Playful Project Turned Full-Fledged Pursuit
An Interview with
What is Village?
Village is a safe and fun social messaging app for families. We provide an app kids love and parents trust. We have unique messaging features that are fun to use. Plus we offer built in monitoring and controls for parents that keeps kids safe and evolves as they mature.
Why did you start Village?
We started Village to protect kids from the mental health crisis being caused by social media that has resulted in an alarming 30+% increase in teen depression and suicide. As a father of 4 kids, I have struggled with these challenges in my family. One of several personal stories is that my oldest daughter fell into a 6 month funk, and even visiting a therapist didn’t help. Within 2 weeks of deleting SnapChat, she was sleeping well, happy and back to her normal self.
Social apps today are not appropriate for kids under 16 (or possible even 18). Risks include: cyberbullying, sexual predators, fakeness with unrealistic expectations, and explicit sexual content. I have tried every solution in the market today, and none of them provided the right balance of giving my kids responsibility with flexible oversight and protection. Village is what families need to teach kids digital responsibility while allowing them to enjoy their childhood.
How does a great domain make a great brand?
Village is a family-focused app and our brand is our public representation of our family values. Before acquiring rights to Village.com, we were searching for a name that conveyed a sense of community, belonging, and quality of life. We feel Village is the perfect image to convey what we are creating. As a startup, getting early access to a premium domain such as Village.com while on a bootstrap budget makes a huge difference to our business.
A great domain is memorable to customers and investors alike. When I tell people about our business and to check us out online, the usual response is "how did you get village.com" with a tone of amazement!
How did Venture help?
Venture is the only domain platform that I’ve worked with that was able to create a win-win partnership. They have followed through on their commitments and been great to work with.
What branding advice would you give to other startups?
As a founder, establishing your company’s brand is similar to creating your culture: they are both critical to success and you only get to do it once. Branding is a key ingredient to get right. Village relies on word-of-mouth and virality to grow our user base.
Can you image if thousand, or tens of thousands, or (hopefully) millions of users had to spend 5 seconds spelling our domain name, because we settled for some generally available domain? I can’t. That’s why working with Venture to get an amazing domain has been a critical first step to getting our brand on the right track. Village.com is a memorable name that is easy to spread.