Comments Off on Footmarks Is Using A Software & Hardware Based Platform For Location Based Engagement0LikeLike 2,975
Seattle startup Footmarks is looking to change the way location based engagement is done for businesses both big and small. They consider themselves a social engagement platform that is based on two patent pending technologies.
The first technology is a piece of hardware called the “Smart Connect Device” this device is a low powered Bluetooth device that works within 400 feet of a smartphone and the battery lasts for two years.
Using this device in your car will enable the end user to receive a stream of localized, real time deals as they approach a business on the road. By combining the device’s technology along with the users social profile, they can receive offers from businesses that are relevant to them. For instance if you were say a golfer and you were passing by Mike’s Super Golf Warehouse, the store could alert you of a deal as you approach.
Another use for the device is through digital billboards. Footmarks hopes to have their technology work in tandem with digital billboards so that the billboard can show an add relevant to a mass of users within 1500 feet. If the demographic profiles of those users approaching the billboard suggested that they were between 35-54 the billboard could show an advertisement for an Elton John concert. Or if the bulk of users passing were 21-35 year old mom’s, you may see an ad on the billboard for Chuckie Cheese.
So of course we had to ask why this technology would trump existing geo-fencing technologies that are currently available on smartphones. According to Footmarks, their technology is scalable up and down whereas geo-fencing technology out there today is to a rather large area.
The company insists that they could set the radius for Footmarks to say 200 feet. That way a department store could have multiple Footmarks set up by department. When the user passes the shoe department they could get one offer, and then turn around and get an entirely different offer in the juniors department.
According to a report on NPR just yesterday, more and more retailers are looking to embrace in-store mobile technologies a growing fad in today’s evolving retail landscape.
Check out the video below to hear about the other things Footmarks has in store for their late Spring 2013 launch.
Comments Off on We Caught Up With Charlotte Startup Rawporter At The DNC 20120LikeLike 1,009
While we were at the DNC 2012 we got the opportunity to crash at the Rawporter crib in Uptown Charlotte. Rawporter co-founder Kevin Davis, recently relocated to New York to help grow the citizen journalism startup. Rob Gaige, the other Rawporter co-founder remains in Charlotte to continue their grassroots efforts in their hometown.
For those of you who aren’t aware, or for those of you who hear the name Rawporter on our videos, Rawporter is a social e-commerece platform for citizen journalism.
On Tuesday evening in the thick of an enormous rain storm, and just before the evening session at the DNC where First Lady Michelle Obama brought the house down, I actually got to join Gaige and Davis for a meal at the Dandelion Market in Uptown Charlotte (that’s their downtown), which is the restaurant where Rawporter was born. It was while eating at Dandelion that Gaige and Davis witnessed a horrific car accident. Like any event like this in 2011, people quickly emerged from every establishment on the block with their smartphones, and immediately started shooting pictures and videos.
Davis and Gaige both noticed that it wasn’t until after the emergency personnel had left and the wreckage was almost cleared that the news trucks began to arrive. When the Rawporter duo got back home and watched the news, sure enough there were no pictures or videos of the actual wreckage.
Sure national cable networks like CNN and Fox News, encourage their viewers to send in videos, but there had to be a way for citizen journalists, and the average people to get their videos to news outlets. In effect there needed to be a crowdsourced video news platform. So Rawporter was born. Davis and Gaige also decided to add another spin and make an e-commerce platform for the buying and selling of these videos and photos.
On the e-commerce side it was quickly discovered that Rawporter was a great way for bloggers with a small staff, or even newspapers and other media outlets with bare bones staff and bare bones budgets, to utilize the platform for great content.
Now news editors and the like can sift through and buy uploaded files, but what’s even better is they can commission a Rawporter user to actually do the work they need. For instance, if there is a convention or conference that the news outlet can’t get to, they can post an “assignment” with what they are willing to pay and the Rawporter community can bid for the assignment. Rawporter even facilitates the transaction.
Naturally with the Democratic National Convention in their back yard, it was an excellent venue to show off their product.
The Rawporter team also pitched at DEMO this past spring and Chicago TechWeek back in July.
Comments Off on Cincinnati Startup ChoreMonster Makes Chores Fun For The Whole Family VIDEO INTERVIEW0LikeLike 1,714
Cincinnati startup ChoreMonster makes chores fun for the whole family. The Cincinnati based startup, founded by Chris Bergman and Paul Armstrong was one of the standout startups in the 2011 class at the Brandery Accelerator in Cincinnati’s Over-The-Rhine neighborhood. The startup was designed around monsters that Paul Armstrong had created and shown to Bergman. The two decided that they really needed to do something fun, positive and profitable with the monsters.
Bergman tells us in the video interview below that he didn’t have the best home life as a kid. He didn’t delve deep into that but you can tell that he is very passionate not just about starting a tech company,but the good that ChoreMonster is going to do for families and kids. He loves the idea behind incentivizing chores and of course the gamification of them as well.
So how does it work?
Parents sign up at ChoreMonster.com. While it’s in beta right now Bergman tells us that all you have to do is share it with your Facebook friends, through a one-click process and you’re into the beta. He also tells us you can find beta invite codes everywhere. At this point the beta is more about putting the finishing touches on the product rather than limiting users at this stage in the game.
After you sign up, you create a profile for your child (children) no worries though the parent controls everything that the child sees.
From there you start setting up chores. You can pick from the list of chores or make up your own. Once you’ve selected a chore you fill out the chore form which asks you to assign it a point value.
The next step is to set up rewards which your child can redeem for points. The parents create the rewards themselves. For my daughter we created a chore “pick up toys and books” we assigned it a value of 5 points and that it needs to be done every day. At 50 points our four year old daughter can redeem it for a new My Little Pony. We added a variety of other chores along with a bunch of awards including things like movie night where we will go see a movie in the theater, after school ice cream trip, and after school trip to the park.
There is an app that we downloaded for her on her ipod touch which tells us she’s completed a chore. Once we verify the chore she gets the points in her point bucket.
The best part may be when the monsters come into play though. Armstrong has designed a great group of monsters that each kid can redeem. They plan on adding a virtual market so the kids can add virtual items to their monsters, buy premium monsters and interact with other kids and other monsters.
Original ChoreMonster artwork like this fills the 3rd floor at the Brandery where ChoreMonster works. It's referred to as the "Alumni Penthouse" (photo: nibletz LLC)
Sure ChoreMonster isn’t going to last forever in a kids life. The average family will probably get great use out of ChoreMonster from the time their child is four to about 12 or 13. They may grow out of it by then, but heck it’s around that age that the chore chart comes down as well.
From a startup business standpoint, with their core set of users theres barely any attrition. After the family has the big family meeting about ChoreMonster, and once the kids start using it, it’s not something that can be easily tossed to the wayside like an app or game you may have gotten bored with.
Bergman tells us the next step is to add an app for the parents so that they can verify chores, track chores, and check up on their child’s progress from their own app.
The two co-founders are filled with heart, soul and laughter and of course creativity. They work out of the top floor of the Brandery which has been dubbed the “Alumni Penthouse” from some of the companies that work out of the space. From the middle of the top floor of the Brandery Bergman and Armstrong can see all the way down to the bullpen where the current class is working hard on their startups.
Both co-founders can often be found mentoring the new startups as well. You can also find them very active in the social, community parts of the Brandery whether it be a Reds game, basketball, beer pong or one of the Brandery’s social gatherings. They’re both as committed to the Brandery community as they were when they were going through the same rigorous program.
Check out the video below where Bergman talks more about what drove him and Armstrong to create ChoreMonster and you can just tell from the discussion this is something he believes in. Investor’s believe in them as well. In 2011 they took the $25,000 top prize in the Cincinnati Innovates competition. They also closed a round of funding at the beginning of the year for $350,000 dollars from private investors and CincyTech.
Comments Off on Video Interview With St.Louis Startup: LockerDome1LikeLike 972
Back in April we asked if St.Louis startup LockerDome was the Groupon for St.Louis,you know the standout startup that stays in their hometown and grows. By all accounts LockerDome is shaping up to be that startup.
LockerDome is a social networking site focused on team sports from just about every level. Whether your son or daughter is on a neighborhood soccer team, you’re a high school athlete playing on the football team or you’re a professional athlete LockerDome allows you to make a profile to correspond with the type of team your on.
With your profile you can keep friends, family, teammates, scouts and anyone interested up to date with how you’re doing as an athlete. For kids, think back to when you had trading cards made with the team photos, now grandma and grandpa across the country don’t need to wait for the mail, they can just go online and check out your profile.
One of the great things about LockerDome is that athletes of all levels can be found on the network. Pro Athletes are often the inspiration for many young athletes and you can find pro athletes from all kinds of sports on LockerDome. Imagine playing pee-wee hockey or pee-wee football and having a LockerDome profile just like your favorite professional athlete.
LockerDome has already attached some major attention. St.Louis native and Square co-founder Jim McKelvey sits on the LockerDome board and has invested into the company through Cultivation Capital. LockerDome has raised $2.1 million to date with their latest round totaling $1.04 million, which closed in June.
Did you know that meat could be social? Of course you did, how many times have you socialized over burgers, hot dogs (is that meat) or great steaks? Well a new startup in the Chicago area is connecting people socially over meat. This time though, it’s about buying meat.
Red Meat Market, like Kansas’ AgLocal, connects people in Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee (for now) to the freshest, farm raised sustainable meat. Red Meat Market has a website and a mobile app which makes it a cinch to order meat in boxes, by dollar amount, choosing the cuts that you want.
With Red Meat Market you tell their platform what you want to spend and it tells you what you can get in your “box of meat” you can get a variety or one choice cut but this way you always stay in the budget that you want, each and every month.
There are actually a couple of social components to Red Meat Market. The first is the ability to split your “box of meat” up with friends, within the site and the app. Red Meat Market handles the payment distribution and everyone gets the meat they want. The meat box can be delivered to your door, or you can opt to attend one of Red Meat Market’s Meat Ups (clever huh). At their Meat Ups, Red Meat Market supplies the beer and the sides and everyone gets the box of meat that they ordered.
By holding a meat up you can meat or meet other Red Meat Market users and socialize or swap cuts of meats between boxes.
Red Meat Market is in a great part of the country to start a business like this. Co-Founder Mark Wilhelms blends his 18 years of digital and marketing experience with his love of meat for a new way to not just sell great, quality, grass fed meat but to connect people who love meat together.
Memphis has got a great startup culture, ecosystem and community. Most of that happens at Emerge Memphis in downtown Memphis Tennessee. Emerge Memphis is a co-working space, home to SeedHatchery, LaunchMemphis and LaunchYourCity. It’s also home to Work For Pie.
Work For Pie is an online community for developers, with a focus on open-source developers. It’s a lot more than a LinkedIn for developers and the only thing like it in existence right now.
The company was founded in 2011 when Cliff McKinney met Brad Montgomery at a Launch 48 event at Emerge Memphis. The two tweaked a different idea into what Work For Pie has turned into today.
Work For Pie’s unique community allows developers to start a free profile that includes a portfolio of their development work. There is also a rating system involved to show the achievements of the developers in the community. The plan as they continue, is to create a site for businesses as well and then link the two so that businesses have a talent pool of top rated developers to choose from for their project.
They’ll be able to do that now that they’ve secured a a $300,000 round in funding. Work For Pie went through the first incubator class at SeedHatchery last year and they are the first startup to get any kind of substantial outside funding round. The two co-founders are excited about working on Work For Pie full-time.
As part of that great startup culture and eco-system in Memphis, they were onhand at 48 Hour Launch this year to help mentor the four startups that are building out in the weekend event. Friendsignia, Paytopia and a host of other EmergeMemphis companies and SeedHatchery graduates also spent the weekend at 48 Hour Launch paying their experience forward.
Check out our interview with both Cliff and Brad about Work For Pie and the startup culture in Memphis:
Comments Off on Indian Startup: iLiftoff Provides Easy To Use Testing Platform For Recruiters INTERVIEW VIDEO0LikeLike 1,063
Indian startup iLiftoff is an easy to use testing platform for recruiters. iLiftoff has it’s own database of test questions for many fields and industries. Their knowledge base of questions covers everything from financial positions to coding. Recruiters can even add their own questions.
HR recruiters will use iLiftoff for pre-employment screening.
iLiftoff has released their platform with tests covering four sectors; programming, finance, law and logic.iLiftoff than breaks those four sectors down to more refined industries like banking and insurance which would fall under the finance category.
iLiftoff also offers companies the ability to create their own tests. These tests can be for recruitment, advancement or to assess training initiatives.
They’ve taken this approach to testing one step further by creating a platform that will work on PC’s and Mac desktops and laptops and also on both Android and iOS tablets.This means that tests can be administered in the field on a wide variety of topics.
While it’s not a glamorous industry, iLiftoff does seem to be addressing a need for both good testing platforms and for companies to easily make up their own tests without having to outsource or take months for a project test.
Check out our video interview with co-founder Raghav Aggarwal below:
Comments Off on Interview London Startup: ColourDNA Discovery Of Things In A New Way0LikeLike 990
If you’re a starutp pitching “discovery” these days you need to make sure you have something unique, fresh and disruptive. London based startup Colour DNA is one of those startups.
Colour DNA isn’t about the things your friends like, it’s about the things that you like.
Once you sign up for the service you pick a color that matches your personality or your favorite color (it’s colour because it’s the British spelling). From there you use an icon with your colour and a heart symbol to mark all the things that you love. Sounds simple so far right?
Then through their property algorithms, ColourDNA matches your likes with other likes across the network. All of these places, foods, events and things also get their own colour based on the spectrum of colours that everyone who loves them has used.
So now you get matched with the things you love and ColourDNA matches you with the people you have the most matches with. Then, ColourDNA takes the things those people love that you don’t love and matches you to those things as discoverables.
Now ColourDNA has helped you discover things and share your things with others. Pretty simple huh?
There’s a lot more to it then meets the eye. Ben Poynter, Co-Founder and CEO of ColourDNA told TechCrunch in an interview earlier this year:
“We are all about discovery new things to enjoy in life based on your interests.. and a few other factors like your favourite colours. We think the interest graph should be about making it easy to discover new things that you’ll love through personalisation, much like Facebook has made it easier for you to re-connecting with your friends.
“I think Pinterest has done a great job as a beautiful and intuitively designed curation tool. We are less a curation tool, and much more a discovery tool… A key feature for us is that a user doesn’t need to know anyone to get an immediately rewarding experience from their unique actions. We push you personalised recommendations by unlocking how your interest graph overlaps with other users, so that you can discover great new things that you would struggle to elsewhere without having to spend a considerable amount of time endlessly browsing.”
Once you download the app itself you’ll see how all of these different aspects of Colour are relevant in ColourDNA. Check out our video below as well:
Comments Off on Interview With NY Startup Edamam Becoming The Worlds Food Knowledge Base0LikeLike 998
Edamam founder and CEO Victor Penev has a lofty goal. He wants his company to become the goto place for food knowledge in the world. While the goal seems quite lofty as I am writing this right now, if you watch the video below you’ll see that Edamam may well be on their way to doing just that.
They launched their consumer facing product, a mobile app which pulls over one million recipes from different sources, at the DEMO conference in April in Santa Clara California. This isn’t just your run of the mill recipes.com app though, the UI is appealing, the navigation is a breeze and you can separate and search through recipes six ways to Sunday.
On the business side Edamam offers an intense, information packed widget for food blogs and websites to tap their vast knowledge base in the same ways as the mobile app and more. They are also offering an API for developer partners to tap that big food database.
In this interview with Edamam they talk about how they plan on being the goto place for food knowledge. In a few years time they hope that the end user will be able to go to the grocery store, by a piece of salmon and get a treasure trove of possibilities wrapped around Edamam information.
Off camera he admitted that he would love to see Edamam being tapped by the users smartphone in the grocery store, and then a smart refrigerator, stove, or other appliance that offers recipes, food guidance, wine recommendations, anything. We’re talking the Jetson’s Rosie in the big data era.
We’ve covered quite a few food startups here at Nibletz, this is the first time that a startup has such a clear path to the future. We really wish these guys well, and after you watch the video you’ll see they have their stuff together and could easily achieve that lofty goal.
Comments Off on Israeli Startup: Drippler A Must Have App For All Android Users VIDEO INTERVIEW0LikeLike 1,048
We got to talk to the team behind the must have Android app called Drippler. Drippler has already seen 1.5 million downloads in the Google Play Store and has a 4.8 rating.
Drippler is a unique mobile app that provides all kinds of information about your Android phone. Once you download the free app from the Google Play Store it detects which Android phone or tablet that you have. From there it aggregates all the information about your phone.
Drippler finds information from manufacturer websites, blogs, app review sites, tech sites and forums and consolidates it into one easy readable stream for you. Now you’ll never be behind when a firmware update comes out or a new app comes out that works better on your device. You can cut through the clutter of the 8 million Android blogs out there (ok there’s not really 800 Android blogs out there, but there’s a lot).
Drippler blends a unique mix of all the relevant information about the phone or tablet that you have the app installed on. If you have multiple Android devices, Drippler will show you just the information for the device you have the app on. So say you have a Samsung Galaxy S II and an Asus Transformer Prime. Drippler on your Galaxy S II will give you Galaxy S II information and Drippler on your Asus Transformer Prime will given you info on that particular tablet.
While at the Capital Connection/TechBUZZ conference in Washington DC this week we got to meet Chris Hertz and Craig Zingerline, the co-founders of Washington DC based startup Barrel Of Jobs. They were one of 28 new startups that presented their business in a four minute presentation on Wednesday at the conference.
Of course by the name, Barrel of Jobs, you already know it has something to do with jobs and careers. With Barrel of Jobs though, we’re not talking bout the next monster.com or Career Builder. Barrel of Jobs is a social recruiting platform to connect employers to the best candidates. Barrel of Jobs is using the social web to help recruiters, employers and even startups, find the best talent.
As the baby boomer generation starts to retire, recruiters and HR Departments are looking to find the best young talent possible. With the current generation in the talent pool we’re all accustomed to the traditional online tools for jobs. Tools like monster.com, Career Builder and other job websites are getting crowded with jobs and applicants. Because of this, more and more talent seekers are turning to the social web to find the best applicants.
Their is a problem with the way recruiters are using the social web right now though, and that is that they really can’t penetrate past the first node in terms of finding applicants. Another problem is the fact that some of the best candidates are already employed, and they’re passive job seekers. This means that they’re employed but may consider changing employers if the best opportunity was presented to them.
Comments Off on Plan Incredible Dates With Israeli Startup Dateini0LikeLike 788
Now you can plan incredible dates by using Israeli startup Dateini.
Dateini allows you to create an account. From there you select the kind of date you want to go on, is it movies, entertainment, wild or romantic? There are several different options for your date.
Dateini than finds three components of your date, dinner, an activity and an after activity place for a drink. If you’re looking for a subdued, intimate evening it may recommend a nice candle lit dinner, walk in the park and then a night cap at a soft piano bar.
One of the best parts of Dateini is after it selects the date for you, it plans out a walking route so you don’t even need to drive from place to place.
You can save your date settings for future use and if you would like you can share your dates as well.
Dateini solves a big problem that many couples have and that is “what to do”. The UI is intuitive and sharp looking and the aggregation is quick. You can also select to have your dates include coupons, deals and discounts to look like a rockstar and stay on a budget.
Dateini was showing off their app at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2012 this week as part of the Israel Pavillion.
Comments Off on Israeli Startup: YouHoo Location Based Social Networking For Friends And Strangers0LikeLike 984
An Israeli startup called YouHoo was in the Israeli pavilion at startup alley at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2012. They have a new spin on social networking, and in particular,location based or proximity based social networking.
As you’ll see in the video below, YouHoo takes your location and polls the people closest to you. It then turns around and shows them to you on your Android powered smartphone. Your actual friends are in pink, your mutual friends are in blue and strangers are in white.
Founder Ohad Assoulin talked to us for a while about his new social network and how he hopes to turn groups of strangers into groups of friends.
YouHoo would make a great icebreaker for trips to the beach, and other locations where a lot of young people are congregating.
Israel is becoming a hotspot for social networking startups, earlier this week we featured a 15 year old named Tal Hoffman from Israel and his new social network based on interests called iTimdi.
Take YouHoo for a spin, sign up for their beta below and watch the video:
Comments Off on LA Startup: Lovvvit Video Interview With Founder Max Gotlieb At TechCrunch Disrupt NY 20120LikeLike 932
Hollywood producer turned startup founder Max Gotlieb had a genius idea in his head and started developing it into what is now known as Lovvvit. We reported on Lovvvit earlier this year. It’s a video review/recommendation platform for people to pronounce their love for their favorite things.
After a few minutes with Gottlieb I quickly grabbed hold of the concept and it’s indeed genius. I thought back on the past seven years (the youtube years) and how many videos I’ve taken and shared from my favorite places. The number is quite large, but none of them ever talked about the places I actually love.
Sure there are birthday party videos, bachelor party videos, playing around videos and other funny stuff at my favorite haunts but not once did I walk in and do a video saying, “I love this place”. Imagine how cool it would be to have crowd sourced video reviews of peoples’ favorite places. It would be genuine, and engaging for both the loyal customer and the merchant.
Right now merchants are growing tired of the group-coupon (Groupon) deal space. Merchants are finding that they are losing their ass in margin to attract one time customers. Now they want better tools to target their frequent customers. Lovvvit provides a platform for just that, and it’s engaging, innovative and fun.
There’s a reward benefit on both sides of the platform as well. If you’re the customer and you do a video review of your favorite places you can earn Lovvvit dollars and upgrade to a premium status. As with any site the more reviews you do of your favorite places, the more trusted you become in the Lovvvit community.
On the side of the merchant, they are granted access to the videos in Lovvvit. They can share them across their own websites and their other social media channels. They can also add coupons and deals to the videos as well.
All of that makes Lovvvit a three fold community of reviewers, people looking to discover places and the merchants.
Check out our video interview with Gottlieb below: