Now with $2.5M Squawkin is fusing the best of social media & messaging into one app

Social media and messaging hybrid app Squawkin has just raised a $2.5 million seed round from friends and family. The company calls itself a “social messaging app” and believes it can cut through the noise in social media and messaging by combining the best of those two into one app.

Written by Garrett Reim
Published on Oct. 01, 2014
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Social media and messaging hybrid app Squawkin has just raised a $2.5 million seed round from friends and family. The company calls itself a “social messaging app” and believes it can cut through the noise in social media and messaging by combining the best of those two into one app.  
 
“There are big players like Facebook and Twitter, but people are still looking for other ways to connect and communicate with each other,” said Nishith Bhatt, chief marketing officer at Squawkin. WhatsApp’s rapid rise and the recent excitement around social media site Ello certainly shows that people are still eagerly anticipating something better.
 
Squawkin “takes the best of the social capability of a Facebook or Twitter: being able to find and connect with people without needing their phone number; being able to get in touch with people you haven’t seen in an long time; creating small forums for people to connect; and it combines them with really powerful communication features, like text, voice, and picture messages,” said Bhatt.
 
Moreover, Squawkin believes social media sites haven’t given users what they want, and that by focusing on speed, security and stability they should be able to build something better. The obvious qualities of speed and stability aside, Squawkin is working hard to develop its app around user security.
 
“We give the user a lot of flexibility and control over their privacy and security,” said Bhatt. Messages, or squawks as they are called, are encrypted and you can only communicate between people you know. 
 
By limiting possible inbound messages Squawkin believes it promotes an experience that users feel more control over. “We try to protect users, especially younger users, by only providing communication between people who are already friends,” said Bhatt.  
 
Users communicate with each other in three ways: direct messages between friends, group messages, and crowd messages, which are similar to a tweet. “We are finding a lot of people are making groups with their family and their extended family,” said Bhatt.
 
Squawkin feels a bit like a cross between WhatsApp and Instagram. Most unique to the app is the ability to combine multiple messaging mediums into one. Squawks on the app allow users to send combination messages; that is messages that have text, pictures and audio all in one. 
 
Squawkin is currently ambivalent about its future revenue model. Though they have a slight preference for going without advertisements and charging a small fee, Bhatt said most of the company’s time and money is being spent perfecting the product. Bhatt said they are not likely to put in much effort on marketing at this point, rather they would be happy with steady organic growth. Given the steady churn of messaging and social media apps that come and go Squawkin believes their ticket to longevity will be a focus on the backend technology and stable user acquisition. 
 
“We’re not looking to be one of those companies that is just around for two years,” said Bhatt. “We are in this for the long term.”
 
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