As consumers are becoming mistrusting of paid influencer recommendations, one company is aiming to fill the white space for authentic, word-of-mouth reviews. Enter Supergreat, a mobile app designed to foster a community of genuine interaction and discussions around beauty via videos. The app was launched in 2018 by Tyler Faux and Dan Blackman, and recently raised $2.5 million in seed funding led by Thrive Capital and Third Kind.

To date, the platform has amassed more than 30,000 beauty enthusiasts who are able to create videos on the product of their choice in exchange for collecting what the brand calls “supercoins”, a digital currency that can be used to purchase products from participating brands.

“Text reviews just don’t cut it in a highly personal and visual space like beauty, where there is a seemingly endless array of new products and brands to try,” explained Tyler. “Other review formats impart less information, are often easier to fake, and are definitely way less engaging than watching a short video from someone you trust and relate to.”

Reviewers can scan the product they want to talk about or search the database of over 100,000 sku’s, which includes brands such as L’Oréal, Fenty Beauty and Glossier. Once a product is selected, videos are recorded directly from a user’s phone and edited within the app to be shared with the Supergreat community and on other popular networks, including Instagram Stories, Snapchat and iMessage. The quick videos (they are 60 seconds maximum in length) mimic Youtube’s early days, when content was recorded casually without regard for professional lighting or shooting equipment.

Beauty enthusiasts can join simply to watch the videos, without having to upload to the community. Users also have the option to subscribe to reviewers, but the subscription count is kept private to avoid the popularity contest that exists on similar platforms.

“My co-founder Dan and I previously worked at Tumblr and one of our takeaways from that experience was that having fewer vanity metrics, in this case, public subscriber counts, focuses the community more on the quality of each piece of content,” said Tyler.

In the same way Supergreat is banking on organic reviews to help consumers make purchasing decisions, it’s also utilizing the same word-of-mouth concept to drive growth on its platform.

“Most of our new users find us organically through a Supergreat reviewer or review. Beauty is such a naturally-engaging space as consumers are constantly looking for the best or newest product to try, making it natural for people to be inclined to join our community,” he said.

For now, the app currently links out to third-party websites, such as Amazon, for users who wish to purchase products from uploaded videos; but as the company grows, so will its revenue options. “We will continue to improve our reviewers’ experience on Supergreat while also creating new experiences around commerce and personalization for reviewers and non-reviewers alike,” said Tyler.