In another of a series of profiles featuring the latest “cohort” of emerging companies completing The Startup Factory program, ExitEvent’s Laura Baverman looks at SnapYeti. ExitEvent is a news partner of WRAL TechWire.

DURHAM, N.C. – Justin Beard may be the Triangle’s king of marketing stunts, but he’s also a master of persistence.

Beard was turned down twice for The Startup Factory before his startup SnapYeti was accepted for its sixth class this Fall. At times during his two-year journey, he had no idea where his next dollar would come from (even attempting a world record to raise money). But he and co-founder Adrienne Matyi stayed focused on the mission to build a photo contest platform brands around the world could use to engage their fans. What do you think?

Today, 53,000 people have entered a SnapYeti contest—20 percent more than one. 170 brands and companies have sponsored contests, ranging from Dogs In Action promoting Chuckit! pet toys to Board Me promoting Droparoo snow, surf and skateboards to A Christmas Story promoting ShaveMOB razors. And the newest SnapYeti offering is a photo contest widget that brands or companies can embed on their websites or social media pages, to keep engagement on their online properties.What do you think?


SnapYeti claims to be the easiest way for companies to run and promote contests. It’s a free tool, providing the contest rules, contest management and hosting and promotions to its large and growing user base.

At the accelerator’s Nov. 12 Fall Showcase, TSF partner Dave Neal admitted he didn’t get SnapYeti at first but the engaged audience so far has proven it “a powerful and unique brand promotion tool.” Client Petmate, for example, earned 82,000 click thrus, 1,428 new Facebook likes and 2,160 email subscribers after a recent contest, providing $33,000 in value (based on national statistics), Beard told the crowd. The cost to Petmate was the $100 prize.

(Read the full post and see a video of its investor pitch at ExitEvent.