Vero App Review with Pros and Cons

The question everyone is asking seems to be, “Will VERO steal people away from Instagram?”

It certainly doesn’t make sense for people to jump ship completely from Instagram where they have built up their content, engagement and relationships.  Over time though, VERO could easily become a mainstay within social platforms that brands will need to consider.

VERO has definitely addressed a lot of the issues that we love to hate about Instagram and you will see those listed in the PROs list below.

PROS:
1. Posts are shown in chronological order rather than using an algorithm that decides for you what you want to see. This is perhaps the biggest PLUS that everyone will love.
2. The ability to share in multiple ways makes it a lot more versatile than Instagram.
Post directly from a web page when you see something interesting, or
Post a book review, or
Share music that you are currently listening to, or
Post to friends your location and ask them to meet up… 
The posting ideas are endless and will make it a very engaging platform if people embrace it in that way.
3. You can decide how good of a connection someone is and then only share specific content with chosen connections. So what you share with close friends can be very different from what you share with an acquaintance, or what you share with a follower who you have never met or talked to.
4. In its simplicity, it is an easy app to use.

VERO Profile Screens

CONS:
1. It is still in the beta phase, so there are still a lot of bugs, and is definitely a bit sluggish if the app even opens at all. (Admittedly though, I am using the latest S8 phone, which even Instagram has issues with.)
2. They don’t have the photo filters that other apps do when uploading a photo, so what you see is what you get. Not a big con, since there are so many other apps for that.
3. They don’t have content police yet, and so you may see some unwanted imagery when you do a hashtag search.
4. VERO is currently just an app for the smartphone and not available on tablet or desktop.
5. There is no exclusivity to your profile handle. There can be multiple “Heather Taylor’s” or “HT Designs” for example, so you could become hard to find. Since VERO is just an app with no exclusive handles, there isn’t a specific link that you can send out to family, friends and colleagues. There is also no way to currently link to your website or blog.
A lot of the people that are jumping on VERO are the ones that we love to hate on Instagram. They are too busy trying to get you to follow them without following you first, that they have forgotten what social media was intended for in the first place.

Like any social platform, it is still going to be about the quality of content. Garbage in is still garbage out.

There have been so many social apps that started off with a bang and then petered out to nothing so VERO will be an interesting development to watch.  This app does seem to have more mainstream appeal than some of the past ones, but whether it will be able to beat out Instagram only time will tell.

Would love to hear your thoughts on your experience in the comments below. This blog post will be in a constant state of change as I continue to play with VERO.

Brick and Mortar Retailers Should Embrace the Smartphone

Independent Retailers need to embrace the smartphone

What is showrooming?
People visiting and using a physical store as a showroom, so they can touch and feel the product, and then go away to  buy on-line.

I have heard this term over and over again by independent retailers who are using it as an excuse for their declining business. In reality, more people actually research on-line first and then go to purchase in-store.

Many independent retailers are scared of the smartphone and what they think that means for them and their business.  In actual fact, knowing that the smartphone is a permanent connection between the retailer and the consumer, they should be embracing it. Smartphones allow an exchange of feedback and conversation with each other.

5 Suggestions on how to use this knowledge to your advantage:

  1. People research product on-line first, so make sure your website is up to date with product information including features, specs and pricing.
  2. Since people look at dealer locators and where to buy product, make sure your website is optimized so that customers can find you in the first place.
  3. Have a newsletter signup bar on your website to help grow your database so that you can keep your customers informed about new arrivals and brand promotions.
  4. Keep your social media accounts up to date and make sure that you respond regularly to people who tweet/chat about you and their in-store experience.
  5. Make it easy for your customers to research product right in your store, with the use of tools such as QR codes and Blippar apps.

These are just a couple ideas that will help keep your customers coming back for more.

Check out these two articles from L2 INC for more insights:
1. Bringing Luxury Customer Service to Mobile
2. Retailers Mostly Fail at Mobile Checkout