Dec 02, 2013 04:55 PM EST
Our special holiday interview features momtrepreneurs Soleil Moon Frye aka “Punky Brewster” and veteran tech entrepreneur Kara Nortman discussing their newest venture and launch of a new Android app for Moonfrye.
Soleil Moon Frye and Kara Nortman are “living out loud" and on a mission to support the parenting journey with Moonfrye, a Los Angeles-based start-up. Moonfrye recently announced its availability of its Family-Friendly Photo Sharing App earlier this week for Android smartphones and tablets.
Work, life and family with Soleil...
Question: Congratulations on Baby Number 3! What is your take on getting children to love technology today?
Soleil Moon Frye: My girls love technology and I really think it's in their DNA. They are growing up in a time where technology is at their fingertips. I think one of the most important things is finding the balance and making sure that they still have creative play outdoors using their imagination. They do both. Lots of hands on crafting and of course playing with our app as well.
Question: How would you like to see Moonfrye evolve in the long term?
Soleil Moon Frye: I love the idea of bringing the digital and physical experience together. I can't wait for us to launch our physical product and see what families are creating both online and off.
Question: The app has special themes for the holidays. Where do you get your creative crafting inspirations?
Soleil Moon Frye: I've always loved the holidays. They are a big part of our lives and we love creating together. There's lots of crafting, baking and decorating in our house around the holidays and the whole family is a part of the process and they certainly are my inspiration for design.
Question: How has social response been so far with having 1.5m Twitter followers and 500,000+ Facebook fans?
Soleil Moon Frye: The response has been great. People have been loving the app and it has been a blast to see their creations.
On successes - past, present and future with Moonfrye
Question: With the new company Moonfrye and the launch of the first app, your Punky Brewster legacy, motherhood, recent projects like the new show Home Made Simple series on OWN, your book Get the Party Started! and being a Target Mommy Ambassador, What advice would you give towards success and for moms living in today’s digital age?
Soleil Moon Frye: I don't think there has ever been a better time to be a momtreprenuner. Social media and technology is at our fingertips. I'm so inspired to see the stories of moms and dads starting companies from their own homes. It's a constant balancing act, but one that I find a constant inspiration from.
Vision, strategy and more...
Question: What is your overall vision and strategy towards success for Moonfrye?
Kara Nortman: Moonfrye is looking to become the leader in creative activities for families by creating an online to offline creative experience. We have launched our flagship app that helps parents feel good about handing their child a mobile device and is something families can do together. The Moonfrye app helps create memories around family holidays and special life events (the soccer game, the ice skating competition, or a trip to the dentist) and is organized around themes, both time of year (think Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc.) and make-believe (think everything from Rainbow to DJ). Our users can create and share a photo memory within these themes and then can extend the experience into a real world creative activity with our theme-based DIY crafting projects.
Question: Being both mompreneurs, How did you both decide to come together to initially launch your company?
Kara Nortman: Soleil and I were introduced through one of our venture capitalists. When we first met, we quickly realized we shared a deep passion for building not just a product, but a company that would empower moms to be their best selves--with support and without judgment. In the weeks following that initial meeting, Soleil and I found ourselves hanging out with our daughters, sharing our life stories and gabbing late into the night about mission, culture, products and people that inspired us. We shared common pain points as parents - how to integrate technology into our kids lives in a way that made us feel good about how our kids were spending their digital time and how to ultimately connect the digital experience to a real world creative experience.
Question: Moonfrye app helps both children and parents. What key advantages do you see them benefiting from?
Kara Nortman: The phone can be an isolating experience. Too often we bury our noses (or our children’s noses) in an app that removes us from our surroundings. The Moonfrye app allows families to come together to capture a moment with a photograph and then craft it into a memory that delights parents and kids. It allows children to be a part of the process and not just the subjects of our incredible photos. The app can be used in the moment or after the moment has passed, and makes the experience memorable. It is also wildly creative and allows both kids and parents to use fun photo edit tools, themed stickers and backgrounds to craft amazing creations. In a tech-centric world, we inspire families to be creative, to enjoy the process, and to share their memories in a unique way that bridges the gap between screen time and family time.
Question: What differentiates your company within the photo-sharing market?
Kara Nortman: We have developed a patent-pending technology that auto-detects human forms in photographs, extracts them from the photo and inserts them into a theme-based background. The experience is like a mini Photoshop where users can combine photos together in awe-inspiring ways –either by inserting human images into Moonfrye designed themed backgrounds (e.g., a DJ booth, a circus, a candy-filled wonderland, a sports stadium or exotic destinations like Tokyo and London) or into other backgrounds created by the user ("Make Your Own" theme).
Social sharing and #moonfrye
Question: Is there anything else that you feel Android users or the Android market should know about Moonfrye?
Kara Nortman: We have a very high social share rate. Over 10 percent of saved creations are shared socially. When people engage with Moonfrye they are very proud of their creations and want to show the world. You can check out the Moonfrye Team page on Facebook or see some of our community’s awesome creations by searching #moonfrye on Instagram.
Moonfrye is a really cool, family-friendly and useful photo-sharing app for the Android Market. The new app is available for Android devices with version 4.0.3 and higher. Moonfrye aims to bridge families together in the digital age by creating both online and offline new memories and fun experiences through cutting edge photo-sharing.
Get ready to create new memories in celebration of this year’s Holiday season!
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