App Review: Buzztale – creating rich, visual, curated stories in real-time

Rachel Hearne

At the recent eCommerce Futures conference Forecasting Fashion we tried out new storytelling app Buzztale, which was recently selected as winner of Seedcamp Berlin (see their pitch here). Designed to be used as a content marketing tool for live events, the app enables brands and media to leverage the buzz around live events using their smartphone, by creating real-time, branded, embeddable stories. Content can be curated from Twitter and Facebook, and also from text, photos and videos uploadable by multiple users. The desktop tools enable users to login, access stories they have created and enable moderation of a story to edit specific content and the list of users that can contribute to a story. An embeddable version can also be configured for your own website or blog.

We got started by uploading some photos to populate the story with content prior to the event, and then set up a Twitter stream for the story by adding our hashtag #ECF13. From then on instead of using Twitter during the event, we wrote every tweet via Buzztale, and then published to Twitter straight from the app. We also pulled in Twitter content from audience members at our event and published them to our story. I took photos during the day, and uploaded them on the fly and this is where the story started to become more visually appealing and work most effectively.

Pros

The app was easy to use, and the design is clean, sleek and simple. Uploads were quick to display and embedding the story into our own site was a simple and effective way to drive traffic and generate interest around the event. It was easy to play with colour schemes and layout to fit in with our brand.

Cons

The app is designed so that stories are created via smartphone, but it would be nice to be able to upload content using the desktop version too. I’d also like to see a feature that allows content boxes to be repositioned after uploading. At points during the event I got a bit tweet-happy and before I uploaded photos the story looked a bit text heavy – which the app is currently not optimised for.

Verdict

This is a really handy little app and a great way of sharing what our event was like in real time – we loved the sense of vibrant immediacy. Traffic to our website increased by 50% on the event day and 63% the next day compared to the previous event, despite the previous event having higher attendance.

The app is still being tested and developed, so it will be interesting to see how its features change and improve over time.

Have a look at the Forecasting Fashion Buzztale story here.