updating some of the channels or has been doing it at a much slower pace is possibly in turmoil.

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Looking Back On This Week’s Daily Tips

1.What factors predict that a startup is likely to be successful? After have following the path of thousands of private companies, Zirra has narrowed it down the six most important factors: Market, Product, Team, Vision, Execution, and Momentum. In this example, Ola’s gifted team and excellent momentum are making up for an “OK” product.  [Read here for Zirra’s Company Analysis Report on Ola Cabs]

2.Avoiding Tech Fake News: As with politics, Tech coverage is bound to have some fake news in it. By that we don’t mean there’s a farm of teens in Macedonia producing systematic fake titles about Google and Facebook. We’re talking about the major news and tech outlets. By no means are we claiming that they deliberately publish fake news in order to fool readers. However, sometimes they lack the time and resources to produce a balanced article about a tech company or a product. There are two major reasons for this (1) A lack of time and resource from one side, and an abundance of incoming news bringing reporters to take the easy way out, counting too much on PR and not talking other sources in order to get a critical point of view; (2) They want to benefit a source who gave them a good story, so they are ready to disregard critical aspects of a product or a company related to this source, or to go as far as initiating a positive article. The lesson is – take every tech article with a grain of salt. And, always search for critical thought among your network of experts.

3.Apptopia and SimilarWeb are two tools which can provide you with engagement intelligence about different web and mobile services. SimilarWeb grew from websites and web applications into mobile, while Apptopia was founded as a mobile app intelligence provider which can supply data on downloads and usage. However, we at Zirra recommend double checking with Google Play and Apple’s App Store for data on downloads and recent reviews to get the full picture, as SimilarWeb and Apptopia present only a part of the situation. [How we used SimilarWeb and Apptopia to analyze Houseparty app]

4.Was Uber affected by the #deleteuber campaign on Twitter and Facebook, following its decision not to join the taxi drivers’ strike against immigration ban? And, was Lyft the ultimate winner? Using data provided by Apptopia, Uber is suffering a slight decline in their app store ranking since the strike on Saturday. Lyft is clearly gaining a great momentum, but on Monday it saw the beginning of a decline.