How do we make Byte more accessible to new users?

Hi all,

Today I had a conversation with an old Viner who is pretty upset with the current way Byte is formatted. His main argument is that Byte is not creating an app in which anyone can load, shoot a video, edit the video (in app), and post. To see his side on things, yes this app currently does not have great or any video editing tools. So if a new user from other platforms were to come here and see all of us, myself included, posting items that are clearly edited outside of Byte, they may not have any motivation to try and create something theirselves. I personally believe it’s really not that hard to edit something outside of an app and upload it, but I’m also not the majority/common user. I believe the limitation on editing tools needs to be Changed before any other features like floating text, gifs, longer video durations, etc. are added.

The reason I bring all of this up is because I want to ensure this app is as inclusive as possible. With the new partner program and the issues stated above (both of which I am “guiltily” of) I can see how intimidating it would be for new users to want to even try to create things. Especially now that the “considered for you” posts are gone, so it’s likely no one sees their stuff.

I love this app, and love having a platform to create on again. I don’t want anyone taking this as me being negative towards it. I bring these items up because I want to help it grow. But growth has its pains, and right now this is one of them. I hope any fellow partners reading this can back me, and continue to encourage Byte to remain an inclusive space that everyone is welcome to.

To the entire Byte team,

Thank you again for everything you have done, continue to do, and will do in the future. I am so honored to be a partner and hope you do not see this post as me being ungrateful or against the app, because that would be farthest from the truth.

Everyone else,

Please let me know what you think!! I love this app and all of you!

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This is a very valid concern to have.

I remember back on Vine people used to knock on videos edited outside of app when it first introduced the feature to upload external videos. So to flip that where we’re able to start off already uploading externally and so many of us are fluffing them up past what just the in-app camera offers I can certainly see how that could be frustrating for a new or amateur user with no editing means or experience.

I have also felt that the app could really use better editing tools, especially clips. Not that I do conventional camera videos anymore but I do miss being able to point and shoot and move around and work with clips in editing on Vine. Being able to organize your clips and trim them individually, that alone would be an insane plus in my book.

Anyway, I know it’s all a process and the dev team are KILLING it with all that they do.

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I agree completely and appreciate this thread because I’m sure it is not easy as a partner to speak up like this (for fear of looking ungrateful, which you don’t…don’t worry)! I, too, believe more editing options would benefit the app greatly. Doesn’t have to be over the top things for now…just the basics. Even for someone like me who has Final Cut Pro, it’d be nice to not always have to go through that process from time to time.

Lastly, I really felt the sentence…”Especially now that the “considered for you” posts are gone, so it’s likely no one sees their stuff.” I personally get great engagement and support, but it’s because I take a large portion of time away from my family life, I use my entire lunch hour at work, and I wake up extremely early to engage with other people’s content. I don’t mind doing that because I like to support the amazing creators on this app, but most newcomers aren’t going to take those measures.

I’ve been ignored on this point but I’m going to keep hammering it home bc I think it’s beneficial to hear this from someone relatively new like me: the algorithm or a tab itself has to find a better way to help new creators get their stuff out there, or else they’re going to make five videos and dip. I’ve made 50 videos and one has gone on Spotlight. I can’t rely on the taste of those who choose Spotlight bc clearly their taste for content is not my taste. Humans like different things! So the only way I get engagement and action is by hard work. Again, I’m willing to put that hard work in…but I’d venture to say the large majority is not. New ppl don’t need hand me outs or freebies, but they do need a fighting chance IMO.

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This is a great idea and it would do a lot for the exclusiveness of the app. I myself create most of my Bytes off the app, even if it’s a simple dialog with 2 people because I’m able to layer the sound. It would be cool to see some more features in the app! :wink:

I love Byte, but there are some things that make it hard to get newcomers to stay on the app. The algorithm showing content from 3 months ago, and making it really hard for new Byters to grow on the app is also things, I think should be improved.

I’m also concerned about the Bytes marketing (which there doesn’t seem to be much of). I know that the Byte team has wanted to see the organic growth of the app before throwing a lot of money in marketing. I think it’s time to start actually doing some proper marketing for the app (Especially in these times where everyone’s bored at home). Tiktok is blowing up because of the quarantine, and I believe Byte could do the same! I could be wrong, but I wanna see this app have success, and right now it just doesn’t seem like anything is really happening.

None of this is meant to talk down about Byte, I just wanna share my concerns :smiley:

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If someone doesn’t have any videos of their own, make rebytes appear on their profile as if they posted it. If someone likes one of those videos while on their profile, give them a notification that someone liked a video they rebyted. This way they get the dopamine of getting notifications without actually needing to post. And that will in turn encourage them to post.

I think this is the same way Twitter handles retweets.

I also like some ideas @Lacieyl and others have come up with such as badges. Basically new users get badges next to their names so that we know they’re new. And we can give them more attention to welcome them to the app.

And then there’s the idea of giving new users their own category where their videos appear. And then encouraging existing users to view that category by using in-app rewards. “You viewed 20 videos in the New User category. Here’s 1 star!” Or something like that.

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That’s why I think “for your consideration” should be brought back. As for getting notifications on people liking something you rebyte I’m meh. I want to inspire people to create something themselves. But that’s just difference of opinion.

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I agree with the necessity of a solid video editing toolkit. It’s important for anyone to be able to jump into the app and have the right tools to make a video that is close to what they have in mind. I think that before Byte goes v1.0, it will definitely need:

  • Clip adjustment/arrangement/management/whatever you wanna call it.
  • Ability to upload music. I foresee some incredible challenges with this one, especially since it’s much “harder to get away” with using copyrighted music these days. I think the team will have to figure out how to handle DMCA requests first (I’d probably just say either archiving/muting the video). Byte beats definitely helps this, and it’s a great solution, but we’ve still got some things to work out.
  • Robust text tools. We’re getting there. I think we’re only missing the ability to customise the text. Otherwise, we have actually already have decent text tools, and I personally think it’s enough.

So what I’m hearing here is that you hope that the Byte team can focus on core video-editing functionality before spending effort on “extra tools” (such as the floaties, GIFs, filters).

I agree that getting a toolkit for allowing anyone to put together a great video is important. However, perhaps that is where we as the people on Byte have to curb our expectations. The app is not v1.0. It’s like v0.2.8. We really are in Beta. We partners are Beta partners. We’re realistically testing out their partner program. We’re very early adopters. And the team is currently quite small and can only take on as much as they can. The alternative is that they stayed in closed beta and we wouldn’t have been able to upload whilst we wait for v1.0. I think I prefer where we are today, where we can upload.

This affects marketing decisions. No one in their right mind would market for a v0.2.8. So I would say curb the expectations here too, because we probably won’t see any marketing until the Byte team and all of their stakeholders (if they have investors, whether it be VC, private, or angel) are happy with the product.

A counterargument to your post would be that video editing apps are so readily available right now. But to counter that back, I would argue that well, you can make awesome videos in a couple of our main competitors apps.

But I do hear you, and I agree with your priorities. But I think we also need to manage our expectations.

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I was in favor of it being gone but I would love for it to come back if it only showed new users. If someone new posts a video and has a really good view to like ratio at the beginning (like 30 views and 5 likes or something), then show them in for your consideration tab to really boost them. I think that would be a great idea.

There are so many people in latest who have hilarious content who don’t get the likes they deserve.

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Exactly, I wish spotlight was aimed more towards people like that as well but I understand why it isn’t purposed that way.

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we’re on the same page

text tools and beats were the start, but we have planned ideas for trimming individual clips, removing them, crossfading audio between them, allowing audio overlap from one clip to another, and sound effects. these are at least 2 months out before we even start on some of them, because most of the team is focused on a non-creation feature right now

i don’t think we’ll focus on filters or effects any time soon because it’s honestly a ton of work and would prevent us from working on anything else

experimental things like floaties, beats, etc… we have to keep working on those. you never know what kind of new tool is going move the needle. floaties isn’t getting used much but beats are extremely popular. the only person working on experimental creation features at the moment is me, so it’s not holding anything back

the foundational tools i mentioned above are also necessary, but they’re also time consuming so we try to spread them out. and unfortunately as necessary as they are there’s also nothing exciting about them

also to be clear, the 16 second test really only did take about 20 minutes. we changed a few numbers and then put in a check to prevent beats on longer videos. so that one truly isn’t holding anything back :slight_smile:

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This is amazing! That’s exactly what I was hoping for!

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Just a little bit of “another opinion” to what Dom said, I do also think that it is important to test experimental things in parallel with building core functionality because we might stumble upon the feature that becomes an extremely valuable asset.

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Dom,

Thank you so much for taking time out of your day to respond. It really means a lot to all of us how much you and everyone else at Byte HQ is active within the community and aren’t afraid to open up dialogue with us and help explain things we may be nervous about/not fully understand.

As stated above, the only reason I bring this up is out a love for the app and wanting to continue to watch it to grow. And, as you already know, getting more and more new people to use it consistently is essential. So the 16s part is more a fear of increasing the intimidation for new users to use the app. Especially when things are being uploaded with external editing tools that new users may not feel comfortable using/care to download. I should’ve stated that separately as I did read your response last night about how long it took, apologies for that.

Not to be too redundant, but I love this app and the diversity in the content it brings, and want to continue supporting in anyway possible. I hope this did not come across as arrogant, negative, or accusing in anyway. Truly just want to see this app and community continue to grow into something even more beautiful than what it is now.

Thank you again Dom, for everything you and the team do :heart:

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If you want any help for lens or filter let me know

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Seconding that, I have very limited database/web development background and would be willing to help in anyway possible as well. Not promising any real skill but am willing to help the app anyway I can.

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And I can be their cheerleader

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I’m down to join : P

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Great topic/thread

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True

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I agree with you. I think that it would be a good idea to let rebytes show up on ppls profiles (especially those ppl that don’t have videos of their own). I also agree that getting notifications for a byte that was rebyted is a good thing as well. I remember Vine actually having this function.

We have to keep in mind that as much as we would like for everyone to post, not everyone wants to post. Some ppl just want to come to the app for entertainment purposes (which is perfectly okay). We love the fans just as much as the creators :pray: :blush: :pray:

Like you said, letting rebytes appear on their page, receiving notifications for rebytes (when someone likes (or rebytes your rebytes)) would be a good way for users that aren’t interested in posting to still have the satisfaction of getting notifications. The way it’s set up now, everyone has to post something, otherwise you’ll just have an empty profile. I feel like doing this could be a way to help ppl that aren’t interested in posting still feel involved. I feel like this could slightly help the retention rate go up a bit tbh.

Maybe at default when you install the app, rebytes could appear on your profile, but then if you are a creator and don’t want rebytes to appear on your profile (but you want them to only appear on the timeline like they are currently), you can change it in the settings to not allow rebytes on your profile.

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