Contxto – As our attention spans gradually decrease, short-format content is thriving. More social media and tech companies have rightfully started to experiment with this new trend. In fact, ever since Snapchat launched and Vine went viral (may it rest in peace), other companies have joined along.
Recently, Chinese TikTok has captured the attention of younger generations with its comical, creative social network comprised of short video clips. In response to the fast-growing platform, social media giant Facebook couldn’t just step aside and not join the competition.
In response to TikTok’s growing presence, the company announced the release of its short video platform, Lasso. Interestingly enough, Facebook has chosen to test out this model in Mexico before introducing it elsewhere.
Ultimately seeking to challenge TikTok in populated markets where the platform hasn’t had much penetration, Latin America seems to be the most favorable market.
Short video network
Lasso allows people to create as well as share videos with time caps of 26 seconds. Filters, funny effects, not to mention hashtag challenges and song features, still conserve Facebook’s essence.
Even better, these goofy videos (common ones being people lipsyncing) are easily sharable over Facebook and Instagram stories.
Based on the recent press release, the app launched a couple of months ago. Right now, Lasso is also starting to work hand-in-hand with local content creators. Apparently, it aims to discern the best way to reach the local community, gather feedback and build a better user experience.
Zuckerberg also describes how Facebook is working to launch a payments product in Mexico and elsewhere by year’s end as the Libra deals with regulatory scrutiny.
Interestingly enough, Mexico was Lasso’s go-to-market next to the United States. Seeking to front-run TikTok in populated markets where the platform hasn’t gained traction, Latin America is definitely a promising market for app success.
From a recent press release, “Mexicans have built a strong and committed community around Facebook videos and we will continue listening to them to continue developing the experience within Lasso,” said Valerie Miranda, Leader of Entertainment Partnerships for Facebook in Latin America.
“We are excited to offer people new avenues to express their creativity and be part of a fun and inspirational community around the video.”
TechCrunch recently reported a leaked internal conversation of Mark Zuckerberg with his team. During this recording, he reportedly said in regards to TikTok:
“So we have a number of approaches that we’re going to take towards this, and we have a product called Lasso that’s a standalone app that we’re working on, trying to get product-market fit in countries like Mexico… We’re trying to first see if we can get it to work in countries where TikTok is not already big before we go and compete with TikTok in countries where they are big.”
According to TechCrunch, the company is also exploring a new fintech product for the Mexican market, after Libra is still dealing with legal matters.
We reached out to Facebook Mexico but the company declined to comment. However, it did say that this information came from a leaked conversation in July and comments were taken out of context.
How does Lasso work?
Both Android and iOS users in Mexico and the United States can already download Lasso. They can even sign in through their Facebook or Instagram accounts.
- It is a solo-app, meaning it is independent. Topics and content range from comedy and beauty to music, fashion and pop culture.
- A millionaire song repertoire is at the user’s disposal to add.
- Videos are extremely easy to share over different platforms.
- Production is very flexible. You can even play around with speeds including from .1x to 3x. Users can also film in different segments, add gifs and even camera effects such as VR and facial filters.
- The community is very used to hashtags and challenges. Take advantage of trending hashtags to get your videos in front of more people.