How BBM Channels Are Leading the Convergence of Social and Mobile Media


Mobile and social media are changing many things, including mass marketing. Advertisers are quickly abandoning TV, radio and print publications in favour of the more precise targeting, better performance and lower costs of mobile and social media.

BBM Channels is a social networking feature inside BBM that combines the best of mobile and social in one great feature.

bbm channel

Like a Facebook page or Tumblr blog, a BBM Channel is a place to post messages and pictures, and also interact with people. Because it lives inside BBM, Channels is all about facilitating conversations. Just like BBM chats help you connect with friends, family and colleagues, Channels can help you connect with brands you like and communities that share your interests.

BBM makes it easy to do both things—and also keep them in their own separate corners.

I’ve got a post over at the Business Blog that explains what Channels are all about, both from a how-you-use it perspective, and a why-its-good-for-business perspective.

The gist is that as we work to improve BBM, two things are most important. First, the app has to remain easy and satisfying to use. Right now, we’re looking good. We know that because people who use BBM love it: 72% of them use it every day. That metric is our daily active user (DAU) rate, an industry standard, and it beats the DAU of both WhatsApp and Facebook. Obviously, that’s valuable for us, for users, for communities, and for advertisers.

Second, BBM is only as useful as the number of people and companies that use it. The more, the better. Channels are helping to boost BBM’s “network effect” by bringing more people and businesses to the platform, giving everyone more tools, more features, more ways to connect, and more reasons to stick around.

Tap into your BBM Channels today to see the range of things going on. There are over 900,000 Channels, about everything under the sun: sports teams, gaming communities, magazines that promote content, retailers offering deals, and lots more. Subscribe to the channels you like, and you’ll see their updates in your Feeds. You can even start one of your own about your family, friends, work, hobbies, or whatever floats your boat. Once you publish it, people who enjoy the same things you do can connect to receive your updates.

Today, it’s all about sharing information, but in the near future, Channels should be able to take you one step further, directly to transactions. Say you’re subscribed to the Amazon channel, which offers up a daily deal that you see in your Feeds. Let’s say the deal is a great price on a package of snorkelling equipment. And you need some for your upcoming vacation to the Great Barrier Reef. You simply click the post, and it takes you to a page with more information where you can examine the merchandise, and then redeem the offer and buy the product with one click — just like you can with sticker packs at the BBM Shop (also inside your BBM).

Exciting stuff. Read all about it over at the business blog.

About Matthew Talbot

I am the Senior Vice President - Emerging Solutions at BlackBerry. I have extensive International Management, Sales and Marketing background in Mobility and Cloud technologies, Financial Services, Telecommunications, and Content in both a “Start-Up” and Public company environment. This includes stints as a senior executive at SAP, Sybase, Mobile 365 and others.

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