Have you ever tried to arrange a dinner at a restaurant for 10 of your friends? With all the emails, text messages and phone calls, it can often take longer to coordinate everyone’s schedule than it does to sit down and enjoy the meal.
An experienced operations manager, Ideator Chuck Griffith likes things to go smoothly and efficiently at work and at play. He also enjoys bringing friends together for all types of social occasions with a minimum of hassle. Put the two together and you get Event Safari, a free app he created that helps individuals plan and book activities with their friends without an endless stream of emails, text messages or phone calls.
What’s the Problem?
Griffith’s idea grew out of his dislike for spending inordinate amounts of time arranging get-togethers with friends. While conducting preliminary research, he discovered that friends and family members shared his frustration with the constant back-and-forth text messaging and group chats. Seeking a better way, he conduced an online search of the available tools but failed to identify any appealing alternatives.
“I found several different scheduling tools, but they were all too cumbersome and inefficient,” said Griffith. “I wanted something quicker and easier to use, and that’s when I began thinking about building a better app.”
What’s the Big Idea?
Event Safari makes it easy to organize events in a few simple steps by helping to coordinate schedules and event suggestions. Users list their available time for social functions, suggest activities they would like to schedule, and share the information with friends via the app. Event Safari then reviews everyone’s preferences and finds the best matches.
Event Safari also identifies local discounted offers that match users’ event criteria, and helps local businesses by connecting potential customers looking for ideas about what to do.
Where Is It Headed?
Griffith believes Event Safari’s unique customer-to-business matching techniques has the potential to revolutionize the buying process and change the way group discounts work. He plans to support this process by continuing to build tools and services that make the personal event planning process easy and rewarding.
His biggest challenge so far has been letting go of the idea of building the perfect solution that addresses every event-scheduling problem so he can actually launch the product.
“As an entrepreneur, you want to build something others see value in, but not at the cost of never launching the product,” he said. “Talking to users and other businesses helped us narrow down a core set of features and create a minimum viable product for launch.
“Using Ideator has given us a good a feel for what other companies in the same stage are going through and how they’re overcoming similar obstacles. We’re looking forward to meeting and collaborating with other businesses to help each other achieve our long-term goals.”
Griffith is currently looking for users to beta test the application once it’s ready. Interested users can sign up at www.eventsafari.com.