There are two fundamental equalizers in life – the Internet and education.
– John Chambers
The present world of digitization has made people internet dependent in almost every aspect of life. Be it studies or be it fashion, be it entertainment or be it news, internet has become the “all-knowing-answer-machine” for the users. But however, sometimes people get a tad regarding how to make the utmost use of this virtual space. To solve small problems like this, Gibbon has brought to thousands of its users the easiest way possible to learn through the web. It is a unique and an extremely innovative platform for informal learning. And the best part about this platform its user-friendliness. To enlighten the world more about it, Gibbon has shared a few words about its journey and future plans with Startoholics!
To anyone who’s never come across Gibbon, how would you describe it?
There is a lot of information available on the internet. Sometimes you just need someone to guide you to it. That’s where Gibbon comes in. Gibbon is a peer to peer learning platform where everybody can become a student and a teacher.
As a teacher on the platform you can easily create learning flows by collecting articles, video, blog posts and books from the internet on the subject you want to teach. Students can follow these learning flows and learn chapter by chapter.
To help you with learning we create a daily or weekly playlist with articles from the different Learning Flows you follow. Just tell us how many minutes you want to learn every week and we’ll automatically generate a personal playlist for you.
What’s your funding, marketing and team building strategy?
After learning a lot from our beta users we officially launched Gibbon in December 2013. The platform has been growing steady ever since, with new users and a growing amount of content to learn from. With the launch, we attracted our first employee; he will take care of all the communication and growth at Gibbon.
Who do you see as your target audience?
The early users of Gibbon are very much tech related. Most of our content is provided by the people from the tech scene. Our popular topics are design, programming, entrepreneurship related. We want to grow the platform in the tech scene and after that slowly grow to a broader audience and launch new topics.
What makes you different from other such startups?
Because Gibbon is so easy to use, the knowledge provided by the teachers on the platform is easy to reach and to spread. Learning from each other was never this easy.
Who would you say is your biggest competitor?
Who inspires you?
Self taught people. Everybody puts in the time and energy to learn something new in order to grow and become better.
What is the biggest hurdle you have faced?
The idea for Gibbon was simple, but defining the actual product and its key features was the most difficult part. We have talked to tons of early users and people around us about Gibbon to find our MVP. During our time in beta we tried out multiple versions. We’ll slowly continue to add features, but the biggest hurdle definitely was keeping the product clear to understand and easy to use.
What is that one mistake you’ve made, and what did you learn from it?
We started out with building an iPad app. We see this as the main platform where the content of Gibbon is consumed. The mistake we made was that we had no content then. On the iPad it is not easy to create a learning flow and add content. When we switched to the web app we noticed that our beta users started to create more and more content on Gibbon. After that we put the IOS app on hold and finished the web version first.
Where do you see Gibbon after 5 years?
Education is in flux, things are changing rapidly in the classroom. In 5 years, traditional education will become less and less relevant. Technology is further pushing this transition. The new generation will look to the internet for guidance. Gibbon wants to become the biggest informal learning platform in the world, an assistant to guide you to everything you want to learn.
What one piece of advice would you give to soon-to-be startup founders?
Always keep a notebook with you and write down every idea that comes to your mind and every suggestion you receive. Ideas that may sound silly at first can turn out to be very valuable later on.
Learning could have never been so easy the way it is with Gibbon. No matter whatever you want to learn, Gibbon has the “playlist” for you. All you have to do is just to shuffle it. This is certainly a unique innovation to make people interested in learning. With crystal clear aims and strong objectives, Gibbon has lots in its cache to give out to the world! Best wishes with Gibbon.