What We Can Learn from the Shutting Down of HQ Trivia

Did you hear the news? Probably not. HQ Trivia finally shut down. The once-beloved Mobile Application that allowed you to play a game of trivia with people across the globe is now no more. After struggling to raise money and create revenue, it finally shut down on February 15th, 2020.

Having seen it’s players and users drop over the last year since it’s opening on August 16th, 2017, the application has been burning money since it’s launch and finally shut down.

At the height of its power, HQ Trivia claimed to have 2.2 million users and turned Trivia Host Scott Rogowski into a household name. Its fame grew quickly in 2017 and it quickly became the game that all of your friends played in the corner of the room. As it grew, it became a part of our multi-media culture as celebrities such as the Rock, Robert De Niro, and even John Mayer would go on to join Scott and his other cohosts at some point for a game of Trivia.

But just like technology start-up Uber, as HQ Trivia rose in popularity, things were not going well behind the scenes with stories of shenanigans, financial troubles, and even the Overdose of cofounder, Colin Knoll. Scott Rogowski who left early in 2019 would later recall management as incompetence, arrogant, and short-sighted.

What We Can Learn From HQ Trivia

Looking back at all of it, however, there are many things that we can learn as marketers and entrepreneurs from the rise and fall of HQ Trivia.

1) Remember that users are great, but money is greater. HQ Trivia rose on the scene as a hot company and trivia app that was giving money away to many across the globe but it quickly ran out of money. It always claimed to have a monetization strategy but duel-marketing with brands and TV shows couldn’t help it out.

2) Always ask yourself where is the retention plan is. After some people, and even some winners, got over the flair of HQ Trivia as an App many people stopped logging into it. It failed to keep a core audience as many people would leave it after logging into it one or two times.

3) A Failed Product is a failed product. HQ Trivia grew too fast, in the eyes of sum. One of the core failures of HQ Trivia was the technology itself. Though the Owners would constantly be on record as saying that they were “buying more servers”, users constantly complained about the product crashing and not working properly.

Ultimately HQ Trivia will be remembered as another in a long line of application failures, but it will be interesting to see where it goes from here. Just because it’s gone now, doesn’t mean it will be gone forever. As the ever-growing sphere of video and social media world continues to evolve, it’s important that we learn lessons from it unless we want to end up like it.