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Brief Published: 8 May 2018

Social Network for Creative Girls

Maverick's aim is to encourage girls and young women to create more

California-based start-up Maverick has launched a social network that connects young female creators with adult female mentors. The network is designed to encourage young women to create more and practise their skills by taking inspiration from role models across a variety of fields.

Maverick can be accessed online or through a free app, where users can browse through challenges set by mentors, who are known as Catalysts. These innovators, artists and entrepreneurs are chosen by the company for being inspiring role models for the Gen Z (aged nine to 23) demographic the app is targeting.

Challenges range from creating a dance routine to taking a picture that demonstrates your culture. App users respond to the challenges that interest them by sharing an image or a short video. They can then see other users' submissions and reward them by commenting on their work or giving them virtual badges – choosing between 'unique', 'creative', 'unstoppable' and 'daring' – instead of giving them a generic 'like'.

The app launched on April 27 and has already raised $2.7m in funding. Although it's mainly targeted at girls and young women, Maverick is an inclusive platform – both in terms of gender and age.

The founders are now taking the platform to the physical world through a series of MaverickLive events around the US. The first took place in Los Angeles on April 28 and featured young female influencers such as Laurie Hernandez, Chloe and Halle Bailey and Ruby Karp.

For more on how to remain relevant to Gen Z consumers, see SXSW 2018: Speaking Gen Z's Language.