Founder& CEO of Nocto, David Franzen, is a Swedish business student&
Get Started Alumnus ’16
Our Get Started programme has helped over 270 first-time entrepreneurs move from idea to actual business in 10 weeks. This post is part of an ongoing series where we profile the many different kinds of entrepreneurs that have been part of the programme.
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2016 has been the year of FOMO: Fear Of Missing Out, the fear that you’ll ever miss out on a great party. David figured out a way to control this FOMO. He realized that there wasn’t any way to find out how good a party was, without actually going there yourself. He created an app that now hosts real time pictures and videos of ±3000 venues. What was the key to his success and his plans for the future?
Nocto is the nightlife& events app that wants to revolutionize the nightlife scene. Nocto lets you see real time insights, from within the clubs around you, posted by the people who are there. You’ll always be at the right place at the right time, because you can feel the atmosphere and hear the music. When people like your insights, you collect Nocs. Nocs is the apps’ currency that you can spend on drinks, entrances or que-skips. This way, users become the promotors of the venues. This real-time info is a contribution for venues too. They now have accurate access to the demographic information of their audience and where their visitors are spending their Nocs on.
How does it work?
To post insights in a certain club, you have to check in, which you can only do within a 100 meters away, so all the insights are guaranteed from within that club. ‘This distinguishes us from other social media, where you can tag any place at any moment, even when you’re not even around. So basically, Nocto covers a triangle: the users upload content into the app, the app provides information to the venues and as a result the venues can offer deals to the users. It’s always possible to check in and upload data, and by promoting through Nocto, venues are actually directly promoting to the people who are looking to go to a club.
I followed the minor entrepreneurship, hosted at the Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship, in September 2015. Originally, we started with 4 founders, but soon after the minor the rest of the team left due to obligations at the university. I was very serious about it early on and we apparently had some other expectations. After the minor I followed the Get Started programme!
On January 27th, 2017, we launched our Nocto app in the app store! We now have ±600 users. We’ve been restructuring our database, so we can increase our users without increasing the costs. The next step is the app promotion! Thanks to our many ambassadors and sales strategy, we now have regional managers all over Europe and ±3000 venues in the app where people can check into and upload photos. The next step is to contact all these venues and subscribe them. At the moment, we have about 7 venues that have already signed up.
“The Get Started programme provided everything from validation, mentorship, constructive criticism and users. A stepping stone to making it more than just a concept.”
My team consists of 22 people whom I’m very happy with. They are all friends of mine. We’re going through a transition phase right now. So far, everyone worked on a volunteer basis because they think it’s an amazing concept, believe in the future or wanted to build some practical experience. From this month onward, we’re looking to settle contracted positions to increase the structure and organization of the team.
Why clubs want Nocto
For clubs, there are 4 main benefits. They gain insights by receiving direct feedback from their customers. They can promote events directly to the targeted audience. By Nocto’s statistics, they get to understand their audience and know how to please them. By making deals with their visitors, they’ll attract a larger audience and reward their loyal customers.
The future lies in tourism! At the moment, we’re talking with booking.com and we’re applying at accelerators. People usually don’t directly understand that we’re talking with booking or hotel chains. But at the place you live, you already have a basic understanding about what you like or not. At home, you can afford to have a bad night out. But when you only have 2 nights in a different town, you want these nights to be perfect. If you don’t have the basic information, you’d have to be more efficient, since you can’t afford to have a bad night out. So targeting the tourist industry is actually a pretty big step forward.
I think that in the future, the biggest challenge ahead will be handling the growth. Everybody talks about ideas needing to be scalable, which Nocto definitely is. But I think that the problem associated with being scalable is also being able to manage that scalability. It means that you have to be active in many different places with a big team, which is quite hard to organize. Nonetheless, this is obviously is a good problem to have.
Being an entrepreneur
Last December, in 2016, I joined the Get Started programme. The Get Started programme was actually great because it connected me with other people who were in a similar stage. Up until that point it was sort of only ‘me with an idea’, and a lot of interested people. But the programme got me in contact with mentors, who are all experienced people in the legal field, finances and marketing. This way, I could get some very high quality advice which was very useful, specifically the legal advice. Also, to be surrounded by other entrepreneurs and the flex workspaces were very inspiring. Being an entrepreneur is amazing, its freeing in a way. My whole childhood I expected to work at top firms, but I never realized that there’s also a possibility to start your own business. Also experience wise, by being in the centre of a startup, I’m literally in contact with so many different kinds of people from different backgrounds: developers, lawyers, sales, marketing, and so on, whom I’m learning a lot from. Even if I was doing three different internships at different companies, I’d never get the experience as I’m gaining now.
All in all, I think the Get Started programme was great and would definitely recommend.
“The Get Started programme connected me with people in similar stages, and many experienced mentors”
Download the free Nocto app!
Nocto is looking for 3 regional managers: For Scandinavia, for Spain& Portugal, and one for Switzerland, Austria& Italy combined. More Info
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