Metapic offers a tool for bloggers to tag a product in photos without having to create links in the text manually. Besides getting a much more aesthetically neat blog and giving the blogger an opportunity to earn money, it also makes it possible for the reader to click on a specific product and be directly transferred to its online store. What started as a fun project in 2012 at Chalmers Innovation Startup Camp, a 10 week program at Chalmers University of Technology, has developed into a growing company with an interest of digital marketing. CEO Filip Askviken and his colleagues at metapic.se see great potential in developing the field of online blogging in combination with advertisement.
How did you come up with the idea for metapic.se?
I have always had an interest in fashion and interior design. The idea started in 2012 when I was skimming through some blogs. Advertising that is being frequently used in blogs today was created a long time ago, as banners at the side of the page. That is quite boring. As a reader you do not want to see that, since it often is perceived as disturbing. At the same time, many readers asked where the blogger had bought a certain product, and where to find it. Then we thought that something could be done in this field.
“E-retailers are willing to pay for traffic to their site, readers want to be able to find what they are looking for, and bloggers want to earn money in a way that doesn´t disturb the content on their blog. These are our three wins.”
What strategies do you use for marketing?
You could say that we are a supplier to blog portals. They integrate our services and together we onboard their bloggers. In that sense, Metapic becomes a natural part of the bloggers’ tools.
What is your company´s ambition?
At the moment, Metapic is still in an early stage. The aim is to be THE platform for native ads in digital media. There are still a lot of possibilities of developing advertisement techniques. Our aim is to help bloggers to earn money in a more aesthetically stylish way without “selling their soul”; they can decide for themselves what they want to advertise. With our product the blogger can search among hundreds of online stores.
“Our ambition is to adapt advertisement techniques for bloggers and let them decide their content for themselves.”
What kind of response have you got so far?
The response has been really good. Today, over 6.000 bloggers use our product and they are overall positive to it. What we do is that we pay the blogger for every click he or she receives on their blog for a certain product, regardless of what happens after that. We believe that it is up to us to deliver high quality leads and then for the e-retailer to convert that traffic so that it becomes a purchase in the end. It differentiates us from competitors who only pay the blogger if the click leads to a purchase.
“The blogger gets paid for every click.”
About 6.000 bloggers use your product today you say, how many more do you estimate exist?
There are about 600.000 bloggers in Sweden at the moment. It is being said that 75 percent of all women between the ages of 12-25 have sometime written a blog. There are many of them, and the number is constantly increasing.
“There is still a great market to take.”
The feedback we get from our users gives us a platform from where we can move on and continue to develop the company. There is an enormous potential for development. When we started in 2012 the blog portals and the bloggers were not quite ready for this kind of service, but during the last year a lot has happened in this field. More and more people are starting to connect to it.
Funding a business can be challenging, how is it done for Metapic?
We have been bootstrapping. That is, we are mostly funded by own revenues. We have also been fortunate to be donated money by Almi, Almi Invest, and Vinnova. First, we received money from Almi Invest and thereafter we also got some from Almi. In addition, we got a sum from Vinnova´s research- and growth project. We are very grateful to all of them for believing in our business.
Thank you Filip Askviken and metapic.se!
Filip Askviken (CEO)
Erik Axelsson (Lead Developer)
Edvin Brobeck (UX & Front-end)
Marcus Dalgren (Back-end)
David Hede (Design)
Jakob Lingnert (Business)