1. November 2020

Dating Games: Exactly Just Exactly How Dani Fankhauser is Reinventing Internet Dating

The Crunchbase “Female Founder Series,” is a number of stories, Q&As, and thought-leadership pieces from glass-ceiling-smashers whom overcame chances, raised financing, as they are now leading companies that are successful.

Dani Fankhauser, co-founder of XO, is utilizing enjoyable and games generate an improved relationship software experience.

An adopter that is early of dating, Dani isn’t any complete stranger to your battles and weakness that originated in conventional apps. In a period where connection is more valuable—and difficult—than ever, she set out together with her co-founders to produce a fresh and new take for internet dating. The effect is XO—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 asiandate about her change from journalist to business owner, the brand new challenges she has faced from branding to fundraising, in addition to lessons she’s learned as you go along.

Q: inform us the whole tale behind your company’s founding: What led one to begin e-commerce?

A: straight Back this season, I became the initial of my buddies to try internet dating, and proudly, once I convinced a pal to participate OkCupid, she came across her spouse. I became additionally one of several journalists that are first reveal Tinder. My co-founders had built a couple of viral games that are mobile whenever I came across them during the early 2019, I became individually fatigued by internet dating, therefore I knew it had been time for one thing fresh and brand brand new. We designed XO to integrate games into dating making it an event that is perhaps perhaps perhaps not demoralizing and draining, but enjoyable.

Q: What issue does your business re re re solve, or try to? what exactly are probably the most significant effects your business has received up to now?

A: Our mission is always to assist people build and strengthen connections that are genuine. The word “connection” gets a poor rep these days because social web internet web sites do literally link us, but make you feel disconnected. Games have back-and-forth that is unique and aren’t too severe, and that’s why they’re employed for team-building, for instance. Games powerfully change the tone of an discussion.

I became amazed to know very early individual feedback that 100% of people’s interactions on XO was indeed good and that users had been saying every thing they came across was thoughtful and respectful. Needless to say it was our intention in supplying an interaction that is different other dating apps. I additionally think we’re attracting the kind of those who don’t utilize other apps due to the give attention to look, so users are fulfilling each person on XO than they might on Tinder.

Q: In exactly what methods you think differently regarding the industry than the others do? In exactly what means have you been disrupting your industry?

A: As soon as we first began pitching, we’d hear, “Wow, just just how has no body thought for this yet?” Dating and games—it’s some of those ideas that are great think some body will have done currently. My experience arises from building online communities around content that resonates, and my co-founders have actually built a lot of games nonetheless they aren’t your standard competitive, graphics-driven games. With a unique take on what a game is and what dating should be, and that’s why XO has so quickly hooked an eager fanbase so we came to it.

Q: What had been one hurdle that is unexpected challenge you encountered when starting out?

A: Choosing title for the software is one thing that appears enjoyable it is really very hard. The ability to communicate what it is you do in very little space matters—it’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 “dating and games” in as few letters as you can, therefore we nailed it with XO. We really had a name that is different employed for about 10 months before stumbling on XO. you will find numerous variables—trademark supply (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 you’ll find on UrbanDictionary. One title we liked in early stages was Wink, however some individuals linked it with an adult guy winking at a woman that is young so we decided the creepiness element ended up beingn’t well worth it, and even though lots of people liked the title.