The Yik Yak App—All the Kids Are Using It

Could the regional network be your next big marketing opp?

Okay, so maybe not all the kids are using it.

Yesterday JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky passed this article around on email—a network-by-network breakdown of what social platforms teens actually like and use, written by an actual teenager (19-year-old college student Andrew Watts).

And Yik Yak, Watts claims, is where the group chatter is really happening on college campuses. 

The Yik Yak logo (courtesy of Yik Yak)

“There’s an advertisment I see often on Twitter for Yik Yak that says something along the lines of ‘everyone’s on it before class starts.’ And I can 100 percent reaffirm that this is true. And everyone’s on it during class, talking about the class they’re in. And everyone’s on it after class to find out what’s going on around campus.”

So what is Yik Yak? Could it be the next big platform for marketers? History has proven that the early adopters of major social networks are always, always teens and college kids, after all.

The free smartphone app, which launched in 2013 and is available for iOS and Android, allows users to anonymously create and view discussion threads (called yaks) within a 5-mile radius. Users can add to the conversation, start a new one, or “vote up” or “vote down” yaks (akin to liking a post).

Watts says it’s the pseudo anonymity that appeals to teens: “While it hasn’t reached the popularity of other networks, Yik Yak is a powerful contender that people actually use,” he writes. “Often I see people post about the fight for anonymity with other applications such as Secret. I can tell you that I do not know a single person in my network who uses that application. People reference Yaks all the time.”

Yik Yak’s already geographically configured radius seems tailor-made for retailers to do business on—your youthful local audience is right there. But, as with all social networks, avoid hard sells and posting too often. 


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JCK Senior Editor

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