Rally, a startup headed by gaming entrepreneur Kevin Chou, unveiled its Taki platform in February for creators, athletes, and celebrities to interact with their fans. And now it is unveiling a way for fans to communicate with the stars via images or videos.
As a rethought celebrity network, Rally promises to let creators of videos keep nearly 100% of every fan transaction. The company promises a new era for personalized content, extending well beyond the birthday shoutouts you get on other platforms (ahem, Cameo).
Taki’s aim is to remove the hurdles between creators and fans and generate new income streams for creators. Taki is looking to rapidly evolve video interactions from soundbite birthday wishes with high fees to something much more community driven.
The idea is to allow fans to pay for access to their favorite creator, athlete, or celebrity. The fans can ask a direct question, have them teach a skill, or just ask advice. In an era of hyperconnectivity, this should be simple, but unfortunately, it’s been made needlessly complicated by social platforms that are too big to care about any individual creator or fan, Rally said.
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Taki already has a roster of more than 150 digital celebrities. In March, Taki saw a 234% increase in orders, and in April it saw a 50% increase in talent onboarding.
Fans can book short video messages from a roster of more than 150 digital celebrities, ranging from quick shoutouts to more personalized content. Each member of the roster sets their own price, chooses which requests to fulfill, and makes videos on their own time. While other sites take a tremendous cut of each booking, Taki’s roster keeps 95.5% of each booking, Rally said.
In addition to written text, fans submitting an order can now link to an Instagram post, marking the first time a fan can include a static image or video in their request.
The new product features will allow for interactive elements, including a new duets feature, enhanced interactivity for shoutouts, AMAs (ask me anything), and memes. The celebrities span multiple sectors including music, fitness, beauty, and gaming.
Mahesh Vellanki, general manager of Taki, said in a statement that personalized videos are a nascent category and these new product enhancements position Taki as an enabling tool for digital celebrities to connect with fans and earn money. For fans, it can carry tremendous value to hear a celebrity say your name and create a custom video just for you.
Once completed, fans will receive the Instagram video or image they submitted side by side with the personalized video from their favorite digital celebrity. They will then be able to share across their social channels or simply enjoy in private.
The celebrities include athletes (Carlos Boozer, Nate Robinson, Corey Clement, Daniel Cormier), YouTubers (JustRandomEveryDay, Emily Ghoul, Travis Atreo, Megan Lee, Richie Le), and artists (Danny Worsnop, Yoandri, DJ Envy, Year of the Ox, Drew Seeley, DJ Infamous). Taki is currently invite only for creators, but interested digital celebrities can join the waitlist here.