Wimp.com sounds a little uninspiring doesn’t it? If you’ve never heard of it, you probably couldn’t guess what the website does. You may even be reluctant to click that link.
I’m not going to tell you what they do just yet, what I am going to do is give you some numbers. According to Alexa, Wimp.com is in the top 1,000 websites in the US and the top 2,200 in the world. They have over 1.5 million likes on Facebook. The current version of wimp’s iPhone app has a 5 star rating from 3,747 ratings.
And at first glance it is an awful website. It breaks every digital marketing rule in the book. It’s a video-sharing site that posts five videos a day and has only one rule; videos must be suitable for all ages. Sounds simple and looks even simpler, but its popularity is difficult to fathom at first glance. So let’s take a look.
From a design point of view, this is as bad as it gets. There’s almost no design here. It’s just a list of videos. Digital marketing wisdom says you should create sites that grab users attention. It should have a slick design that demonstrates what you do succinctly and attractively. It also says you need a menu bar to allow users to navigate the site and find what they want. If you find any of these things on wimp.com, please let me know.
Alongside the design elements, every digital marketer will tell you that you need images and color. Your website needs to leap off the screen and stick in your memory. Wimp.com doesn’t even use thumbnails for its videos.
Digital marketers will also tell you that you need to keep users on the site. You do that through content and functionality. Most video sharing sites allow you to create accounts, comment, share or manipulate your video. Wimp.com has all the functionality of a telephone directory.
Maybe the website isn’t the reason it’s so popular. Maybe those 1.5 million Facebook users drive it up the Alexa rankings. Well the Facebook page certainly looks a lot more inviting, but if you hang around there long enough you’ll see it breaks digital marketing rules too. We’re always telling people to engage with friends and followers. Telling them you have to get involved in the conversation. Wimp.com post videos from their site. They don’t comment, they don’t post status updates, they don’t even embed the videos.
Another digital marketing rule that many marketers live by is the need to engage across all networks. You need to engage and access users all over the social landscape to drive business. Wimp.com tweeted once in 2012.
Of course social isn’t the only place you can create a fan base these days. Wimp.com’s app is extremely successful; maybe that’s their secret. You’ve probably guessed by now that isn’t the case. The app is about as run of the mill as they come. It looks just like every other video sharing app. It’s the only part of Wimp’s output that offers actual thumbnails. Which actually makes it less unique as a mobile app.
Mobile is a growing field in digital marketing, but one rule is developing. You need to do something cool with you app. It’s no good creating an app that just links back to your site, it needs to offer mobile only features. Wimp.com’s app lets you view, search or browse videos. And, that’s it.
That just leaves us with the content. The content on wimp.com is far from unique. It’s all uploaded or shared by users, but it’s not necessarily user created. The only unifying factor is that all videos are suitable for all ages. That’s where digital marketing rules start getting ticked. The content is relevant to everyone, and you can search to find the types of videos you want to see.
The videos also provide a range of uses. It’s not just a list of 10-second gags. There are some really useful and interesting videos posted here. When you arrive at wimp.com you’re bound to find something you like. Because it’s all about the content.
That might just be the secret. When Google tell webmasters and digital marketers how to build websites, they ask for useful and relevant content. And wimp.com has that in spades. Even if it does look awful and breaks every digital marketing rule in the book.
Do you want to see results like Wimp.com’s with a more attractive looking product? Then see how SiliconCloud can help.
Post by: Eoin Keenan