Startups that lost big.
BranchOut – launched in 2010 as a Facebook application for professional networking, has pivoted to be a messaging platform for teams of coworkers. But in 2012 the number of users dropped from 25 million registered to 3 million monthly active users. The collapse was unexpected.
Failure reason: not focusing on retaining customers. The users have not remained loyal to the network after they have joined the community, they were not attached to the brand.
JobKatch – once a social CRM or management tool for job seekers to help them organize their job search and network with relevant contacts and even with the built-in integrations with LinkedIn failed to proceed and remained in the shadow of competitors and similar products.
Failure reason: a tool must have a clear brand what was not the case. A ridiculous name, plenty of seemingly named companies didn’t do any good.
Remarkable Hire – a company with almost 10 years of history but not and is still here to continue providing great help to many people. As we all know, it was never easy to look for jobs available especially when we don’t know where to start looking, finding information and applying for them.
Failure reason: despite the company continue to exist it can not cope with the number of job ads and important information required, so not always provide reliable and actual data.
Work Simple – worked like other social media sites where employees can share goals, capture accomplishments, get and give feedback (both at the peer and manager-to-employee levels), leave comments.
Failure reason: they couldn’t turn cashflow positive and they ran out of money. In addition to that, they were not able to compete on the social performance management market, had adoption problems with users couldn’t log in and use the product. Besides, the start-up was naked in the mirror with a much lower number of real customers than signed up ones.
Thrive.ly – a web app to make it extremely simple to exchange constructive feedback with the people you work with. It built an MVP, grew to 500+ users, and raised a bit of pre-seed funding, but didn’t have the runway to keep going.
Failure reason: many other startups in the “social/agile performance management” space have had similar challenges with product engagement.