Daytripper App Launches, Entrepreneur Shares His Mobile Success

By Amanda Lewan on October 29th, 2015 / Comments

We all have a friend or neighbor who’s got that idea for a great app, but they usually don’t turn it into a profitable venture. They may want to have a conversation with Michigan entrepreneur Tim Tolbert, who makes his living designing and launching beautiful apps.

Tim first started started working in the world of mobile app development at a startup which sold a couple years ago, Front Door Insights, in Ann Arbor. The mobile marketing and digital advertising company sold to the industry leader Mobivity back in May 2013.

“I decided to work on my own apps next,” he said. ” I’m the idea guy and the marketing guy, and I work with local technology teams.”

Tim’s then created an app called “Doughbot” which helps you find local donuts in your neighborhood. It turned into a profitable project, receiving national media attention and it was selected by Apple in 2014 as a best new app. Now, his new app Daytripper Detroit helps the you experience a day trip to the city of Detroit. Tim who’s based in Harbor Springs and spent a lot of time in Ann Arbor, is originally from Metro Detroit. He was inspired to do something to help the revitalization of the city.

“I’ve always been a huge proponent of Detroit. Over the last five years, with all of the news of the resurgence there still was not a really good guide to help people experience the city,” said Tim. “We want you to land in Detroit and find the cool restaurants to go to.”

How does the free app work? It comes with maps and information that’s personally curated to show you the 75 of the best places to eat, shares insights from entrepreneurs, lists historic sites like Hitsville USA, and allows for crowdsourced content that can be updated easily through a built in content management system

“I wanted it to be current and relevant all the time. So we have a content management system so I can update the app seamlessly,” he said. “They don’t have to wait to go through the app store. There’s a brand new wine place in Detroit called Vertical Detroit and I was able to just add it yesterday!”

Tim also shared some great advice for us if you’re starting your own app or want to turn your idea into a reality. What does he tell people with app ideas?

“I have people coming up to me every day with their ideas for apps. The first place you need to start is the Apple store,” he said. “Find out if it’s been done and if it’s been done badly. You can always make something better and make something new happen.”

But then what’s next? How does one make a profitable idea? Tim says you have to be very careful. It’s difficult to be successful in the app store when there’s over 1 million apps to compete with. He suggests finding a problem to solve and doing it in a beautiful way, focusing on high quality design. He also suggested being very careful for your budget, hiring talented freelance help from online sites, etc.

Then, when you’re seeking traction, you should see it should come easier.

“You can create a user base and good following by making the app easy to use and interesting,” he said.

Check out the new app Daytripper Detroit which launched on October 1st.

About the Author

Amanda Lewan

Amanda Lewan

Editor @michipreneur. Co-founder Bamboo Detroit. Follow me @Amanda_Jenn. I love telling the story of entrepreneurs and innovators.