The Start-up: Krowde

Krowde, a mobile channel for your brand. I am one of the co-founders. From the very beginning we thought we are onto something big. But big ideas take time to develop and there are twists and turns as we refine our product, our market and every aspect of the business. Right now we are about 8 months from the original concept of Krowde, we are building our MVP (Minimum Viable Product) and have been talking with investors for months. Going through the whole process of creating a new Internet service for clients is one thing. It’s another thing to do it yourself. We are currently pitching Krowde. If you are interested in learning more about Krowde as a potential investor, please contact us.

The User Interface: Shmoozfest

Shmoozfest, is a web and mobile event application that is still in Beta that is groundbreaking in that it really can improve a conference or any event. There have been a dozen event add-on solutions in the market. I regularly have attended iDate, which now always has a mobile/web add-on solution. However, I never use these mobile and online add-on event solutions because they are pretty useless. Shmoozfest has the potential to change all that. I have been brought in as a product manager to layout the mobile app. In this User Interface roll, I have looked around and viewed new types of mobile apps that are really ground-breaking, and have used these concepts to change how Shmoozfest looks and feels on mobile. It has to be easy to use and useful. I believe that a good UI probably does not require users to learn how to use it. Most users will just go right at it and start working with Shmoozfest. Yet this program will harness an enormous amount of sophistication.

The Simplification: RealConnex

RealConnex can be described as meets Linkedin for the Real Estate business. It is one serious social network. I was hired as a consultant onto RealConnex for about 8 months to work with the founder on getting his features in order. This meant working in the roles of product manager, project manager, QA (Testing), UI (User Interface) and any other task they needed from me. RealConnex’s original plans were so far ahead of anything in the market and so complicated that most development teams and customers would be totally confused at what they were looking at if the site did not simplify. We needed to help them focus on getting the core features prioritized, designed and ready for a development team. What I did was help reduce a lot of the complexity in the original concepts to a level that is usable, understandable, even easy. RealConnex is fully live now in Beta at and I wish them the best of luck. It is really a groundbreaking social network that will change that industry.

The Pivot: ConnectAddress

ConnectAddress uses social media to assist buyers in finding a shipping address. When we first met with the management team of what was then Gift Accept, they had spent a year trying to develop a Facebook-based e-commerce site, which had very little marketing direction. They had it working. They had products for sale, but they were just affiliate products, and the company really did not have a solid value proposition for visitors. They had built a bunch of great technology, but even that begged the question of why build an e-commerce engine at this stage in the Internet’s evolution. The most important thing we discovered while working with Gift Accept is they had solved a problem nobody had in the market. At that point in time people were finally tossing their address books, and we figured out that as many as 500 million times a month somebody worldwide was emailing, texting, chatting or calling a gift recipient asking for a shipping address. This is disruption and they had figured out how to ask the recipient through Facebook to enter the address and facilitate dropping it into a shipping form. We assisted them in pivoting to a new concept called ConnectAddress and ultimately helped them switched direction from being an e-commerce play to a technology company.

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