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The social event organiser app that wants to puts the social back into socialising

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by Startacus Admin

Social event organiser app Loose Ends aims to be a new social networking type app with a real difference: it wants to enable its users to socialise - and in real life too...

Loose Ends

According to Loose Ends, making the first move when it comes to organising a friendly get together can be a little bit daunting these days. LSE graduate, Daniel Lewis, first conceived the Loose Ends concept back in 2008 when after many busy days in the city, he found himself kicking his heels. With everyone working and beginning family lives, meeting up with mates was proving difficult and the usual trip to the local was becoming tedious. He wanted a way to find out who was available and when, without making endless phone calls… Or sounding desperate!

Fast forward to 2017, and with the Loose Ends app now available on both android and iOS devices, we chatted to Daniel to find out all about Loose Ends…

Loose Ends

Hi there Daniel, in a world where social media and social networking apps are constantly being developed, what do you think sets Loose Ends apart from the rest of the market? 

I like to think that Loose Ends puts the Social back in Social Media and that’s what sets us apart. Other apps that bring people together often do so only online, in some Loose Ends Founderways isolating us rather than bringing us closer together. Loose Ends makes it easy for people to meet face to face, getting together to enjoy various activities instead of just chatting online. It’s a way we can stop being slaves to our phones and make them work for us instead! 

Users can set up a Loose Ends account using their Facebook profile, so the app already knows who your friends are. Users can then either list times that they are free (known as a 'Loose End') for their friends to see their availability, or view their friends’ ‘Loose Ends’, and arrange get-togethers from there. Our app even suggests local activities you can attend once you’ve arranged a time to meet – the ability to choose from a selection of restaurants, bars, coffee shops, clubs and more adventurous venues makes it easy to plan your time.

Which came first - the desire to create an app per se or the need to create this particular app?

The desire to build an app came first, but it was a pretty close run thing! I was out with a friend some while back, discussing the growing popularity of mobile apps and talking about how I'd like to get into them - not that I had much of an idea what it'd entail - and the idea for Loose Ends actually came that evening. I realised how little I saw my own friends and from there Loose Ends was born: an app that enables you to socialise! 

Loose EndsWhat have been some of your biggest challenges in reaching this stage with the app? 

The hardest thing to was finding the right people to help me build Loose Ends. I might know my way around a spreadsheet but building an app is a whole other proposition. After a few false starts - and discovering that you really do get what you pay for - I found a small development house that was able to bring the app to life.

Working with them to build something that stands out from the crowd was the next challenge, and we went through a number of design changes to make something people would find useful and intuitive to use.

The next challenge is to move from production to marketing - a whole new skill set - to get Loose Ends in front of users then move the app in the direction they want it to go. 

Is your app aimed at a particular age group? 

I have a number of typical users in mind. In fact, the only people I don't really see using it would be people under, say, 25. Thinking back to my uni experience, it was easy just to wander into the student union and see someone to hang out with. As you get older you don't have that luxury. The over 25s are more likely to have families, have moved away from their home town or be snowed under at work and therefore make less time for face to face meet ups with friends. If their friends are in the same boat, then it may be impossible to find corresponding windows in their diaries. Loose End can help with that. 

How will you monetise the app?

What an excellent question! If Loose Ends works as I envision it then we will have the attention of users just as they are working out exactly where they are planning to go. If we help facilitate the booking we'd expect to take some fee for that, whether it is a restaurant reservation or buying cinema tickets. There is also scope to promote venues through our Inspire section. I'm also looking into partnering with venues to bring offers to Loose Ends users - who wouldn't want a discount on their pint? 

Loose EndsWhat’s next for Loose Ends?

Getting the app out there, in front of people. I'm planning to attend more events to showcase Loose Ends, to get the download ball rolling but also to find out more about what users want.

I have a ton more development ideas - making restaurant reservations through the app, integrating with offer/discount providers, enabling log in from other social networks - but I am expecting even more once I gather user feedback. One thing we will roll-out shortly, however, is a widget to make it easy for venue owners to direct users to their listing in Loose Ends, making it as easy as possible for users to set up their Loose End and get out there and socialise!

Good luck to Daniel at Loose Ends and feel free to drop the team a tweet to pass on your own best wishes too!

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Published on: 4th May 2017

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