Tech Tuesday: Galvanize is galvanizing the Denver tech startup scene

KUSA – For Tech Tuesday this week, we have three companies focusing on “local” in a different way, and each of them local here in Denver, all at the same locale.

These companies all office at Galvanize, a Colorado coworking facility that connects “capital, community and curriculum” in a container designed to spark and support startups such as these three companies.

There are lots of coworking spaces around, but Galvanize is the only one that invests in companies, so it’s getting a lot of attention and is really thriving.

It also has a bar, and beer and startups have been known to go together.

With over 20 innovative community builders providing leadership and over 40 companies utilizing the space, Galvanize organizers say they are providing the innovators of today with the support they need to succeed.

So, the three companies for this week are:

First is a company that is using Colorado – specifically Denver – as its test location. SupportLocal captures word-of-mouth feedback on local merchants of every stripe, from restaurants to shops, doctors to mechanics.

Their emphasis is on connecting local businesses and customers, with opportunities for both. Customers can build a personal network of local businesses that they recommend to friends, while businesses can use this platform to demonstrate support for their community and generate customer referrals.

Launched in April by serial entrepreneurs Justin Sanger and Aaron Lacheta, SupportLocal is chasing the holy grail of a truly local word-of-mouth platform, something that companies from Google to Facebook have attempted, and not yet been able to make work exactly right. Support Local is trying to be the one that can some serious traction.

Our second company today is Closely, which is the latest project of successful Colorado business executive Perry Evans. Closely has two different applications to assist small businesses with their marketing efforts.

Perch is an app which supplies business owners with social media and marketing data on the activities of its competitors, so if you are a pizza parlor and the pizza parlor down the street has a 2-for-1 special one day, you’ll know about it and can match it if you want to.

And the Closely Platform provides those businesses with an easy app for creating, distributing and tracking the success of their own digital marketing offers.

Just as with SupportLocal, this is a hugely competitive space, but Evans has a great track record (Mapquest and Jabber) so this is one to watch for sure.

The third company falls under that category of “early, but interesting.” GoSpotCheck localizes retail data collection by usingemployee and/or user teams to visit particular locations and log answers to data questions via their smartphones or tablets for manager review. This is a great replacement for the paper and clipboard many large organizations are still using.

The goal of this process is what they call “Location Relationship Management,” which functions in a similar way to CRM solutions in managing customer data. Managers can spot trends and make informed decisions based on this crowdsourced and cloud-stored field data.

This post was written by BlogMutt, a company that writes blogs for businesses. Scott Yates, co-founder of BlogMutt, picks companies and events to be profiled. To suggest hot, tech startups for him to feature in future installments, contact him via his blog, or better yet go to a startup event and pitch. He’ll probably see you there.

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