Monthly Archives: November 2010

Innovation in Massachussetts

Last week I went to my very first networking event – I know, what took me so long! Went to the Mass Innovation Night massinnovationnights.com which was hosted at Clock Tower Place in Maynard. Never been to Maynard either and seems like a really cute downtown area – must head back for a coffee sometime!

The night is set up with a collection of tables for each product or service, and short demonstrations from the most voted for product. Some very interesting products and new services that were showcased and I wanted to talk about a couple that caught my eye.

Spreadable spreadable.com is a word of mouth type referral engine tool. Add a referral button to your website that allows all your happy customers to refer friends to you. The cool thing is that you can customize the message that is sent to the friends – so you get your company/product brand message clearly out there the way you want it. The Spreadable widget can also allow a different customized message depending on whether the referral is via email or a social site like Facebook or Twitter. Reporting is included and you can see how many referral went out, who your biggest (and most important) referrer is in case you want to reward them, and where the majority of your referrals appear – social network, email, mobile, etc.

You can get a free 30 day trial on their website, so it is worth giving it a try. They still have some work to do on it, but seem to be on track for things like the ability to customize discount coupons and tracking how many purchasers came from a specific promotion link. Overall, I think this looks like a great product with the potential to really grow a brand market – turning your customers into your brand advocates.

Another presentation was from Active Interview activeinterview.com who are bringing a new technique to helping you find that perfect candidate to fill your job opening. Instead of just shlepping through endless resumes, you can ask candidates specific questions and see their video responses. You can see scoring for all candidate submissions and because it is all online, all stakeholders can have a chance to review/score and comment on candidates.

The dashboard for each job opening results is easy and intuitive to understand. Each candidate is listed with some details and more importantly, the average score from reviewers and whether the candidate moves forward in the recruiting process.

Depending on the type of job opening you have this may be a great way to quickly determine the best candidates to bring in for face-to-face interviews. Younger and outgoing types may be best suited for this, but maybe people in general are getting more familiar with webcams images of themselves!!! I think this looks like a product that will find it’s market and really take off – as a long as LinkedIn or Facebook don’t gobble it up first!