My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: How the JA$2 million EDirect App is listing Business events, products and services across Jamaica

Sunday, July 3, 2016

How the JA$2 million EDirect App is listing Business events, products and services across Jamaica

Imagine that there was an App that allows you to know whenever any business events, products or services are set to launch.

That's the premise behind the App EDirect, created by business partners Omar Green and Andrew Karim as reported in the article “EDirect: the happening App and one-stop shop”, published Wednesday, June 22, 2016 by Karena Bennett, The Jamaica Observer .

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The premise of the App and the accompanying website, in which the business partners Omar Green and Andrew Karim have invested some JA$2 million are surprisingly simple; it lists out business events, products or services happening on a given date in a given geographical area.

So what is the EDirect App all about?

EDirect App – Advertising website and App combo for business events, products or services

This is basically like an events website, but in App form, that tells you everything that's going on in the island.

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It's an App, it makes advertising cost effective, being as it works on iOS, Android and Blackberry platforms, advertising using Google Adsense to reach their target audience; Jamaicans wanting to know in real-time what's poppin'!

They attract users based on free access to content such as:

1.      Hotel accommodation
2.      Listing of events
3.      Photos
4.      Restaurants
5.      Shopping deals

In exchange for dishing out the where and when for business events, products or services, the App makes money by providing local advertising on their App, as these business events, products or services are themselves looking for exposure. Prices on their EDirect App range as follows:

1.      JA$500 for classified listings
2.      $35,000 for digital advertising

A listing may involve what's typically found on a regular events website, but in App form:

1.      Company banner
2.      Interstitial advertising
3.      Video

Truth be told, EDirect is not along in this arena as many other App existed prior to EDirect in Jamaica that cover events.

Most local developers, it seems are content making either games or Google Map applications or maps such as the JUTC Google Transit maps as explained in my blog article entitled “Why @JUTCltd @Google Transit from @UWImona Computer Science Department is the next AVL”.

With smartphone and Internet usage on the rise in Jamaica according opt the OUR (Office of Utilities Regulation) Telecommunications Market Information Report as detailed in my blog article entitled “Why OUR Telecommunications Market Information Report indicate Jamaicans love Snapchat and High-Speed Internet”, smartphones and Tablets are the perfect vehicle to advertise products.

So what is the future of an App based events website?

EDirect is Listing every Event islandwide – Great Expectations from Discounts and Coupons

Clearly they’re onto something here!

This Yelp-esque App aims to become the one-stop events App in Jamaica to quote founder Omar Green: “The App can be different things to different persons, so as a common user, you may want to find what’s happening in your area on any given day — whether it be a party, seminar or any interesting event, what restaurant is close by, who has a sale now on clothing, just about anything. It really is just a one-stop shop for everything that you need”.

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The company has a small staff of two (2) full time employees and software developer GDK Computer Systems and Services LLC, most likely to maintain the backend of their EDirect App.

They plan to expand into long term contracts, eventually becoming a dispenser of discount coupons to quote Omar Green: “We have several updates coming out soon with new features and ways to make the App more user-friendly, as well and to encourage more purchases and downloads. As it is now, most of our revenues come from the advertising of events, but those are short-term contracts that disappear after a time.

Still, advertising isn't a sure means of making money from an Apps. At 100 to 500 downloads thus far, advertising the App via traditional media can drive traffic to the App and increase membership as noted in my Geezam blog article entitled “Why App Developers, Celebrities and TV Ads increase App Downloads”.

Especially as the ad-blocking arms race has accelerated with the developement of Ad-blocking detecting software as detailed in my Geezam blog article entitled “How Ad-blocker Detecting Software protect US$22 billion Advertising Industry”. 

Hence their long-term goal of coupons, to quote Omar Green: “My vision for the company is to see an increase in long-term contracts, like what we have with South Beach and Century Wrecking, which provides discounts to consumers”.

Aside from this, they plan to expand to lifting events outside of the traditional events locations in Kingston, Ocho Rios and Montego Bay. It'll be interesting to see how they'll list events in the rural part of Jamaica.

I suspect with more advertising, which is why I’m writing about EDirect, Great Expectations are in store for the duo of Omar Green and Andrew Karim.

Here’s the Link:

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