We are the team behind GooseChase! We help businesses, teachers, and any other organizers run custom Scavenger Hunt Adventures through our platform! Ask us anything!

GooseChase Adventures
Jul 9, 2018

Hi everyone! We are the team behind GooseChase Adventures! Ever since we started in 2011, we've been helping clients run engaging app-enabled mobile scavenger hunts for team-building events, conferences, classrooms, college campuses, and even multi-week festivals!

Our platform helps event organizers engage their participants by allowing them to create custom missions (or select from our mission bank of over 100+ pre-made missions) that encourage friendly competition, exploration of new places, application of knowledge, interactions with strangers, and creativity. Some of our more notable clients have included Nike, Google, and Microsoft.

Participants join created games with the GooseChase App downloaded to their mobile device, and complete missions by submitting photo/video evidence, their GPS location, or text-based answers. Game Organizers can monitor submissions coming in through our web-based platform, and can even message participants or award bonus points for creativity!

We are a fully remote team of young professionals with a love for adventure, friendly competition, travel, and all-things outrageous. Check out our video of some highlights from the GooseChase game ran at the Adelaide Fringe Festival this year!

All of us on the team will be keeping an eye on this AMA and do our best to answer any questions you might have on topics including but not limited to: Starting up a business from a university dorm room, developing user-friendly digital products, working as a fully-remote team, building a community on social media, utilizing gamification to create real-world interactions, where we are headed in the future, or who we think will win the World Cup!

We are:

Andrew Cross - Co-Founder, CEO, Product Development

Alyshahn Kara - VP Sales and Marketing

Phil Everson - VP Education

Eric Chiang - Head of Marketing

Rebecca Yaffa - Head of Customer Success

Rebecca Everson - Education Community Coordinator

Logan Fuller - Software Development

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What advice would give entrepreneurs who feel the challenges they are facing is not worth going on with the business?
Jul 16, 11:40AM EDT0
What are you doing to increase your client base? Do you keep track of areas you are yet to gain clients or do you focus where you already have clients?
Jul 16, 11:29AM EDT0
What future plans do you have for goosechase?
Jul 16, 10:37AM EDT0
What would you tell people who are yet to make the decision to use goosechase but are considering it?
Jul 16, 3:51AM EDT0
Are there any classic or current games that changed your creative vision or that stand out to you as must play or watch and why?
Jul 11, 5:39PM EDT0

I didn’t really get into it as a player, but I was absolutely fascinated by the massive crowd gatherings that happened in cities around the world when Pokemon Go was released. I think we’re in a period where the very definition of “Game” is changing in people’s minds. The dominance of console and computer games over the last 30-40 years has led to games being mostly associated with a recreational “escapism”. And I think we’re heading into an era where the most influential games won’t be the ones that are trying to engage players into a virtual fantasy (we’ve gotten too good at that already), but the ones that are able to incentivize positive real-life interaction and "enhance" real world engagements.

-Eric

Last edited @ Jul 13, 4:33PM EDT.
Jul 13, 4:31PM EDT0
Do you have any mentors or people from your past that helped your team inspire and how?
Jul 11, 5:29PM EDT0

In our first couple years, we were based out of the Velocity Garage (a co-working space for University of Waterloo students/alumni) & participated in Start-Up Chile.

For me at least, I’ve found working around other startups incredibly inspiring. Being part of a community, seeing the hustle & grind that goes into things, how other people get their first customers, how they stay alive & upbeat in the face of adversity. Those things are really, really valuable in the early days when it’s easy to get discouraged.

-Andrew

Jul 13, 4:30PM EDT0
Do you have any goals or things that you look for when hiring designers these days?
Jul 11, 4:48PM EDT0

One specific thing I look for is the ability to make an amazing UX with standard components. Since we’re a small team, the difference between using an existing component (especially on iOS or Android) & writing a new one is massive.

Just making a beautiful, useable design isn’t enough - the designer has to factor in our current (and platform specific) design patterns to make sure we have a coherent and programmable design across the board.

- Andrew

Jul 13, 4:29PM EDT0
Do you develop the games or these must be created by the customers?
Jul 9, 8:18PM EDT0

Both! Users can create complete custom missions, or use the ones in our Mission Bank of over 100 pre-built missions that can be added to their games or modified to be semi-custom.

- Eric

Jul 10, 4:33PM EDT0
How often do you make changes and upgrades to your platform? How do you incorporate feedback from your users?
Jul 9, 6:45PM EDT1

We roll out upgrades to the platform on a regular basis. We don’t maintain a “schedule”, but rather do deployments as features, enhancements, and bugs are completed. User feedback is at the root of just about everything we do - we relentlessly track it (shout out to Rebecca Y. who really helps here), regularly review our priorities based on what we’re hearing, and even get early design feedback from actual users. Although we really value the feedback we receive, it’s worth pointing out we sometimes have to make the tough decision to disregard feedback, as occasionally it just doesn’t align with where we see ourselves going as a company.

-Phil

Jul 12, 4:11PM EDT0
What goals do you have aligned for the next year and how do you plan to achieve them?
Jul 9, 11:57AM EDT1

At the beginning of every year, we set key metric targets based on our desired growth & our historical numbers.

From there, we try to build out what we’ll need to make them happen! It’s definitely more of an art than a science, at least for us at this point, but having something to track against is powerful.

-Andrew

Jul 9, 4:46PM EDT0
What benefits have your customers experienced when using Goose Chase?
Jul 9, 7:45AM EDT1

I can’t even type all of the anecdotes I’ve heard over the years! One of my favourite stories, that I hear over and over, is that GooseChase allowed participants to get out of their own way to meet new people and engage with surroundings in ways they didn’t know was possible. I love hearing these stories from conference or festival attendees or employees at a company because that’s exactly what my hope is for how people use our application

- Alyshahn

Jul 9, 4:44PM EDT0
Show all 4 replies
How do you maintain engagement for employees during times of change and difficulty?
Jul 8, 3:32AM EDT1

I think this is a combination/balance of a couple things:

- If things are changing or difficult, we try to be very open/transparent about it. Almost all of the internal changes we make tend to be kicked off with phrases like "this is an experiment, we're going to revisit/review", making it clear that nothing is really ever set in stone, and there's always room for improvement. This helps share the responsibility for the change, which in turn enables everyone to have an impact on it. - If things are difficult, we try and fix them / make them less difficult. We try identify the root problem, and fix it. When this doesn't work, we try to fix it again, hopefully learning from the past fix.

- Maintaining an overall positive culture here really helps keep things in perspective. Even just sharing positive stories from our users with each other or just attempting to teach a geography-challenged co worker the world map, it all contributes to why we come to work everyday.

- We use a service called Bonusly, that allows us to "tip" team members in points that can be redeeded for prizes on the website, so people can really give kudos to each other. We also have a #good-things channel on our slack just as an off-topic place to share positive developments or a #travel channel to share scenery from where everyone is from around the world!

-Phil

Jul 10, 4:27PM EDT0
What skills are most useful for everyone to have when trying to move towards a culture of engagement?
Jul 7, 9:04PM EDT1

“A culture of engagement” is really just company culture. If engagement culture is what you’re trying to build, then it needs to be part of the fibre and values of the company. It needs to be ingrained in your hiring process, your day to day operations and customer service. This inherently will create the culture of engagement you’re looking for.

-Alyshahn

Jul 9, 4:43PM EDT0
What do you feel are the biggest pitfalls that companies should look to avoid when executing their engagement strategy?
Jul 7, 5:40PM EDT1

In terms of GooseChase event engagement, the two things I’ve noticed are:

1) It has to be actually enjoyable for the user, not just a shallow advertising play. Participant enjoyment should take priority over branding.

2) Commitment to the event. One of the more interesting things we’ve noticed is free games for conferences often end up being poor experiences. If someone is willing to invest in the game, they’ll also invest the manpower for things to run smoothly.

-Andrew

Jul 9, 4:42PM EDT0

What are your recommendations for new entrepreneur?

Jul 7, 12:54PM EDT1

From a similar question:

1) Work/dabble/experiment with stuff you find interesting. Humans are really, really bad at identifying what will be big and what’s a good idea. The more things you work on & have experiences with, the better you’ll be able to see how different things could fit together in a cool way.

2) Work with awesome people. Being around talented, driven, but also genuinely solid people is one of the best ways I know to work on cool things and enjoy life.

3) Just start & enjoy the grind. So many people will be naysayers on your idea/what you’re doing. Start, iterate & grind. Even if your original idea doesn’t work, try and find an aspect of it that has potential and explore that. Worst case scenario, you’ll meet interesting people, which isn’t a bad worst case outcome in my opinion.

- Andrew

Jul 9, 4:53PM EDT0
What is the best team-building activity you have ever done?
Jul 6, 6:29PM EDT1

Other than GooseChase? ; P

One of my internships took us to play whirleyball, which if you’ve never heard of it is essentially bumper cars, lacrosse & basketball combined. It ends up being a hilarious combination of excitement and team work since the bumper car aspect made it so you couldn’t go hero mode & really needed to work together.

-Andrew

Last edited @ Jul 9, 4:39PM EDT.
Jul 9, 4:38PM EDT0
Show all 3 replies
What are the must-have mobile apps to use when attending a trade show and events?
Jul 5, 5:00PM EDT1

It’s not a mobile app, but I’d say a fully-juiced external battery is clutch. - Andrew

Jul 9, 12:44PM EDT0

The only mobile apps I've consistently used are:

GooseChase - solely for demo purposes to illustrate how our platform works.

The Conference's Schedule App - as this can be helpful for gaging traffic and discovering ket sessions/keynotes you might want to drop in on.

LinkedIn & Twitter - for being able to hand your phone to people and say "add yourself so we can stay connected".

But personally, I really don't think there should be any "must-have mobile apps" for trade shows / events. For me, going to this type of event is all about connecting with other human beings and forming relationships - being there in person is the most important part!

I actually talk about that with clients all the time regarding GooseChase, in that our platform is all about prompting participants to have an interaction / experience with something outside of our app. For example, "attending a session and listening for an answer in the presentation" or "finding another attendee, who you haven't met before, who's born in the same state/province/region as you".

- Phil

Jul 9, 12:47PM EDT0
In terms of feedback, what response has your app had from clients?
Jul 5, 3:03AM EDT1

Feedback has been very positive! We’ll frequently get emails from people saying how much fun they had, how much people enjoyed it, etc.

Teachers especially seem to be very vocal about it, writing up whole articles explaining how to use it effectively.

We actually have an internal #good-things slack channel just for posting this type of feedback so the whole team can see it!

- Andrew

Jul 9, 12:43PM EDT0
Who do you think will win the World Cup? What team are you rooting for?
Jul 4, 3:27PM EDT1

I just spent a couple weeks in Croatia & watching those games was amazing in person. Count me as all aboard the Croatia train! - Andrew

Jul 6, 4:08PM EDT0

My pool has been absolutely decimated at this point, but hoping England will take it out of who’s remaining! - Eric

Jul 6, 4:09PM EDT0
What would you say are the specific character traits of a successful entrepreneur?
Jul 4, 12:15PM EDT1

The best entrepreneurs:

1. constantly self reflect in order to always be learning, iterating and striving to improve - both personally and in their business

2. Understand that No is a great place to start!

3. Hustle and understand that a great idea is never enough. Hard work is the true backbone of success

- Alyshahn

Jul 6, 4:07PM EDT0

+1 to what Alyshahn said! - Andrew

Last edited @ Jul 6, 4:07PM EDT.
Jul 6, 4:07PM EDT0
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