Innovation continues in the Bay Area as RedBeacon takes local search social with its latest partnerships with FaceBook and Big Tent.
It is fascinating to see the power of people when they get together to create meaningful products that add real value to peoples’ lives. RedBeacon’s simple design garnered it the top prize at TechCrunch50 in 2009. The founders – Ethan Anderson, Yaron Binur, and Aaron Lee are former Google product managers.
You could explain RedBeacon as an advanced next-generation yellow pages but with a social responsibility committed to helping you pick the best business to handle your local service needs at the time, location and price right for you. Typing in the service description and problem that you need addressed, allows RedBeacon’s system to match your request with a service provider. You get contacted with a price and these service providers compete for your service. The top three providers are then posted online where you can scrutinize the providers’ profiles, ratings and reviews. Then, you can book the job right online. No phone calls, no hassles, and the matching service is all free.
RedBeacon is so darn clever it even aggregates reviews from Google, Yelp and Yahoo.
Recently RedBeacon rolled out a new application that pings your Facebook friends for their advice. This takes local search to a social level. A Badge for RedBeacon appears on your friend’s Facebook page and if they don’t like your choice of plumber for your leaking taps they can suggest another, and RedBeacon adds another quote for consideration.
Additionally, RedBeacon has formed a partnership with Big Tent, an online community for real-world groups who gather in one place to share and organize communications online. Tapping into group advice has a powerful application especially if the poor plumber left a mess, and the “group” (or “several groups”) knows.
RedBeacon makes sense but unfortunately it services a small geographic area at this time. It takes money and people to drive these concepts throughout North America and abroad. But with early partnerships being product enhancement driven they are on the right track. This is one company to watch.