The Crunchbase вЂњFemale Founder Series,вЂќ is a few stories, Q&As, and thought-leadership pieces from glass-ceiling-smashers whom overcame the chances, raised money, and are also now leading companies that are successful.
Dani Fankhauser, co-founder of XO, is making use of enjoyable and games to generate a much better relationship app experience.
An very early adopter of on line dating, Dani is not any complete complete stranger towards the battles and weakness that originated in conventional apps. In a period where connection is more valuableвЂ”and difficultвЂ”than ever, she put down together with her co-founders to produce a new and new take for internet dating. The effect is XOвЂ”the dating that is first with icebreaker games. The unique back-and-forth of games makes it much simpler for users to start out conversations and build better connections.
We asked Dani about her change from journalist to business owner, the brand new challenges she has faced from branding to fundraising, as well as the classes she’s discovered on the way.
Q: inform us the whole tale behind your companyвЂ™s founding: What led one to begin ecommerce?
A: straight straight Back this season, I became the very first of my buddies to try internet dating, and proudly, she met her husband after I convinced a friend to join OkCupid. I became additionally one of many very first reporters to talk about Tinder. My co-founders had built a couple of viral mobile games and once I met them at the beginning of 2019, I happened to be individually fatigued by internet dating, and so I knew it absolutely was time for something fresh and brand brand new. We designed XO to incorporate games into dating to really make it an event that is maybe not draining and demoralizing, but fun.
Q: What issue does your business re re re solve, or try to? What are probably the most significant effects your business has already established up to now?
A: Our mission is always to assist people build and strengthen connections that are genuine. The word вЂњconnectionвЂќ gets a poor rep these times because social internet web sites do literally mail order brides asian link us, but make you feel disconnected. Games have back-and-forth that is unique and arenвЂ™t too severe, and that’s why theyвЂ™re utilized for team-building, as an example. Games powerfully change the tone of a relationship.
I happened to be astonished to listen to very early individual feedback that 100% of peopleвЂ™s interactions on XO have been good and therefore users had been saying every thing they met really was thoughtful and respectful. Needless to say this is our intention in offering an interaction that is different other dating apps. In addition think weвЂ™re attracting the sort of individuals who donвЂ™t make use of other apps due to the concentrate on look, therefore users are fulfilling each person on XO than they might on Tinder.
Q: with what means do you consider differently regarding your industry than the others do? With what methods have you been disrupting your industry?
A: As soon as we first began pitching, weвЂ™d hear, вЂњWow, exactly how has no body thought of the yet?вЂќ Dating and gamesвЂ”itвЂ™s some of those great some ideas youвЂ™d think some body might have done currently. My experience originates from building online communities around content that resonates, and my co-founders have actually built a lot of games nevertheless they arenвЂ™t your standard competitive, graphics-driven games. With a unique take on what a game is and what dating should be, and thatвЂ™s why XO has so quickly hooked an eager fanbase so we came to it.
Q: What had been one unforeseen hurdle or challenge you encountered when starting out?
A: Choosing title for the application is one thing that appears enjoyable it is really very difficult. The ability to communicate what it is you do in very little space mattersвЂ”itвЂ™s how we break through the noise to investors and journalists before we even get to launch as a consumer app. We desired a thing that screamed вЂњdating and gamesвЂќ in as few letters as you possibly can, and we also nailed it with XO. We really possessed a various title we utilized for about 10 months before stumbling on XO. There are plenty variablesвЂ”trademark access (the logic around what you could get is astonishing), social/domain access, term associations individuals make (we went a couple of studies), astonishing alternate definitions youвЂ™ll find on UrbanDictionary. One title we liked in early stages was Wink, many individuals linked it with an adult guy winking at a woman that is young so we decided the creepiness element ended up beingnвЂ™t well well worth it, and even though lots of people liked the title.