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Meet Annie Wei Co-Founder of MapVil

Meet Annie Wei Co-Founder of MapVil

It is always a joy to meet people who share a passion for lifting up others and creating ripples of kindness. We met Annie Wei earlier this year when she reached out to us and we were so impressed with what she has started with her Co-Founder, Brandon Lockwood, that we wanted to share it with you. 

 

Annie, tell us how you dreamed up your business idea?

Photo of Annie Wei, co-founder of MapVil

Mapvil, the Mom & Pop Village, was conceived in July 2020 out of a strong desire to support local businesses that are suffering from the pandemic. Though initially conceptualized as a directory to help people discover local, unique “hidden gems,” Mapvil has begun to evolve! We are proud partners of over 100 businesses and have had the opportunity to genuinely connect and build friendships with owners throughout New England. Our favorite part of the Mapvil experience is, and always will be, discovering new local businesses, learning their missions and stories, and forming sincere connections with their owners. 

 Logo fro Mapvil

 

Where did that strong desire to support local come from?

Born and raised in Hawaiʻi, Brandon and I understand firsthand how crucial small businesses are to maintaining a community’s unique identity. Our time living in Massachusetts for the past 6 years has been eye-opening and we’ve loved the opportunity to immerse ourselves in a new culture and community. As big foodies and travel enthusiasts, we constantly seek out new adventures and experiences and have found that many of our favorite memories have been made interacting with small businesses in New England.

 

What are you doing differently than other directories like Yelp?

Not all small businesses have a budget to pay for prime spots on Yelp’s search results, or the know-how to get there, but they still undoubtedly have a significant impact on their local economy and culture. In a competitive, one-click shopping world, our mission is to assist and empower these “mom & pop” shops by providing a platform for them to share their history, products, and services with a broader online audience. We also aim to educate our audience about the benefits of shopping locally. 

Photo of Brandon Lockwood, co-founder of MapVil

Through social media & newsletters, Mapvil regularly spotlights partners (Retail, Food & Drink, Experiences, and Online Businesses) to promote their missions and share our favorite products with our online community. We hope that our collaborations with these unique community businesses will magnify their voices and draw attention to the great work they do and services they provide.

 

What has been your biggest learning as you launched MapVil?

In the past year of befriending New England businesses and developing Mapvil’s directory, Brandon and I have learned the importance of working with companies that stand by their missions. Just as Serve Kindness believes that a business should not only serve their community, but also create the space to develop one, so does Mapvil and the small businesses we have in our directory. We are so grateful to partner with businesses like Serve Kindness that truly embody the notion: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”

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Follow Annie and Brandon’s  journey @mapvilofficial or visit their website www.mapvil.com to learn more!

Check out MapVil’s Summer Box, where you will find some great local products as well as discounts to others including Serve Kindness.

photo of MapVil's Summer Box






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