Indiana’s Snappening Brings Event Planning to Your Phone


event planning apps


Three-year-old Indianapolis company Snappening has launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise $20,000. The company will use money from the flexible funding campaign to develop an app to go along with their current website.

In 2011, Crystal Grave agreed to help a friend plan her wedding. With plenty of experience in corporate event planning, she expected it to be no problem.

incontent3For Crystal, the process wasn’t too troubling, but she soon realized that an average consumer would find it impossibly hard to navigate. Without something as simple as a comprehensive database of venues, someone with no knowledge of the industry could waste days in research and still not find what they needed.

In answer to the problem, Crystal created Focused mainly in Indiana (for now!) the site helps you find a venue and/or an event planner for any type of event.

As the company grows, a mobile app seems the next logical step. So, in coordination with Indiegogo’s International Women’s Day initiative, Crystal launched a crowdfunding campaign.

The mobile app will bring the same search engine users experience on the website. It will also help you locate venues nearby using the GPS on your phone and allow users to connect with several potential venues at once.

Through the mobile app, Snappening also wants to expand nationally and across vendor categories.

Event planning is a $6 billion/year industry, and that doesn’t really even cover the average party planner who is looking to plan a party or wedding. While there are tons of apps to help plan and prepare, nothing quite covers the niche Crystal and Snappening are shooting for. They’ve spent 3 years slowly building their presence in Indiana and gaining revenue through premium memberships and advertisements.

Now with a proven business model and lots of experience, they’ve put themselves in a good position to grow bigger and bigger. Check out their Indiegogo campaign and see what you think.

Conversion In A Box Makes a New Way to Trade Content for Contact



Trading content for contact information is a common practice around the Internet. Most of us think nothing of plopping our email into a box for a free ebook or song download.

Indianapolis-based Conversion In A Box wants to make that process even easier. An account dashboard makes it easy to set up several accounts at once and track NibzNotes5metrics on how each account is doing.

It will be interesting to see how Conversion In A Box grows. After all, this process is already handled pretty efficiently by email services like Mailchimp and Aweber.

Check out our Q&A with Conversion In A Box below:

What is your startup called?

Conversion In A Box (

What’s the story behind your idea?

I have a 12 year background in Music business. From 1999ish – 2012 I ran a concert promotion company and produced over 450 events, I also had a management company and managed several musicians that I developed and grew into bands that toured around the world.  Fast-forward to now, I got out of music as a full-time profession and went back to my roots in technology. I do, however, help bands in my free time and I run a music blog where I write about music marketing, business, etc. In late 2012 I helped a friend launch a new band and we thought it woudl be awesome to gather email addresses in exchange for new songs from their album and from that Conversion In A Box was born.

Its an easy to use software that makes it a piece of cake to give away a song in exchange for an email address (and other info, if you want it).

Who are the founders, and what are their backgrounds?

Mark LaFay is COO of Sonar studios and co-founder of Conversion In A Box. Mark has a BS in Computer Technology from Purdue University and has 12-years of experience in music business and marketing. LaFay built an artist mgmt. firm that represented multiple artists. He negotiated multiple recording and publishing deals, released 25 albums that collectively sold over 500k copies globally and launched tours in 26 countries (6 continents); LaFay also founded and managed a concert promotion company that produced over 450 live events independently in Indianapolis. After his departure from music, LaFay went on to assist in the growth of the events and entertainment division of Bohlsen Group, an Indianapolis-Based PR firm, before assuming his current role at Sonar Studios.

Vince Freeman is founder, president, vision-caster, and the “keeper-of-the-faith” for Sonar Studios, and co-founder of Conversion In A Box. Since studying Industrial Design and Visual Communications, Freeman has spent over twenty years in this industry instructing, speaking, writing and consulting in the area of using technology in communications and the visual arts. In 1999, Freeman founded Sonar Studios, a rich media and application developer located in downtown Indianapolis. Under his direction, Sonar Studios has won numerous awards in addition to being a Mira Finalist in 2010 for “innovation of the year” and 2013 for “excellence and innovation in education.”

Where are you based?

1060 N Capitol Ave

Suite C100

Indianapolis, IN

What’s the startup scene like where you are based?

There is a thriving startup community in Indianapolis. There are several meetups and networking events that encourage entrepreneurs to get after their ideas and even pair them up with technicians and investors. There are also several investor groups in several different industry verticals here. You could have an m-tech product like we do, or bio-tech, pharm, energy, retail, etc. and you would have funding options in the City and the state. The state government is also working on initiatives to encourage startups. There is an investor tax credit to encourage investment in Indiana companies and there is even a state-sponsored investment fund designed to fund new Indiana businesses.

What problem do you solve?

Our tool is a simplified approach to digital marketing. We make it easier, cheaper and faster to launch marketing campaigns with validating results.

Why now?

We no longer live in an age where success requires vanilla products marketed to vast numbers of people through huge television and radio spends. Thanks to the internet we can now create products designed for specific groups of people and we can reach those groups through laser-focused marketing campaigns that require less money.

What are some of the milestones your startup has already reached?

We are fully functioning and available for use. We have cracked 250 users and our average CPA is around $5.00. We have also integrated with mutliple ESP and CRM platforms which makes it easy to put your data into use either in bulk or in real-time.

What are your next milestones?

1000 users, 25% account utilization or higher.

Where can people find out more? Any social media links you want to share?

We have some videos at that do a great job of explaining the product and why you should use it :-).


Indy Startup SteadyServ, A Beer Startup That Monitors The Keg

kegsWe’ve all been there, either a party where the keg is tapped dry way before it’s time, or trapsing through the bar district to find that bars are out of your favorite brew on tap. That’s how the story of SteadyServ actually started.

SteadyServ is an Indianapolis based startup founded by Steve Hershberger after a buddy came into town to visit him, only to find out their favorite kegs at their favorite spots were tapped dry. That got Hershberger’s entrepreneurial wheels turning. What he found out from bar owners and bartenders was that it’s very hard to monitor how much is left in a keg.

SteadyServ,iKeg,Indianapolis startup,Indy startup,startup“He flies into town, and we go to Mass Ave,” Hershberger told the Indianapolis Business Journal. “We went to four bars, and they were all out. So we finally went back to the hotel and ordered one of the beers the bar had. It was just a beer he wasn’t really looking forward to having. His parting shot was, ‘Gee, Steve, you really let me down on this.’”

Sure if you’ve got one guy sitting by your keg all night and keeping track of the filled Red Solo Cups you may get a rough estimate but other than that it’s a shot in the dark. So what’s an entrepreneur to do? Put sensors and an app in the keg of course.

The heart of SteadyServ is a sensor laden device that monitors how much is left of the keg. When the keg is getting low it can alert customers, bartenders and bar management that the keg is running low. Sure we can all tell when last call is upon us, but imagine hanging out with buddies, drinking your favorite brew on tap and then getting a notification that the well is drying up. This will insure that you can get that one last glass before you have to switch brews.

So is this for real? Absolutely. Not only that but Hershberger reports that he’s already secured $1.5 million from investors to develop what’s being called the iKeg prototype.

In addition to the convenience the iKeg will provide to bars and their patrons, Hershberger has developed a data protocol within the iKeg that will provide valuable information on real time beer inventory control for bar owners on how customers are consuming beer.  With the current keg inventory process so flawed, bar owners will quickly learn how fast their kegs are running out and they’ll be able to stop selling the beer that doesn’t sell and order more of the beer that does.

The data will also be valuable to distributors that SteadyServ will sell it too. As new bars and restaurants open up they ask the distributors what’s hot and what’s not. Now rather than base this information on what bars are really ordering they can base it on what customers are really drinking.

Hershberger already has some heavy hitters on his board of advisers including David Coors of Coors Brewing Company, the namesake family. Jeff Ready; CEO of Indianapolis-based Scale Computing Inc.; and Pat Canavan, former senior vice president of global governance for Motorola are also board members.

Most of their $1.5 million dollars came from angel investors however Indiana’s Elevate Ventures has committed $125, 000 to SteadyServ.

“The iKeg solution is breaking into a $21 billion draft beer industry where there’s incredible potential,” Elevate CEO Steve Hourigan said in a prepared statement. “It’s exciting and gratifying to see a company like SteadyServ make its home in Indiana, and we’re proud to say that we support their team and the business they’re building.”

You can find out more about SteadyServ at

SplitBin says they’re the Wolverine of Wine Startups. 


Cancer: Bad Ass Startup Chick Denver Hutt Reminds Us We’re Entrepreneurs, Not Super Heroes

Denver Hutt, Speak Easy Indy, Indianapolis startup,startup,startup news, Cancer

Denver Hutt (center) surrounded by entrepreneurs. (photo: Facebook)


Back in March, Executive Director of the Speak Easy co-working and startup event space in Indianapolis, Denver Hutt, was our Bad Ass Startup Chick here at Nibletz. We chose Hutt because she’s an Indy lover by choice, deciding to stick around Indianapolis after college. She’s a native of Santa Monica, and who gives up the gorgeous weather, sandy beaches and west coast lifestyle for the middle of the country?

A woman who is uber passionate about startups, entrepreneurs and community, that’s who.

Well like many of us Hutt lives the entrepreneur lifestyle. We originally met her last year on the sneaker strapped road trip when we stopped at a Verge Indy event held at the SpeakEasy. She then came and visited us in Memphis in February for The Startup Conference, and a month later we spent most of the week with her at SXSW.

Hutt’s been shoulder deep in running Indy’s awesome coworking space, finding mentors to help the Indy startup scene and working on the next big thing for Indianapolis startups. With a plate that full she lives the round the clock pace that we’re all accustomed to. She’s the kind of person you can ping at 3am on a random Tuesday to fact check a story or 8am on a Saturday morning to confirm details of events. She, like many entrepreneurs, goes round the clock.

That’s why when she came down with a cough over a month and a half ago, she just kept going.  The cough became pneumonia. The pneumonia became double pneumonia and she ended up with two fractured ribs from coughing so much.

“I have had a cough for quite some time. More than simply being annoying, after weeks of coughing I developed pneumonia, and because I don’t like to give things just 50%, my pneumonia turned into double pneumonia. And two fractured ribs. (How’s that for commitment?!) As my cough continued despite multiple antibiotics, my doctor and I decided to begin more serious testing to determine the underlying cause.” Hutt said in an email to her community members at the Speak Easy which she shared with Nibletz today.

It was determined that the 26 year old bad ass startup chick was staring down the barrel of cancer.

On May 17th Denver began treatment at the IU Simon Cancer Center. She says she’s in good hands at her alma mater. She seemed in very good spirits when we talked with her today, and she is determined to continue to grow the Speak Easy while undergoing treatment.

There’s no exact prognosis just yet. Treatment has just started and her doctors are still determining exactly what kind of cancer it is. Denver is obviously a fighter and she will attack this cancer with the same vigor she’s been leading the Indianapolis startup community with.

When we spoke with her this morning we didn’t want to tell the, “oh my god Denver Hutt has cancer story,” instead her and I decided the story that should be told is that no matter how fast you’re moving, what you’re working on or how close you are to closing that round, you need to take care of your health and your body. That $1 million dollar series A round isn’t going to do you a bit of good if you’re not around to enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Denver had previously committed to being on the “Bad Ass Startup Chicks” panel at the next The Startup Conference. She assured me today that she will still make that appearance next February.

STOP When’s the last time you took care of you?

Find the SpeakEasy here
Denver’s message to friends and family here
Information on health insurance for entrepreneurs available through Startup America here

Indy Couple Getting Their Grit & Grind On At Memphis’ Seed Hatchery Accelerator

Boosterville,Tom Cooper,Pam Cooper,Seed Hatchery,Memphis Startup,Indianapolis startup Memphis’ Seed Hatchery accelerator is less than a month away from demo day for their third cohort of startups. This years class has some major standouts and Boosterville is one of them.

Boosterville was founded as Sodbuster by married couple Pam and Tom Cooper. The Cooper’s hale from Indianapolis Indiana and they are the only “out of town” team for this years Seed Hatchery class. I met Pam Cooper on Brad Feld’s alternative to Hacker News, the Startup Revolution Hub. Meeting woman entrepreneurs is nothing new these days however Pam and Tom admittedly have adult children, sometimes older than the other founders on the Startup Revolution Hub, and the other founders at Seed Hatchery.

I quickly struck up an online friendship with Pam that resulted in her presenting at the startup conference and facilitated an introduction into the Seed Hatchery program.

What makes the Coopers even more interesting is that Tom is the founding CTO of Cha-Cha and has been a distinguished CTO for the last 30 years. While I wouldn’t call them “startup rich” the Cooper’s have done well. Pam founded a successful cleaning business. Tom has hit a few doubles and triples in his career. Tom enjoys flying his prop plane when he can pull away from the computer screen.

That’s what makes Cooper’s truly unique. They aren’t in the Seed Hatchery program for the seed investment (which of course helps any startup, Boosterville included), they are in it for the grit and grind and the whirlwind business training that happens during a three month, intensive accelerator program.

While Pam sometimes jokes about being the “class mom” with this year’s Seed Hatchery, they work with the best of them, until late hours of the night and back again first thing in the morning. Tom made arrangements with his development job in Indianapolis to work from Memphis every morning before working on Boosterville.

So what is Boosterville?

It’s a new platform that combines the mobile wallet with a loyalty and rewards type program that benefits local schools. Pam and Tom grew tired of neighborhood kids hitting them up with the same popcorn tins, wrapping paper and World’s Finest Chocolate bars. The school fundraiser was destined for a disruption.

Boosterville has partnered with Peabody Elementary in mid-town Memphis and merchants in the Overton Square and Cooper Young neighborhoods for their beta testing.

The Boosterville mobile app is tied in with local merchants and local schools who have agreed to give a kickback to the school of the user’s choice when they checkout with the Boosterville mobile wallet. The Cooper’s live on the cusp of new technology, and to that end, where others have used Paypal or Google Wallet for checkout, Boosterville uses fellow midwestern startup Dwolla as it’s wallet back bone.

Dwolla’s founder Ben Milne knows Tom well and is very enthusiastic about what Boosterville is doing.

Despite their age, and experience, Boosterville is treated the same way every other startup in the Seed Hatchery class is treated. They’ve been going up and down in the weekly rankings like every other startup and they went through a name change and a couple pivots during the past two months.

Boosterville will graduate from the Seed Hatchery program on demo day which is May 16th and will coincide with the Memphis in May festivities. For more info on Boosterville visit

Find more startup news from the south east here.

Indianapolis Startup MileTrack GPS Makes Tracking Miles & Reimbursement A Breeze

MileTrackGPS,Indianapolis startup,startupsIndianapolis based serial entrepreneur Andrew Westberg has shifted focus back to his hardware startup called MileTrack GPS. This GPS device combines wireless communications with GPS coordinates for the express reason of tracking your mileage.

The device, that plugs into your cars cigarette outlet adapter, is perfect for recording mileage and then getting reimbursed for it. It’s also perfect for companies that need to track the whereabouts of their field employees without systems that cost tens of thousands of dollars.

Now of course with smartphones and the latest stand alone GPS devices there are several ways of tracking mileage, but none are as easy or plug and play as MileTrack GPS. The compact device plugs into the car and then shakes hands with a wireless network. It’s doing this for almanac data, to get a better fixed GPS signal and then to dump data back to the cloud-based MileTrack GPS website.

Westberg’s demo video below, shows exactly how the device operates. You may notice in watching the video though, that it can be as easy as just putting in the car and letting it run. The device and website are doing all the work for you.

At the end of the month (or day, however you calculate your mileage) you can see all of the trips you’ve taken. You can label the trips you take most frequently and then you can notate next to the trip whether it was business or personal.  The settings tab allows the user to input the reimbursement rates for business mileage and it has the ability to input different mileage for different businesses.

This is ideal for freelancers who bill clients by the mile at different rates.  You can easily notate personal trips as well and take them out of the reimbursement calculations.

After all of the data parameters are set, the system just about runs itself. After the user has reconciled their mileage it gives an overall calculation for reimbursement that can then be printed off, along with a record of the miles actually driven.  You can even go back in the MileTrack system and see where you went, what streets you were on and what places you stopped.

You can find out more about MileTrackGPS here

Or support them on Kickstarter here.


Indy Startup Weekend Team Max Recovery Already Up And Running

This weekend Startup Weekend is on fire. There are hundreds of startups being formed around the country and around the world. Indianapolis is one of the Startup Weekends happening this weekend.

Indianapolis startup evangelist, Nick Tippmann has jumped in to help form Max Recovery. With accelerator experience behind him, and even being a Startup Weekend Organizer in Bloomington Indiana, Tippmann has Max Recovery on a roadmap for success this weekend.

Max Recovery helps hardcore athletes track, balance and boost their body’s performance. It was built to help these body builders, UFC fighters, cross fit trainers, marathoners and those aspiring to be get the most out of their hard work. These people work themselves half to death and end up walking around like zombies. These are hardcore people we are targeting. They are the ones up at 4:30am to workout and not getting home until 9pm. Max Recovery allows these people to keep balanced. We have found that you need to work at Recovery as well to get the most out of these hard efforts or some of their effort ends up getting wasted because they have not properly recovered. They are not a sharp as they could be.

Tippmann told Nibletz exclusively.

Max Recovery is an app that allows these people to keep track of how balanced they are by logging their work and recovery in the terms of debits and credits. The idea is that everything cost. The more work you want to do, the more you have to pay for it. The goal is to keep a “balanced book.” For example a hard work out may cost -8, lack of sleep -4 and long run -6, you would then need to work at recovery to get credits from things like a massage +6, hot tub +2, 8 hours sleep +4, and acupuncture +8.

Max Recovery is in it for the long haul working on a legitimate, scalable, startup.

We are doing this at Indy Startup Weekend part of the global startup battle. We have one of the best teams I’ve ever seen assembled at one of these events. We have a specialist at every function and over 30 years experience combined in software. We have 2 devs, a graphic designer, UX designer, and a couple business/marketing guys. Tippmann said

Max Recovery isn’t like other health and wellness apps that allows you to track your workouts and count calories. It allows you to track how balanced you are. They haven’t found any competitors doing the same thing but they have found the area of recovery and habit building a hot topic. Tim Ferris mentions recovery as a key part of his four hour body workout

This weekend Max Recovery has already built their site and an app. Tippmann tells us they aren’t about mock ups, wire frames and demos, Max Recovery has done what teams ultimately should try to achieve during any Startup Weekend.


Checkout Max Recovery Here

More Startup Weekend Coverage From Nibletz

Do you have your ticket for this yet?

Indianapolis Startup: Trensy Makes Doing Good Deeds Fun INTERVIEW

A hot new startup in the vibrant startup community of Indianapolis Indiana is gamifying good deeds. The startup, called Trensy, makes it easy to earn points for just about any kind of good deed.

Good deeds ranging from volunteering, to much easier tasks like taking the bus or using a reusable grocery bag at the grocery store can help you earn points on Trensy’s good deed platform.

The platform ties into your Facebook account for 0-auth verification and then a way to share your good deeds socially and invite others to participate as well. One of the cool parts about Trensy is when you sign up and look at the available good deeds, you’ll probably find that you’re doing some to these things already. (if not most of them).

The two founders that met at IU (Alma Mater of Mark Cuban and Nick Tippmann) didn’t set out to do a startup together. They first became roommates and friends, and then went off into the real world. When they realized they wanted to start something, and something good for the community, they naturally turned to each other as co-founders.

Trensy co-founder Kyle Robbins told us:

“After graduating, we both moved to Indianapolis to begin careers and worked independently for several year before connecting on trensy. Bryan worked on the service side of an educational software company and I worked as a developer.  The decision to venture together on this journey all came down to the trust and confidence they had in each other. Fate got us together to work on changing the world”

Trensy is available for both iOS and Android. The good deed app platform can be a lot of fun especially when you challenge yourself or friends to get more points.

Here’s our full interview with Kyle Robbins below.

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Indianapolis Startup: Blab Bubble Is A DIY Platform For Pay Per Click Social Media Advertising INTERVIEW

If you haven’t noticed advertising is moving away from traditional online pay per click models of years past. Advertisers are reaching out to both mobile and social media channels for advertising.

Companies like,MyLikes and Sponsored Tweets allow individuals with good social media followings to capitalize on their tweets, likes and recommendations by offering cash based incentives. Blab Bubble is a new startup that’s coming into the same space with a new spin that may work out even better in the long run.

Blab Bubble spent a lot of time and money researching the market to find out where social media advertising is breaking down. They found two key areas that had the biggest pain points.

The first was that many advertisers felt that traditional social media advertising sites were too cumbersome when trying to create campaigns.  The other area that needed improvement was in the startup and small business arena. Most social media advertising companies targeted big brands and enterprise. Of course, with that, they were pricing small businesses and startups out of the market.

Blab Bubble has created a simple, easy to use interface for businesses of any size to set up social media campaigns. The process takes just a few minutes and the campaign is off and running. Blab Bubble also offers very easy to understand pricing, how about $.40 per click no matter who you are.

We got a chance to interview BlabBubble to find out more about this Indianapolis startup and their spin on social media advertising.

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