Interview with Loopnote
TechAddress: Tell me a bit about your company, what it does and what’s your value proposition?
Loopnote: Loopnote is all about social notifications. It allows people to connect not just through their personal affiliations with each other but through the topics of interest they have in common. Our goal is to offer a service that is really fun and simple to use but also useful. The way it works is very simple. People create topics (loops) about a certain subject (i.e. best jazz events in town). Others then subscribe to the topic to ‘stay in the loop’. Alerts created by the topic owner are sent via Mobile, Email, IM, or RSS, depending on the subscriber’s preference. The subscriber never has to share any personal information with the topic owner and can unsubscribe at any time.
Loopnote: I think our product experience is what sets us apart. There are a few new startups doing group SMS applications but most of them are complicated to use. Also, unlike other services, Loopnote makes subject areas the main focus because we’re all about getting the community to communicate. We fundamentally believe that there’s a lot of really valuable and untapped content in each community. Loopnote taps into that pool of content by creating a fun and useful way for friends or strangers to communicate with each other. In every community there are content owners and content consumers. We’ve created a tool that will enable this marketplace.
TechAddress: What are some of the main features?
Loopnote: We’ve made the service very easy for anyone to use. When a user signs up they can setup their email, mobile, and IM delivery preferences. After that they can subscribe to any public topic and choose how they’d like to receive alerts. Personally, I prefer to get daytime alerts via IM or email but weekend related alerts (for my favorite local bands) via mobile. That makes it easy for me to stay in the loop. As users become more familiar with the tool, they’ll discover some really useful features like the ability to create topics that others can post to using a posting password (useful for clubs with many coordinators). Topic owners can also control who is allowed to subscribe to their topic (anyone vs. only people with the subscription password). We’ve also recently added the ability to post to your topic from a mobile phone. This last feature is my favorite because I can use my phone to send an alert to my topic called “Random funny thing I just saw…”
TechAddress: Who’s your target customer or audience?
Loopnote: That’s a great question. Our target audience is the everyday consumer as well as the enterprise looking for an outsourced notifications platform. Our consumer site, loopnote.com, will be used by individuals, community organizations, music bands, schools, groups of friends, sports teams, and groups we haven’t even thought of.
TechAddress: Any new things in particular that you’re working on right now?
Loopnote: Right now we’re preparing for our private beta where we’ll invite some of our earliest registrants to help beat us up a little bit.
TechAddress: Where do you see your company heading in the future?
Loopnote: The first thing we’re going to be doing is adding some new features after our beta period is over. There are already a lot of features we have in the queue for . After that we’ll probably be working on a totally new product within our umbrella company, No Sleep Media (http://www.nosleepmedia.com).
TechAddress: Any negative feedback or criticism regarding technology and services?
Loopnote: Several of our test users have asked that we make it easier to sign up for mobile, IM and Mobile delivery. When a user signs up we send a unique verification code to each type of account (IM, Mobile, Email). This process definitely adds a few minutes to the registration process but we’re pretty confident that we’ve made it as easy as we can and that we’re making sure to protect people’s accounts.
TechAddress: So what would you say is the guiding principle behind your company?
Loopnote: The guiding principle behind No Sleep Media is to create applications that we can’t wait to use. The guiding principle behind loopnote.com is that we all want to stay in the loop without working so hard at finding information. If I want to know who’s playing at Larimer Lounge every Friday then I’ll subscribe to their topic and get alerts. That’s a lot easier than going to their website and looking at their calendar, especially when you consider that most of us are too busy to even remember to look in the first place.
TechAddress: What is the mission of your company and what are you bringing to the market that is innovative?
Loopnote: Our mission is to connect people based on “what” they know, not “who” they know. Our belief is that we all have some information that others want to know about and with Loopnote we hope to facilitate this information sharing in a fun yet completely safe manner. Subscribers never need to divulge personal information to topic owners.
TechAddress: Where are you in terms of funding and your lifecycle?
Loopnote: We have used private funds to develop loopnote.com. Our goal is to grow the business using funds raised through venture capital, membership fees and sponsorship deals.
TechAddress: If your technology or service is not formally launched yet, when’s the launch date?
Loopnote: Our plan is to launch the public site in November 2006.
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