April 4th, 2014

Mobile Q&A App Jelly Uses People to Solve Problems

by Regina DiPerna

Jelly is a question-and-answer-based social network that allows users to crowd source across social networks instantly and visually. Founded by Twitter co-founder Biz Stone, Jelly has attracted a lot of buzz since its inception in January. It is not only a fun, productive experience for users, but it also puts a new spin on seeking answers on the internet. If you have been seeking a more personal Q&A experience, or you’re looking for a fresh way to grow your business’s social reach, Jelly is the app you’ve been waiting for.

This concept might sound familiar—Yahoo Answers, Quora, and even text-message-based ChaCha have all tried their hand at the Q&A format. Then, of course, there’s Google, which has become the de facto way to seek knowledge on seemingly every subject in the universe. However, there are several things that make Jelly unique and let it fill a niche in the social network market:

1)   Questions are accompanied by a photo. Say you want to identify the artist of a painting you come across. Rather than guessing at what to type into a search engine, Jelly lets you can snap a photo and someone in your network can answer. In fact, answering users can even draw on your photos. This unique feature allows Jelly to fill gap in the market that search engines can’t, at least not yet.

2)   It’s community based. Although Google is often a good source for relevant reviews, information, and more, Jelly allows you to ask people in your network for solutions. It uses your Facebook and Twitter accounts to help you build a relevant user audience for your question, connecting you to both friends, and friends of friends. This allows you to crowd source information across social networks instantly.

3)   You can also outsource questions. If a Jelly user comes across a question they can’t answer, but they know someone who can, they can share the question via text, email, Facebook, or Twitter. This not only helps the question get answered, but it also encourages users to organically promote the Jelly app.

4)   Engagement is built in to the concept. Although you can ask or answer as much or as little as you want, Jelly is designed to get users to do something, rather than passively take in content. There is no limit on how many times a question can be answered, allowing users to consider multiple opinions and create a conversation.

5)   It’s a short-form mobile app. Unlike other Q&A platforms, Jelly was born as an app, and is designed exclusively for mobile use. This facilitates instant use when questions arise. With a 240-character limit, Jelly is nicely situated between long-form networks like Yahoo Answers and Quora and microblogging networks like Twitter. Answers are concise and informational, which is exactly what users are looking for.

Even at this stage, Jelly provides businesses with a truly unique way to engage their users. Founder Biz Stone has said the Jelly team is planning a lot of updates to enhance users’ experience and expand Jelly’s capabilities even more. With an all-star lineup of investors and over 8,000 users on the first day alone, Jelly is quickly rising in the ranks of major social networks.