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08/02/2009 by

Cute BuddyPoke Wins Hearts of The Social Web

BuddyPoke is conquering the hearts of millions around the world. The application, available on the social networks Orkut, MySpace, Netlog, Hyves, Hi5, Friendster, Que Pasa and Lokalisten, let’s you create a 3D avatar with the same physical characteristics as you.


Hug, kiss, tickle, or punch your friends with your own personalized 3D avatar

With BuddyPoke You can customize your appearance e.g. your hair, eyes, bodycolor, freckles, mouth, moustache or beard. Furthermore, you can change your mood (happy, in love, hopeful) of your “Poke” and interact with other “Pokes’ (give kisses, flirting, send flowers).

Randall Ho and Dave Westwood, who co-created BuddyPoke, leveraged their 3D skills to tap into the Poke popularity to take the human interaction on social networks to an entirely new level of interactivity and engagement. In early April 2008 Randall and Dave first released Buddypoke on MySpace. Other social networks followed later that year.

The key to BuddyPoke’s success rests on its built-in virality coupled with sophisticated interactivity. If you are hugging a friend, you actually see two friends that are hugging, that’s much more engaging. To monetize Buddypoke Google Adsense ads ($1-2 CPM) are shown on Orkut.

Some figures of Buddypoke’s success: over 1 million installs on Netlog and 17.8 million visitors (February 5, 2009), 1.1 million active users on MySpace (February 8, 2009), 1.3 million users (16% of total users) on Hyves (February 8, 2009) and listed most popular in the Orkut Application Directory.


BudyPoke installs between May and August 2008


Netlog installs by language on December, 2008

The application is thus far most popular in Brazil, The Netherlands and Italy. When it will be released on Facebook is not yet known. But if the application becomes as popular as on other social networks, they’d better have a scalability and monetization plan prepared for a sudden user influx.

Many thanks to Steven Kraal of Netlog for providing the BuddyPoke data.

Source: Wikipedia, Ning, Google Code, SlideShare, YouTube


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