Favr app puts local knowledge in your pocket
By Sara Isenberg
Editor-in-Chief, Santa Cruz Tech Beat
March 26, 2015 — Santa Cruz, CA
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We live in a tourist town so when guests visit they always ask the same things. What should we see? Where should we eat? What beaches are best? Since we are locals we rattle off our rehearsed Best of Santa Cruz lists.
The new, free app favr lets us share our local knowledge instantly with anyone. For instance, you can share your list of favorite farm-to-table Santa Cruz restaurants, tastiest chocolatiers or hipster clothing stores with a tap of the screen complete. The lists can be viewed on a map or you can drill in and find out detailed information about the local business complete with descriptions, blog posts, events, captioned galleries and recommendations from other locals.
In essence, favr offers detailed information about local businesses from two credible sources: the business itself and the people who spend their time and money there. favr combines the best aspects of Yelp, Angie’s List, and the web – without advertising or middlemen – to give you quality, local knowledge worth sharing while on the go.
Founded in Santa Cruz by locals, Clark Brigham and Scott Gallucci, the app launched this week in Santa Cruz and will roll out in the Bay Area and New York in the coming weeks.
Santa Cruz Tech Beat caught up with Brigham and Gallucci to find out more about favr:
SCTB: What is favr?
Clark Brigham: favr is an app that connects local businesses with the community. It’s a naturally symbiotic relationship that we hope to facilitate without getting in the way. We can “favr” our favorite local businesses, places and organizations using the favr app and create personalized recommendation lists that can be shared with anyone we choose.
Imagine you have friends visiting from out of town and they ask you about the best dog friendly restaurants in Santa Cruz. Rather than trying to explain each place and where they can find it, you can share your “Best Dog Friendly Restaurants” list from favr, which would include pictures, descriptions and a map to each place on your list.
We make it easy to capture and share the places where you spend your time and money: hair stylists, mechanics, restaurants, accountants, farmer’s markets, tennis courts, etc. This information can be very helpful when a friend needs a trustworthy recommendation.
SCTB: How does favr connect local businesses and the community?
Scott Gallucci: Most of the local businesses here don’t have the resources to share their story with everyone in the area and favr lets them connect directly to inform and thank their local patrons. We have a free suite of easy-to-use tools, including a post/blog, events calendar, captioned image gallery and a detailed About section, that lets businesses communicate as often as they want with the people who care most.
SCTB: Why did you create favr?
CB: We felt that a lot of excellent small businesses here don’t have the marketing budget to reach everyone who would enjoy their business. So we created a way for fans of those businesses to spread the word to their friends. Small businesses are the backbone of any community and ours is no exception. If they thrive, then Santa Cruz will too.
SCTB: How does favr make money?
SG: We’ll monetize with a similar model to Craigslist. All baseline tools for businesses and consumer use will be completely free. There will be a special suite of niche a la carte tools that businesses can opt into as needed, and use of these extra features will require a small fee. Businesses will never be tied down to a service they don’t have a use for and will be able to control their content and messaging much more than just putting up an ad or an offer on a website.
SCTB: Why is favr launching in Santa Cruz first?
CB: We went to Soquel High School, we live here and we love our town. It makes sense to start here. Also, Santa Cruz cares about the symbiotic relationship between local businesses and community. The favr platform connects communities and businesses through networks of trust, and Santa Cruz already has so many local companies that rely on that relationship. There is a very strong sense of community in the area that highlights the importance of supporting locally and giving back to businesses who have given a lot to the city and county of Santa Cruz.
SCTB: What is the tech climate in Santa Cruz now?
CB: For many years it was sluggish, but in the last 18 months Santa Cruz is becoming a tech hot spot. The downtown area is bustling with startups that are looking to change the world. It’s an exciting time to be an entrepreneur in Santa Cruz.
Learn more here: https://itunes.apple.com/app/favr-by-mainstreets/id943985135?mt=8