With the ever-increasing amount of social networking products, it becomes difficult for young generations to know whether each one is worth their time. In China, young people prefer to gather on the Soul App. They do not singly regard it as a kill-time choice. They believe it provides a pressure-free zone, a joyous social metaverse full of genuine friendships. Let’s dive into the story behind this popular platform, find its product logic and explore metaverse possibilities through an interview with Soul App’s CEO and founder, Zhang Lu.
Many believe that the metaverse is a single unified universe. However, the fact is that this virtual universe is made up of an endless number of micro-metaverses, which may remind you of the planets that make up the galaxy. The social metaverse differs from previous gens of mobile networks in that it provides a decentralized community. Simply speaking, every netizen is given the same right to express themselves and have their voices heard throughout the metaverse.
In Zhang Lu’s opinion, Soul App distinguished itself with its distinct social mode, which prioritizes both one-on-one and group interactions. Zhang Lu argues that this social mode touches on the metaverse’s underlying premise. She was able to strike a balance between user’s personal ties and a decentralized community. Users can start one-on-one conversations with like-minded individuals. At the same time, they can participate in groups or small interest-based circles to debate or discuss the same issue, exchange their tips or experiences, and express their ideas. Every day, uncountable messages are exchanged in Soul App’s online virtual communities, and countless innovative ideas are hatched in the discussions.
To expand its content identification and user labeling capabilities, Soul App has created sophisticated proprietary artificial intelligence and strong data analytics tools. As a result, Zhang Lu and her team energized the platform and improved the user experience by pushing desirable information to each user and recommending potential friends.
To stimulate and streamline user involvement, Zhang Lu led her team to develop an engaging and immersive virtual environment. A number of entertaining, powerful, and creative tools are provided to enable users to generate content, share funny moments of their daily lives or complaints during hardship and express themselves in various ways, such as customized emojis, video stories, etc.
Zhang Lu and her team also understand the need to create a welcoming, inclusive, and healthy environment for users to build genuine interactions and strong connections. Trying to construct a well-guarded platform, they have developed robust anti-harassment and anti-phishing mechanisms to fight against unwelcomed behaviors.
Currently, users’ real identities are protected on Soul App. No one needs to reveal their personal information. They create entirely new identities in the form of crafted avatars to represent their online personalities and demonstrate their abilities. They can connect with one another by co-experiencing a variety of gamified features through a wide range of settings and social scenes, for example, the large filter collection, Animated Partyrooms and Soul Pets.
One of the most impressive features of Soul App is its interest-based socialization. This app will generate an interest graph for every user and travel them to Planets they belong to, where they can establish connections with other like-minded users. Later, thanks to the powerful AI and data analysis, the platform will precisely recommend to every user curated content and other users holding similar personalities or interests.
Soul App has embraced a tremendous increase in user scale over the last three years while retaining excellent user stickiness and engagement. In 2021, Soul App users generated over 790 million new content in total, with more than 91% receiving more than one response. Furthermore, an active user is expected to read 157 posts every day.
Previously, Soul App’s revenue was primarily derived from value-added services and subscriptions. Its online store allows users to purchase virtual gifts, such as customised skins or decorations for their avatars. Currently, brands and advertisers flock to this social networking app, thanks to its high user engagement and retention rates. For example, the famous automobile manufacturer Chevrolet, the Tencent-backed Game for Peace (a mobile game) have all conducted crossover cooperation with Soul App.
The previous year witnessed the rapid developments of metaverse, particularly in the Internet industry. It appears that all the industries are well prepared to welcome the metaverse. Currently, the metaverse is still lying ahead for pioneers to explore and construct. Zhang Lu has invited us to explore the future of human society via the vision of Soul metaverse. She is optimistic that Soul App’s social metaverse will eventually achieve the full power of human imagination and create a unified social network that transcends time, geography, and language.