Interview with Bernard Tan from ReCactus

ReCactus App

Interview with Bernard Tan from ReCactus

Nowadays, social media is part of everybody’s life. People cannot live with social media either it’s Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram. At the same time, YouTube is also a really important platform to share video and opened by most people especially millennials every day. One of the trends is reaction video, where people react to another video, while we as an audience watch their reaction. This trend is really popular, however there has not been any application to create the reaction video easily and shared it out in one platform.

That’s where ReCactus came into the market to introduce their platform by combining reaction video with social media. Read more for an in-depth interview with Bernard Tan, Founder and CEO of ReCactus.

Why the name ReCactus?

The prefix, “Re-” alludes to reaction, response and record. Cactus, because they are resilient and super cute!

Can you explain more about ReCactus and how you did come with the idea?

In 2015, I was travelling around Europe and a Finnish friend showed me these addictive Kpop reaction videos on YouTube. One reaction channel complained that making reaction videos took a long time and YouTube would take them down for copyright infringement. I decided to solve this problem, and the concept for ReCactus was born!

Can you explain how it works?

You can search videos directly in ReCactus and record your reaction/response. Post it in the app and follow other users! Your reaction and the original video are synchronised when we play it back to viewers! This way, we also avoid copyright issues! Pretty cool right?

ReCactus reaction video app

ReCactus reaction video app

Who is your target market?


How do you market ReCactus?

The great thing is that we haven’t really marketed at all, users just grow organically through word of mouth. It’s just a fun app. We’re millennials ourselves, so we just shared it with our friends at first.

What are the strengths of ReCactus compared to another social media app?

Right now, social media platforms can only like or comment on content. We think that’s old-fashioned. With ReCactus you can really interact with content in a much more engaging way never before seen in social media.

What are the difficulties you have encountered when you first started this company? What problems are you facing now? How do you overcome it?

At first no one even knew what a reaction video was, but reaction videos are now becoming so popular, people want to join us without me needing to explain the app anymore.

Where is your Headquarter?

We incorporated in Hong Kong, but we don’t really have a headquarter, everyone in the company are digital nomads!

Name the top 5 companies that you wish to partner with.

E3 for new-release game trailers. Warner/Universal/Movie production companies for new movie trailers. VEVO for new music video releases. Also YouTube.

Where do you see this company in 10 years time?

We’d like to be what Twitter is to blogs and news sites. ReCactus can be a standard way to share netizen thoughts and emotions on current affairs. You can embed a ReCactus reaction about Donald Trump or United Airlines straight onto your blog.

Any other future improvements you want to create?

Lots of new and cool features coming out soon, simple ones like face masks and filters, but more complicated ones that allow users to interact with other users, you’ll just have to stay tuned to find out!

ReCactus video reactin recorded on iPhone

ReCactus video reactin recorded on iPhone

Which kind of talent do you wish to hire?

Typically the people who want to join us are those who want to pioneer and shake up the entire industry. We know likes and comments on Facebook and Instagram are old fashioned, the type of people who join us are those who share this vision. We are the future!

Could you kindly share with me what is it like to work in your team?

We all have a lot of fun, we’re all good friends at the end of the day, we go out together, watch Coldplay concerts together, etc. I think most of us are workaholics to be honest, but you can’t blame me for that! I think we all just love the app too much.

Are you thinking of joining other startups business? As a co-founder/investor? What kind of market will it be?

ReCactus is the only thing we’re focusing on right now.

A personal question about yourself. In your deathbed what do you wish that you’ve achieved? Spiritually? Career wise? Impact to the society? And what do wish that your friends and family will say about you?

I base everything I do on the idea of connecting with people, be it big or small. I found this to be my calling during my solo travels for the last few years. All I want to do is make wonderful things and put it out there in the world for others. The other day, a user posted a video on YouTube professing her love for ReCactus. She called it “the best app in the world!” To think we only launched 2 weeks ago and people already love the app so much, makes all the buckets of tears worth it. Nothing beats that feeling!

What questions do you wish that I have asked more today?

I think these are great questions and you did a great job, well done and thank you for listening to my madness!

Special thanks for Bernard Tan from ReCactus.

James Gary About the author