Chomp founders Ben Keighran and Cathy Edwards foresaw the move from a PC-centric world to a world driven by mobile consumption. As the number of apps exploded, it had become difficult for users to find the perfect app based on what they want to do. Keighran and Edwards knew that the existing search technologies produced by entrenched vendors such as Google, as well as the search available in app stores, would not work well within the new mobile paradigm. App data is very different from web data. In 2009 they founded Chomp and developed a patent-pending search engine built from the ground up that allows:
- Carriers and developers to effectively integrate app search into their products and content, and
- Consumers to find apps in the fastest, easiest and most effective way possible.
In mid-2011, while mobile growth had skyrocketed, app search was still viewed as a nascent category. There was an urgent need to educate press, partners and users about the differences between app and web search, and the importance of quality app search. Competitive offerings were also coming to the fore. Chomp knew they needed to fully leverage the growing market opportunity, attract partners and clearly differentiate the company against competitors. Chomp contacted Julie Karbo and her partner at Kevin Rose’s recommendation.
- Establish Chomp as the de facto app search leader;
- Establish Ben Keighran and Cathy Edwards as technology and market leaders;
- Attract top-tier partners;
- Drive app downloads;
- Educate the market about the differences between web and app search and the growing importance of app search given mobile growth;
Karbo and Chomp quickly got to work developing positioning and messaging that would not only differentiate Chomp, but educate the market on the dire need for app search and set the metrics by which market success would be determined.
Within six months Karbo and the agency executed over 12 launches/announcements including:
- Chomp Integration into Verizon Android Devices/Innovation Center Opening
- Search Luminaries joining Chomp
- New iPhone app
- Chomp ads
- Leading App In Twitter iOS 5 Integration
- Monthly App Search Analytic Report announcements
Additionally the agency placed the founders in top speaking opportunities and they were quoted in articles about mobile, the app ecosystem and app search.
Within the first three months of working together, Karbo quickly established Chomp as the de facto leader in the app search space. The positioning of Chomp has also enabled it to thrive despite growing competition from startups, an app search entry from Yahoo! The team also successfully positioned Chomp as the leader in app search vs. Google’s dominant position in web search.
Chomp not only clearly emerged as the leader in app search, but top tech outlets such as TechCrunch have referred to Chomp as the “Google of app search.” The number of Chomp downloads and traffic increased substantially and immediately following announcements and coverage, top tier partners approached the company regarding partnerships.
Keighran and Edwards have also emerged as industry experts within the mobile and app markets and are consistently being approached to attend and speak at events. Additionally, Chomp was named a FASTech 50 company; selected by VentureWire editors.
After working with Karbo and the agency for six months, Chomp was acquired by Apple.