Dangler Case Study
Building a trustworthy brand through secure messaging for Dangler
Dangler is a social media marketplace app that provides a platform for the everyday angler (more serious fisherman), alongside retailers and manufacturers to buy and sell their second hand and new fishing tackle. Dangler will provide a social platform that includes lower costs, buying and selling protection and the opportunity to build a social profile and communicate with other fellow anglers. Dangler’s aim is to create an innovative community that enables anglers to share their passion for buying and selling fishing tackle. Dangler is founded by three brothers, who are dedicated to revolutionizing the way that anglers buy and sell their fishing tackle, by creating an online marketplace in every angler’s pocket.
"We always knew messaging was integral for our platform… but we didn’t realize how important it was until we saw the results."
COO of Dangler
When the Hughes brothers started Dangler, it was their first experience launching a startup. They performed extensive market research and developed a thorough business plan before seeking funding. After raising capital, they planned to officially launch their social marketplace in July 2020.
Before they launched, though, they needed a messaging solution. Fishing is a hobby that people take great pride in. As a result, anglers want the best equipment to help them fish. These tools can be expensive, and fishermen rightly want to make sure they’re buying the right stuff. “Anglers want to ensure that they are buying the item they want and that it matches their expectations, so we knew that buyers needed messaging functionality to quickly ask questions about a product before making a purchase to ensure an effective user experience” says Harry Hughes.
Beyond that, anglers don’t generally browse products. They usually know exactly what they’re looking for. This should make shopping easier. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case in a secondhand market.
Anglers tend to modify their gear or need very specific requirements, which makes a conversation before the sale really important. Buyers and sellers need the option to communicate about the product and ensure that all equipment is legitimate before closing the deal. Building trust is a big component of the sales process.
As a result, secure, reliable messaging and real-time chat wasn’t optional for Dangler. It was a necessity. From the beginning, Dangler knew their platform needed to have an in-app, sophisticated messaging solution like Facebook messenger. While many other competitors on the market had opted for forums, Dangler wanted to provide its users with easy to use messaging.
They also needed the chat to be branded and seamlessly integrated with their platform. It needed to be fully functional the moment Dangler launched. They knew from the start that the entire business really hinged on users’ ability to effortlessly communicate and buy and sell.
Originally, they planned to build the messaging app in-house, but the founders quickly realized that using a chat API would be much more efficient. After assessing their needs and sifting through several companies, Dangler decided Sendbird was the chat API for them.
Dangler partnered with Sendbird to bring sophisticated chat capabilities to their platform in a matter of months. The company needed an easy-to-use messaging API that was secure, customizable, and modern and would enable them to disrupt and change an entire industry.
Dangler wanted to create a marketplace that offered secure transactions and moderated communications — a platform their users could trust. They wanted to be able to provide a safe forum for their users to connect; they wanted to be able to flag abuse, and filter out inappropriate images and words. As well, they wanted to ensure user transactions through their platform remained secure. A huge part of running a thriving marketplace relies on maintaining a safe space for shoppers and a brand reputation built around trust. For this reason, strong messaging security and advanced moderation features were among the top reasons Dangler chose Sendbird.
Additionally, Dangler needed a messaging solution that could scale and adapt as they grew. They wanted a partner who would be invested in their partnership over the long term and that offered all the add-on features they needed out-of-the-box.
While they’re a UK-based company launching with individual users at the center, they plan to go global and eventually also expand their work with retailers and manufacturers. With this future vision in mind, they needed a messaging platform capable of handling that growth, and one that had a modern, mobile- first approach.
Dangler is also uncompromising about providing a stellar user experience, and they needed their messaging solution to have basic chat fundamentals, like read receipts, notifications, image and video sharing.
During implementation, Sendbird collaborated with Dangler to ensure the messaging experience would make buying, selling, and interacting a stress-free and safe experience for anglers. Unlike the unorganized fisherman forums of the past, Dangler wanted to provide a place for anglers to buy, sell, and socialize in a safe and organized environment.
Integrating chat was always part of the plan. Still, Dangler was surprised to see how important it was to their users. After launch, they learned that when the average user opens a new account, the very first thing they do is launch a chat session — not purchase. As they had expected, users needed that chat function. In fact, Dangler has discovered that people aren’t buying until after they’ve already had a conversation. As the company continues to roll out and expand, Dangler is expecting user messaging to be a key component of its growth.
The Hughes brothers’ goal is to become more than a marketplace: they strive to become a community centered around an incredibly specific and overlooked demographic. With Dangler’s launch of their mobile app and scale, chat continues to be a crucial and fundamental layer to their business.
“Without chat,” says CFO Kane Hughes, “Dangler couldn’t exist. It’s a fundamental part of our business model, and we’re excited to see how Sendbird’s chat API helps us scale as we grow.”