Venture capitalists are clamoring to throw cash at young companies, chasing the next big thing in mobile apps and social media. Recently, jaw-dropping valuations of Facebook, Groupon and Zynga have fueled buzz about a new tech bubble, but behind those billion-dollar behemoths is a new class of groundbreaking innovators:
GetGlue: CEO Alex Iskold discusses the impact of media check-ins on TV advertising and explains why the stickiest mix of rewards includes game mechanics, social interactions and good recommendations.
Crimson Hexagon: CEO Scott Centurino talks about how machine-reading of online sentiment can help marketers move beyond last-generation “buzz” tools and learn how consumers truly feel about brands and competitors.
BlueCava: CMO Dean Harris explores the practical implications of a new digital device behavioral registry that tracks machines instead of people, providing relevant and sequential messaging for brands without compromising consumer privacy.
PlacePunch: CEO Adam Steinberg explains why brands launching their own location-based marketing programs no longer have to agonize over the choice of channels. They can simultaneously manage Foursquare, Facebook Places, and Gowalla from the same dashboard.
Figment: CEO Jacob Lewis reveals why the company’s decision to spend six months beta-testing its new social network paid off – and what they learned by visiting schools, libraries and literary organizations across the country to speak with creative teenagers.