The Future of Apps Is Snapfix (10 Rules To Live By)

There was this great commercial on TV the other night for an app I had never heard of. It's called "SnapFix,"and it's so brilliant I can't even believe they really did this.

You take a picture of the problem you're having at home, and Angie's List finds someone automatically who can fix it for you. 

That's incredible! It saves so much time! 

In the old days, if you were lucky, you'd have a single "handyman" who could fix "everything." And you were at their mercy, because you didn't know what they were doing and probably weren't home all day to watch, either.

Angie's List revolutionized the whole process of hiring help with its reviews. Suddenly there is a verified database of people who are joining together to provide feedback on contractors, so you know what to expect in advance.

But then Angie's List went a step further. I don't know what their revenue model is, but someone must have realized that the real goldmine is to make it stupidly, incredibly easy to hire help for your home. You don't have to Google the type of service, just take a photo and Angie's List will do the rest. They are the intermediary, adding value to both sides.

Whether it's successful in the end or not, here are 10 lessons we can derive from this incredible idea:
  1. User Comes First: App is focused on helping the user do something - one thing - one focus.
  2. Ease of Use: App is incredibly, stupidly easy to use.
  3. Interactivity: There is an interactive element, such as taking a photo.
  4. Intelligence: There is a "smart" element, such as the app figuring out what kind of service provider is needed based on taking a photo.
  5. Service Revenue: App drives revenue to a service provider.
  6. Synergy: App and brand together accomplish more than one by itself - 1 + 1 = 3.
  7. Uniqueness: App has a distinct brand name.
  8. Endorsement: App is launched through supportive integration with a well-known brand.
  9. Cross-Media: App is promoted through social media and traditional media, such as TV.
  10. Innovation - Industry Creation: App creates a new category of service - there isn't even a name for an industry called "take a photo and find a service provider."

* All opinions my own.