Female Entrepreneur Launches Sprouter: Twitter for Entrepreneurs?
Last week Sprouter, an online networking tool for entrepreneurs that allows for collaboration and connection, was launched. Founder of Sprouter, Sarah Prevette, is also well known as the organiser of Twestifals, and although the seat of the startup is in Toronto, Canada, the setup is global.
What is Sprouter?
Sprouter asks entrepreneurs the question “What are you working on?” Answering this question encourages other members of the Sprouter community to offer tips, support, resources or other relevant members to connect with, all in 140 characters or less. Any member of the site can reply or give a reaction to a comment, or direct message for private information.
The problem that Sprouter wants to solve is that there is now an easy, effective way for entrepreneurs to connect in real-time online, and so an online community that allows small business owners and entrepreneurs to share links, ask questions, and share expertise with their peers is now needed. During the setup of the company, the name of the startup changed from RedWireNation into Sprouter, while its platform morphed into a Twitter look-alike.
Community of Entrepreneurs
“The power of social networking by individuals has been made more than evident, and Sprouter is striving to create that same sense of community and sharing for entrepreneurs,” said Sarah Prevette, Sprouter’s founder and CEO. “Entrepreneurs face struggles on a daily basis – from how to get funding to the best business tools to use. Sprouter can provide the forum for real-time networking and collaboration so everyone can benefit from mistakes and successes.”
Hashtags become topics
Sprouter members can create a topic around a concept, company, association, or event. This allows conversations around a specific topic to be streamlined, and facilitates discussion around events or subjects in real-time. Members of the Sprouter community can also use the search function to find entrepreneurs in their area or industry, or find others who are discussing a topic of interest (like “funding”).
Another Social Network?
Typical social networks allow you to connect with people you already know – whether they are your friends, family, or former co-workers. “Entrepreneurs can harness Sprouter to expand their pre-existing networks,” Prevette says. “When you’re an entrepreneur you don’t want to go to your family or friends for help – you want to talk to your peers who are experiencing the same things you are, and who can help you.”
The idea behind Sprouter is that it’s the people you haven’t connected with yet but who share common goals and interests who can be the most valuable resources. By visiting Sprouter, entrepreneurs can join the community, create a profile, and start connecting with other entrepreneurs globally – the community currently has members from all over the world, including India, Australia, Europe, and North America.
Online & Offline
The company not only connects entrepreneurs on-line but also hosts monthly events called Sprout Up to bring local entrepreneurs together for in-person networking.
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