Israeli startup Roojoom helps users to create, discover and consume their kind of content in guided tour fashion
One of the internets greatest benefits is also one of its most significant disadvantages. Today, users are inundated with mountains of information, billions of websites. Every random search has you sifting through piles of extraneous stuff with no guarantee that you’ll find the particular kind of content that you’re looking for.
Roojoom presents users with a platform incorporating all the relevant information of a particular topic under one roof, allowing users, prospective customers and even companies to present all relevant information to them and about them, in a single place.\
Connect the dots
If a user wants to find the answer to one particular factoid or another, a simple search will do./ But If a user wants to research a topic in-depth, be provided with thorough overviews from substantial sources, they have to really put in the research hours.
Roojoom is an Israeli based startup and platform that allows for the simple colating, arranging and sharing of multiple links on the same topic, without getting lost in the depths of the Internet by opening 10 different tabs and hoping from one to the other. Roojoom offers users an online tool to which they can use to create a guided tour of links and content that they feel would serve, collectively and sequentially, as the best way to tell a specific story from a specific point of view.
Users bring together stories, articles, videos and interesting content, and places them within a specific order and under a unifying theme, along with comments and personal insights – all being updated and shared in real time.
Here’s how it works: After a brief registration, users create Roojooms based on different themes according to their interests. For example, you can create a technological Roojoom including all your favorite sites, create a track of all the recipes you want to use as you prep for the weekend. Create a family Roojoom where your parents can follow the milestone filled life of their grandchildren as it unfolds. The system supports dozens of different languages.
From a business perspective, marketing managers (who are actually one of the primary user types Roojoom had in mind while developing their platform) can build a path for explaining and selling the idea, story, stock or product of the company; including articles, videos and even specific pages from the company itself. Users can get to know the company from respectable third party sources but in a highly guided and controlled fashion. Tours can end with an option to purchase stock or products.
If users don’t have the time to manually set up their Roojoom, the company offers a browser plugin that allows the user to add content on the fly during unrelated browsing sessions with single click functionality.
It’s important to clarify that currently the product is in its beta, so you may encounter a few hiccups in the smoothness of the platform’s functioning but the company insists it’s working non-stop to improve its product and encourages users to share with them any features, options and problems that they believe should be included or dealt with accordingly.
Mitigating the load
Roojoom was founded in March of 2013 by CEO Yuval Shemesh, Head of Product Rami Ricanati and CTO Or Meirov. The team, whose average age of 36 (unusual in the Israeli startup landscape) are all family men with children and the shared goal of solving the Internet’s storytelling problem.
The company has just just completed their tour as part of the Microsoft Ventures Accelerator Israel program. After launching their beta a couple of months ago, the company has come a long way being voted the most promising startup at Microsoft Ventures Accelerator’s Demo Day just this week. Presently the company has hundreds of active users and thousands of Roojooms created. Content is regularly shared amongst users through a variety of media and social channels.
The competitive landscape is not all that empty, with companies like Scoop.it, Pearltrees, List.ly, Storify and others allowing users to gather content from around the web and arrange them by topic. Unlike their competitors though, Roojoom enables users to arrange content along a single track that allows for the separation of various subjects from start to finish.
Yuval explains what he feels is the real benefit of the Roojoom experience; with competitors a user creates reading lists, but in the end the reader opens every element in this list in a separate window and there’s no ability to determine what order to read the content in in order to be taken along journey that builds a certain perspective. Contrast that with Roojoom which holds the reader’s hand through a coherent and sequential discovery experience – and the effect is that much more powerful.
The primary focus of the company is in Digital Marketing. Publishers can embed Roojooms directly into their websites keeping their use. Shemesh adds that the data shows the average user spending 4x more time on Roojooms than average websites and consuming far more information. Roojooms remain branded even while users navigate along a track from source to source with an OTT (Over The Top) frame that includes the publishers logo, graphical theme, contact info, and other brand defining elements.
Roojoom has raised seed from a number of private investors and while the company has a number of large clients who have begun to use its services, they’re still researching options for monetization strategy.
Video: What is Roojoom?
This article was originally posted in Hebrew as part of Geektime’s Microsoft Azure series