og:image or a social media share image is an image that is used by many social media providers to generate a preview whenever you post a link to your site. There’s a great explanation of it on freecodecamp that I recommend you to check out.
One of my earlier projects, festack, is a festival listing site which would benefit from having a nice looking og:image. I originally started working on creating a template in Figma so I can create them, but with more than 200 festivals already listed there, this is turning out to be a bit of a chore. So I thought this would be a great little product, to be able to generate these images based on a template.
Trivia — What does egami have to do with social media images? What does it even mean?
I’m Australian, so I thought it would be quite funny to request an image by saying “oi! image!”. Unfortunately,
.imagedomains don’t exist, and
image.comis not available. So I reversed it and now we have
oi.image <===> egami.io
It was an available domain name and I thought it was pretty cool.😛
There is a pretty big potential for this product as there are approximately 572 million blogs out there in the world and 7 million blog posts are published each day. Outside of blogs, there are also listing sites, such as job listing sites, real estate and many others that may benefit from this.
I also found a few competitors in this space, with some different takes on this exact issue. So why do I think I could still get customers? Well, the market size is so large and most of the available competitors combine their offering with other social media tools which means that their pricing is a bit unaffordable if you are a smaller blogger. So I intend to target the smaller size businesses and bloggers that generate a little less content.
So far, I’ve built a system where you can simply add the following and adjust the project-name, template-name and add a few parameters to adjust it.
<meta property="og:image" content="https://og.egami.io/[project-name]/[template-name].png?[query parameters]" />
Here’s an example that I am using for this blog post:
<meta property="og:image" content="https://og.egami.io/justindra/post.png?title=Startup%20%234%20-%20egami.io&description=A%20debrief%20on%20egami.io%2C%20a%20social%20media%20sharing%20image%20generator" />
And here is the result:
So how did I build the MVP? I used the following tech stack:
I’ve decided on a $10 per month pricing or $100 per year for the generation of these images. I chose this price based on the fact that this would be the price I would be willing to pay myself. As I gather more feedback from users, and once I get enough traffic, I may need to adjust this pricing to account for different features or infrastructure costs. But ideally I’d like to keep it at this price point.
I am currently marketing this via a few channels:
Unfortunately, I have received interest but not enough to get a paying user. The feedback I’ve received is that although this is a problem that people would like solved, it is not necessarily a problem they would pay for.
Other competitors have bundled this together with other offerings in automating image, pdf and report generations. As well as tackling a few more problems in the social media space instead of just the image generation. I may look into this again at some point and see what is exactly involved in building these extra features that may help users convert.
So for the time being, the current users are just myself through all my sites, but the primary user is festack as that was the main reason I wanted to build this.
As mentioned above, other competitors have extra features built on top of the image generation and I may be looking to do this. Primarily around a self-serve process so that potential users can test it out quickly and see if it is something they’d like to use.
That’s the 4th one done and I’m actually quite surprised that I made it this far! I’m really enjoying this challenge and hopefully you are too! If you’d like to chat about your own project, or ask any questions around my processes, please do reach out!