About Innovation Nights
Our mission is to help local entrepreneurs get more visibility for their new products by connecting with members of the local innovation community.
Boston is the home of the original Innovation Nights events. It all started in April 2009 as Mass Innovation Nights (MIN). We had a website and a monthly event designed to help local innovators increase the buzz around new products and companies. In 2020, the events went virtual due to the COVID crisis and the organization focused more on the community support aspect.
Every month ten companies bring new products to the event and the social media community turns out to blog, tweet, post pictures and product mentions on Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook to help spread the word. Since 2009, the events have helped to:
— Launch over 1500 new products
— Connect dozens of job seekers and hiring managers
— Profile dozens of local experts
— Launch Innovation Nights events in other cities
The events allow companies to show off Massachusetts-based innovation — you must be local or have a local connection to launch a product). The Experts Corner team has one-on-one conversations with start-ups and entrepreneurs. Innovation Nights were held on site at various venues who donated their space (and often sponsored our team) to further the cause of local innovation. (We’ve held events at the offices of Google, Verizon, Autodesk, Constant Contact, Nutter McClennen & Fish, Progress Software, LogMeIn, & TripAdvisor as well as at Appleton Mills in Lowell, the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation, the IBM Innovation Center, the Microsoft NERD Center, the Mass Challenge incubator, and the Merrimack Valley Sandbox (now Entrepreneurship for All) and others.
We call an Innovation Nights event a “stone soup” event. Remember the folk story of Stone Soup? A stranger or small group of travelers chance upon a poor village. The travelers are hungry but everyone claims to have nothing to share. So the travelers create a fire, hang a pot of water over it and place a stone inside, telling one and all that they are creating “stone soup.” Of course, it will taste better with a little something for flavoring, a carrot, a potato, maybe even a little piece of meat. Soon everyone in the village has contributed “just a little something” and everyone sits down to enjoy the wonderful feast. Innovation Nights are like stone soup. Someone has a space where we can hold an event, with tables and wireless. Other companies have new products to promote Others are social media mavens who can create buzz. Still others donate a few hours of their time and expertise. Soon, everyone is benefiting from the wonderful event we create together.