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October 11, 2022

Can a merely mobile app make a startup successful?

In an era where almost everyone owns a smartphone, whether a  startup or business should have a mobile app or not is clear as ever. There are many businesses that made their success starting by owning a mobile app. In this article, we will show you the example of Tastemade a startup that success raised 80milon dollars in a Series D funding round just after a short amount of time launching their mobile app.

Tastemade Overview

With more than 300 million monthly global viewers mostly on mobile and streaming television platforms, Tastemade earns 700 million minutes watched every month. This makes Tastemade as of the most successful modern media company ever.

In 2014 when Tastemade - a startup two years old, announced $25 million in series C funding, led by Scripps Networks Interactive with participation by Liberty Media Corporation, bringing the startup's total funding to $40 million. Just a year after, they secured a $40 million Series D funding round led by Goldman Sachs, with participation from existing investors Redpoint Ventures, and Raine Ventures…making the total funding double the number they earn last year: $80 million which is nearly 100mil in today due to inflation.

What Made Them Today

To find out more behind the scene things about their crazy success, let's head back to 2012 when they started everything. Back then Tiktok didn’t exist yet and Youtube was still the video content king on the Internet. Under the leadership of Larry Fitzgibbon, Steven Kydd, and Joe Perez, Tastemade was born as a multi-channel on Youtube, mostly about high-quality food and cooking videos. Soon after, they branched out into posting highly engaging videos to Facebook — most videos are 1–2 minutes long, but there are plenty that is even shorter. You can think of it as TikTok and Youtube shorts that only show cooking videos.

They did great on both of these social media platforms and started to gain attention from the public but something was still missing. Their foray into mobile apps was, at first, less successful. In 2013 they launched the Tastemade Video City Guide, a social network for food lovers. This app was merged with their Facet Travel Video app in 2015, but that was shut down a year later as well. However, everything changed when they launched another app in 2015, simply called Tastemade. To everyone's surprise, this app achieved the success that is brothers failed to and opened one-in-a-lifetime opportunities for the Tastemade startup.

Tastemade mobile app

This app is a truer extension of the original business, making it easy to find recipes, and watch the cooking shows Tastemade is known for, on a mobile phone. For the App Mobile version, users can not only see the entire recipe with all the steps. The cooking videos on the app are also longer and have better quality. Tastemade also develops cooking programs on the mobile version to meet the increasing demand for delicious food from users.

This app was born to resolve all the things that their videos on Facebook and Youtube and their site couldn’t do. After some research, they found out that, all the videos on Youtube and Facebook were too short so people can’t actually follow the cooking tutorial. They merely watch it for entertainment purposes and probably forget it afterward. With that in mind, they have created an app with a vision that everybody can learn how to cook their favorite meal while don’t have to bring their laptop every time to the kitchen and struggle to follow the cooking tutorial. Thanks to this invention, their users increased hugely in the blink of an eye. This was the main reason why they received so much money in the funding series.

Capi Product Point Of View

Despite being one of the most famous mobile apps for food, their mobile app still has some negative feedback. You can see their review is actually not very good with 2.6/5 stars so far on CH play. In the comment section, there are almost 50 people found:

“The concept is good. The recipes are new and innovative. But The app is hard to navigate. I would be very far into a category searching and reading recipes when I'd make the mistake of hitting their "back" button instead of my own phone's and it would send me all the way back to their home screen. It sounds small but it was beyond irritating every time.”

Apparently, their User Experience is not doing very well but this does not affect the company that much as their revenue continues to grow stronger every year. But for startups, not focusing on UX  can be one of the main reasons why you fail in the marketplace. According to statistics, up to 90% of startups fail in the first 2 years. One of the many reasons is that, they only focus on building the product and forget that the product is used by the users, so focusing on the user experience factor is a must, as there are more and more mobile apps out there, and all of them can actually have the same features as yours. 

With that being said, even a big company can still have flaws and problems, in order to succeed, a startup must be focusing on the user experience all the time, especially at the time beginning of their business. If you currently don’t have a mobile app or have a bad user experience one, why don’t start fixing things with us?

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