A startup called Shine is rolling out a new service offering on-demand life coaching via text messages as a paid tier to its free, daily texting service. While a number of today’s chatbots and SMS-based concierge services have been focused on helping people shop via text message , Shine to date has instead focused on helping you become a better person. Through automated texts, Shine delivers daily self-help, encouragement, and advice to its subscribers, via either SMS or Facebook Messenger.
With the debut of Shinevisor , it’s preparing to introduce a more personal touch: advice and guidance from real people, who are certified life, career, and school coaches.
Launched into beta roughly a year ago,Shine’s free service is largely targeted toward a millennial audience. Every day, it sends out an automated text that tackles life’s struggles. For example, recent texts I’ve received from Shine have delved into subjects like facing criticism, trying to let go of the need to exert control over everything, overcoming procrastination, practicing patience, learning self-compassion, and so on.
Many of the texts are particularly tuned into issues you would face at work, and in particular those that women deal with in their careers. As co-founder Naomi Hirabayashi explained at last year’s launch, half of women report having experiences with self-doubt about their performance and careers, compared with 31% of men. Shine wants to address that.
Each Shine text starts of with an introduction to the day’s subject, which you can respond to by texting back “M” (for more). Shine then sends additional insight, including the why’s and how’s of the issue and hand, as well as further reading via web links.
As of this summer, the service had sent out over 2.8 million messages to a user base that’s almost entirely (88%) under the age of 35.