Populr, a new micro-publishing service launching today, works under the assumption that people work really hard to manage their communication with a set of tools (email, SMS, and websites) that are inadequate on their own.
The service provides users with the ability to create “POPs,” one-page sites that allow you to embed media (videos, PDF, photos, and any other file) and easily customize the layout in a matter of minutes. When you send a POP to someone, Populr’s platform tracks when they open the page, and what they accessed while they were on it. There are a handful of initial themes (sort of like you’d find with WordPress.com or Tumblr) to help you get started.
“We’re not trying to replace e-mail anymore than the iPad replaced laptops,” said Populr founder Nicholas Holland in an interview with VentureBeat. “At the same time, I think people have legitimate need for doing really simple websites that they aren’t really able to do (or do well) on WordPress. There needs to be something in the middle.”
POPs are meant to be created quickly, which is a key detail in what separates them from blogging service like WordPress and Tumblr. The point is that you can create a one-page website in the same time you can write an informative email, which will be far more useful to both the sender and recipient.
Holland said there’s a big opportunity for “micro-publishing” because the working world needs a better tool for communicating. The startup already has almost 80 paying clients, including sales teams, event promoters, and project managers. For example, someone working sales can send a pop after meeting with potential customers, and change their strategy based on what people are actually examining. Also, project managers can use the tool to find out if their own clients are reading crucial materials prior to meetings to ensure than no one is wasting time rehashing things.
As for generating revenue, Populr has multiple premium tiers for a monthly fee ($12-$50) that offer more users per account, additional POPs, better security, and more. Like Yammer, the enterprise-level tier also charges to add more users on an account. There is a free version of the service than anyone can sign up for that offers three free POPs.
Founded in 2012, the Nashville, Tenn.-based startup has eight full-time employees and has previously raised $475,000 in funding. Holland said he’d like to raise a series A round of funding in the near future for additional development as well as marketing the service to new clients.
Check out a demo video of the service below.
Communications image via khz/Shutterstock