August’s Technori Pitch is red hot with helpful startups

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“It’s really hot out there, isn’t it,” asks SquarePlanent President and Chief Word Guy Brian Burkhart to the Technori crowd. “This would probably be a great time for something like, I don’t know, a cold beer?”

He cracks open a can of Guinness and pours it into a clear glass.

“There’s a lot of people who look at this beer and they think ‘no thanks, I don’t want nothing to do with that dark, foamy, kinda different looking beer.’ I mean, there’s lots of beers  but there’s only one Guinness, it really stands alone.”

The truth is, Burkhart says, is that Guinness could care less if you love its beer or hate it. He pulls up a photo of a Guinness delivery truck with it’s slogan stretched across the trailer.
“Fortune favors the bold,” he reads.  “Fortune favors the bold. Think about that. It’s an awesome saying!”

While Burkhart’s intro has us thirsty for a pint, wanting to get a piece of that bold flavor, Burkhart explains their marketing is all about beliefs.

“It’s about the idea that this is what I stand for, these are the things that I’m going to do,” Burkhart says. “You have to be bold, you have to tell us what to believe.”

It’s as simple as that. To become successful you must first discover your beliefs. They can be as simple or as complex as you want, but Burkhart says as an entrepreneur, you need to understand that you should be working with people with the same beliefs.

“We have this idea in our brain that the goal is to work with everybody. We can’t. We just simply don’t have the time, the bandwidth, the expertise, the ability to work with everyone; it’s a bad goal, it’s fundamentally flawed,” Burkhart says. “The goal is to work with those who believe what you believe.”

So next time you advertise your business, do what Guinness did: Tell us your beliefs, don’t show us your track record, since those beliefs provoke actions.

And now, on to the startup pitches of the night:

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CentUp – @GetCentUp
“We’ve all been tricked. We’ve been tricked into believing that the Internet is free – read content, watch video’s, learn about anything and it will cost you nothing,” says Len Kendall, biz dev at CentUp. “But that really isn’t the case because you’ve got ads.”

We browse the Internet and visit our favorite blogs, but we’re paying for this “free” content with our time, attention and data tanks to text links, pop ups and pre rolls, Kendall says.

“We are CentUp and we’re here to make the Web a better place,” he says. With CentUp you can donate money to your favorite content creators and charities for content you like. Just like Tom’s donates a pair of shoes for every purchase, CentUp gives part of your donation to charities.

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UrbanBuddy –  @UrbanBuddy

UrbanBuddy Co-founder and Global Director Paul Brogna recently went on a last minute trip to California.

“I didn’t have time to research the trip, nor did I have a local to really rely on.” Brogna says. “So here in lies the problem: What do I do? I arrived in San Jose Airport and in that airport I was confronted with that gut-wrenching feeling of ‘where am I what do I do?’”

With the UrbanBuddy app, there’s no need to filter through outdated Yelp reviews. You can ask questions and get suggestions from the experienced locals in the city you are visiting.

“Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could open an app and immediately communicate with a local to tell us exactly what we wanted to do or needed to do?,” he questions. By messaging on of your destination city’s curated locals, you can get a response to your question in a matter of 10 minutes. The six-month-old company is currently looking for locals to help in their effort and users to keep asking questions.

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We’ve all been there. We go to an event, sit down and realize we know no one in the room, says LinkUp Founder Iqbal Brainch. When expectations of making some mad networking connections fall flat, don’t let it happen again. Use LinkUp next time you attend an event. Like Tinder for business connections, LinkUp helps you meet others at industry events.

“Its not enough to be in the right place in the right time,” Brainch says. “It’s really all about who you know in that place.”

Brainch came up with the idea when a family friend showed him the Tinder dating app. Just like Tinder connects singles, LinkUp connects business professionals that are attending the same event, as well as give you access to their career information from LinkedIn.

Clarity Box @TheClarityBox

ClarityBox Founder and sole employee Claire Lew is helping CEOs see their company more clearly. The Northwestern grad left her job 10 months ago and has since helped companies improve by uncovering issues. Whole most companies use one-on-one interviews and surveys to rate employee satisfaction, Lew dives deeper to unveil employee concerns.

“How do you know if someone is telling you the truth?,” she asks. “How do you know within that one-on-one or feedback survey if someone’s holding something back?”

Through Lew’s month-long process she peels back the layers of a company and finds the truths by recognizing the emotion and body language responses of employees while she interviews them.
“The problem lies below the surface like an iceberg just waiting until it’s too big to ignored,” Lew says.
She has already worked with 37signals and Starter League and helped them improve.

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SceneTap @SceneTap

SceneTap, the real-time app, is back in Chicago. To celebrate their move, they came to Technori to give us all an update.

“It’s Thursday night, you’ve got friends in from out of town,and you’re tasked with the responsibility of planning the night out,” says SceneTap Co-Owner and Biz. Dev. Andrew Nieman. You arrive at the bar, he says, and it’s dead.

“It’s a situation we’ve all been in before and it begs the question: Wouldn’t it be great to know what a place was going to be like before you got there,” he says. What if you could find out if the party is poppin’ or floppin’ before you head out to the bar of your choice? Initially marketed towards bar owners,  SceneTap allows you to see real-time updates on the amount of people in a bar, their age and gender.