Messaging Giant Kik Brings Kin Crypto Tokens to Avatar-Based Social Network IMVU

Messaging giant Kik has announced a new partnership with  IMVU, the world’s largest avatar-based social network.

Kik is a messenger service which has over 15 million monthly users including 1 in 5 US teenagers, and the project’s Kin cryptocurrency is designed to enable users to earn Kin through platform engagement and then spend it on related services. The partnership will connect IMVU to other services using Kin, and allow IMVU users to earn on their platform where an average user spends almost an hour a day customizing avatars and interacting with other users.

The network will enable users to earn Kin tokens on platforms like Kik and IMVU which can then be spent on services offered by other partners like Blackhawk Network, a major e-giftcard vendor giving users access to services like Netflix and Xbox Live, and Unity, the cross-platform game engine behind Kerbal Space Program and other popular games.

Kik first discovered the potential to enable their users to purchase goods and services through currency earned by engaging with the platform with the launch of Kik points. The points system allowed users to choose to watch ads in exchange for points which could be exchanged for digital goods like Stickers on the platform.

Like the IMVU Credits system, a points system allowing users to earn money by creating and selling digital goods on IMVU, Kik points operated in a closed ecosystem that didn’t interact with other platforms or services. The success of the project demonstrated the potential of using a credits system within the platform – Kik Director of Partner Success Sergio Silva discussed the transition from Kik points to Kin with CCN:

“The vision was how do we create a world that’s fairer, and how do we create a way where everyone is fairly compensated for their contributions in a decentralized way, in a decentralized ecosystem.”

The idea is to enable users to spend and earn across different platforms, which led to the launch of Kin tokens, which raised $100 million last year. While IMVU allows users to exchange IMVU Credits for fiat currency within the IMVU marketplace, the new partnership aims to open that closed ecosystem to a wider marketplace by connecting IMVU users to other apps and services connected to Kin. “One of the things that we look at from the partnership is how does IMVU complement Kin’s ecosystem in a meaningful way, and how does that partnership accelerate the usage of Kin and the transaction volume of Kin. First, IMVU has a very strong content creator userbase. We’ve got 50,000 people on IMVU earning a living creating digital products,” the Kik executive said, adding:

“This gives us the opportunity to unlock that earning potential and create a network effect across digital services.”

Half of IMVU users transact on the IMVU platform every month, and over half of them already use Kik, a connection that the teams feel will create a seamless transition into Kin adoption. While an estimated 90% of cryptocurrency users are male, over 70% of IMVU users are female which may also enable Kin to reach an untapped demographic of female content creators and community members.

How it works

IMVU users will activate wallets, allowing them to earn Kin tokens by participating in polls and other services and then spend the Kin on virtual goods in IMVU or e-gift card offers and other services.
“We really look to our Creators’ success as a mark of the platform’s success,” says Victor Zaud, senior vice president of marketing at IMVU. “Our Creators are incredibly creative, so we try hard to focus on empowering them further through content programs that reward their content creation.”

The Kik team believe that bringing a meaningful use case for cryptocurrency allowing users to earn and spend crypto on the products they enjoy will help accelerate the mass adoption of cryptocurrency as a whole.

Featured image from Shutterstock.