Right from writer’s block to self doubt over choice of words and style leaves budding authors in a fix. Not to mention the fear of writing lengthy pieces that often engulfs writers.
Well, not anymore, says startup DailyThem.es, a social writing platform that leverages peer-to-peer knowledge sharing to help users improve their writing skills by penning 100 words daily on their favourite topic. Users can track their progress and also get feedback from other authors.
The Philadelphia-based startup received seed money from an angel investor in Hong Kong. While it is currently not actively seeking funding, DailyThem.es stated it is in conversations with a couple of investors.
Hassan Siddiq, CEO, DailyThem.es
“Twitter and Weibo almost have the same product but are restricted to English-speaking and Chinese-speaking audiences respectively. We believe that more Chinese, Koreans, and Arabs would like to express themselves on the global internet, but are not confident enough to do so in written English,” said Hassan Siddiq, CEO, DailyThem.es.
The startup claims to be the first social networking website with a learning element. Services of DailyThem.es are currently targeted at students or professionals who are new to blogging in English or are currently blogging in their native language. “Half of our users come from Asia Pacific,” he added.
Where is the money?
To keep the moolah flowing into the company, it has introduced premium upgrade options through which users can get professional feedback on their writing. Also, users preparing for international exams such as Cambridge IGCSE, IELTS and TOEFL can get analytical data on their writing and detailed reviews from selected writers and tutors at a particular fee.
With its set of services, DailyThem.es competes with light blogging websites such as Tumblr, and from a learning perspective, with websites such as Coursera and Udacity.
Asia, the next destination for the US-based startup
Currently based in USA, DailyThem.es plans to expand its footprints in Asia. “We have recruited our first team member in Hong Kong, and she is actively managing our digital presence on Chinese social media (Weibo and Douban),” added Siddiq.
The startup aims to build a full marketing and development team in Hong Kong in the second half of 2014. Siddiq shared that they wish to focus on China and Vietnam in 2014, where they already have a few schools using their premium model. The website also plans to expand in Latin America in the future.
Presently in its Beta stage, DailyThem.es’s premium services are priced at US$48 per student per month. The service allows students to blog either on current affairs or on prompts mapped to their curriculum.
With a number of users signing in from their mobile devices, DailyThem.es aims at allocating dedicated development resources to roll out a cross-platform app.