Earlier this week I had the opportunity to sit down for lunch with Laurence Hooper and Dan Goodman, the creators of Loladex. I discussed what their new application is about. The new search service has been launched completely on Facebook. The purpose is to integrate social features into search and include reviews of local businesses. This service could build a dedicated user base just as Yelp has given the simple ability to post reviews of places you have visited.
If you look closely, Loladex has limited each of their reviews to 140 characters, the same number of characters limited to text messages. As I mentioned in conversation with the Loladex founders, it would be amazing if I could get off a plane anywhere and simply text what the best local restaurants are. The system would return the results based on what my friends have replied with.
I mentioned the same thing to D.C. based Hungry Machine previously when they launched their relatively popular Restaurants application. The best part of Loladex is that you can rate practically anything. Want to find a local doctor or dentist? Check out how your friends have rated them and get feedback. Currently I use Twitter for asking these types of questions but Loladex could bring this service to the masses.
The primary challenge for Loladex will be building an initial user base. If I can review any company that is in my community and get responses via text as well as through Facebook, I’ve found a useful service. If my friends aren’t using though it’s not very useful for me. If Loladex can build a dedicated user base I can see this application gaining a lot of traction. Considering that Loladex is based in D.C. I can only hope for their success!