These 5 mapping tools are helping startup ecosystems around the globe become better connected
Startup maps have become a powerful medium to promote the attractiveness of local tech sectors. Beyond providing a unique and free source of research information, they facilitate networking inside and outside the ecosystems. Some of the maps already serve as effective job marketplaces.
These tech maps are driven by local tech leaders, blogs, and government organizations. For the map creators, it is a great way to build their name, collect data, and establish connections.
Mapme, the plug and play community visualization platform, recently announced a funding round of $1 million from leading investors Gigi Levy, Kima Ventures, Daniel Recanati, and the DRW Trading Group, among others.
Mapme was founded by Ben Lang, 21, who previously held positions at Kampyle, Lool Ventures, and Conduit.
“The funding will be used to further product development and drive the company’s continued global expansion,” Lang said.
The platform provides a seamless solution to customize the look and feel of your map. Mapme also has a jobs panel feature that lists available positions across the map.
Here are several other similar mapping tools.
ZeeMaps enables users to design and publish interactive maps. The service has a variety of features — such as private maps and importing from excel — and has a freemium plan that depends on the number of imported places and maps, as well as branding. The private maps feature is particularly interesting, making the platform a good solution for mapping people and discreet information.
An example of a tech map built with Zeemaps is Robotic Startups, shown above.
While the UI may not be up to par with other solutions, Zeemaps has a huge array of features that others don’t.
3. Build it yourself
The build-it-yourself route requires development knowledge and time. Having these skills would help when using tools such as Google Map’s API and Mapbox.
RepresentLA built an open source solution for creating startup maps. Users need a bit of technical knowledge, but it is still an easier solution than creating something from scratch.
The platform is free, but users must pay to host the website.
One of the top features is its integration with Eventbrite, which displays events in the local scene. Examples of maps built with RepresentLA include: Swiss Startups and Empreende Portugal, shown above.
This solution will give you a quick start to building your map.
5. WordPress / Atlas theme
Setting up a WordPress blog and installing a theme are time-consuming but nonetheless provide you with endless customization. There are themes such as Atlas that are centered around maps and can make a good solution for building startup maps.
The Atlas theme provides a great variety of customization features such as the look and feel, markers, and much more. Other great features they have include a built-in ratings systems, stats, and favorites.
If you’re a WordPress expert and want a customizable solution, this is a good fit. It will require a lot of time setting up and designing, however.
Do you have suggestions for any other tools? We’d love to hear.