Friends often play an integral role in our lives where they are a constant source of happiness, gossip, pushing us through during bad times and more. They are the ones that do provide us with support at all times but then due to certain situations (taking this pandemic, for example), it gets quite difficult to stay in touch with them or even plan out anything exclusively. No doubt social media can help that, but it’s simple texting and plan sharing with no follow ups unless you remember the plan and execute it. But to make things better, a company provides users with connecting with their friends and organizing multiple things together easily. The company in discussion is none other than JOYN.
JOYN is a budding startup that focuses on providing a unique and revamped way to organize an activity amongst friends. It could be a small walk or trip and plan out extensively with the app. It helps out friends who are introverts and want to get in touch with their existing friends without sounding anything harsh or otherwise. Clearing the boredom that one might have taken upon themselves can be easily availed by the application. Furthermore, the intent is to kickstart a plan and see it turn to reality with your group of friends. Speaking with Ira Leino, Co-founder & CMO of JOYN, Venture Mirror got an insight into the company through a short interview which has been provided below.
What is the startup / product / venture about? Give us a brief description of it.
JOYN keeps your friendships active and helps you to connect easily with your friends.
Connect better with your friends through activities, organize your free time easily and make real memories. The app is designed to help the users share activities with their friends, similar to how you share images via Instagram. The main functionality is based on efficiently connecting and doing more with friends through activities; anything from just going for a walk to a road trip is possible. We are helping the users connect with their friends in the JOYN app and then allow them to share any type of short or long plan with their friends.
Our vision is a world without boredom and loneliness but with friends closer than ever.
How many co-founders are there? Please introduce them and their backgrounds.
We are three in the team. All of us are former international students, lived in several countries, and currently residing in Copenhagen.
Max Glocke, CEO, worked in IT operations prior to beginning the startup journey. He holds a Master’s in Economics (Finance).
Jakub Schovanec, CTO, is an experienced full-stack mobile and web app developer. He recently graduated as Bachelor in Business Economics and IT.
Ira Leino, CMO, worked in quality management and communications. She studied and recently became a Master in Tourism and Market Communication.
How did you come up with the idea? What motivated you to do this?
While working on our previous product, we interviewed numerous people, and a common problem of not doing enough with their friends came up. The problems leading to this were laziness or hesitation to reach out, no time to reach out and plan, not knowing what friends are doing. There are also extremely introverted people who want to join activities and become better friends with their current friends, but have a hard time doing so.
Without friends and experiences, one doesn’t feel like belonging, and isolation, loneliness and boredom just get more serious. These are even more relevant problems considering the current situation, many feel detached from their friends during COVID.
We have received lots of supportive feedback on our app, and we believe that a social network for sharing activities is the right solution to solve the above-mentioned problems.
Who is your target market? Why do you think your product will appeal to them?
Our market is primarily students and young professionals up to age 35, who are active social media users and want to do more with their friends. We target especially international students and professionals working abroad, because for them, true friendships can make them feel like belonging in the home away from home, as their family is far away. Of course, we welcome locals to join as well, who wouldn’t want to form meaningful friendships and have true experiences!
The JOYN app is free and available worldwide, which allows anyone to use it.
Who are your competitors? How are you different from them?
Most of the competition out there is for apps where you can meet new people. We are mainly focused on activating friendships and doing things with current friends. Our only direct competition is just texting friends. However, this is where the problem from the beginning comes in; lack of time, not knowing what the friends are doing, and laziness or hesitation to text friends and plan activities.
What are the future plans with the product/startup? Any new features you are planning on?
We are launching the first version of the app in May 2021. But it is already possible to reserve a unique username and sign up for early access on our website https://thejoynapp.com/
Right after launching the minimum viable product, we will keep adding more features and continuously improve it, so the users can, of course, get the most out of it. To mention a few super exciting upcoming improvements, we will introduce groups in the app and a marketplace for activities and experiences. Go sign up and stay tuned 🙂