Hunters are disappearing. According to the National Survey of Hunting, Fishing, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, the number of hunters in the U.S. has decreased by 2.2. million from 2011 to 2016. Joe Rogan, a recent graduate from Binghamton Accelerator Program and a longtime hunter, set out to address the evolving landscape by integrating modern technology into this historic pastime. Rogan’s app, Hunt’n Buddy, makes hunting social, educational, and safer, elevating the hunting experience for seasoned hunters while promoting the hunting culture to the coming generation.
Hunt’n Buddy’s roots can be traced back to the woods. Rogan was hunting with friends who had never been hunting before. Rogan was explaining to them the many precautions and best practices when his friends suggested these tips be compiled for easy reference. This sparked Rogan’s imagination. Rogan researched apps on the market and discovered none with a robust mix of features. “I wanted to create something that has more social aspects to it … something that can unite hunters and make new hunters comfortable” said Rogan.
Hunt’n Buddy was created in response and has gone on to become one of a kind in the market. Rogan and his friends teamed up, pitched the idea to the external development team, and launched the app in 2018. Within a year, Hunt’n Buddy was downloaded by 20,000 users. Rogan has identified key partners, including a national hunting TV shows.
While other apps primarily focus on mapping data, Hunt’n Buddy goes beyond. First, it has an in-app text message function, allowing users to chat and create groups without closing the app. Users can also register emergency contacts to whom the app sends hunters’ locations periodically. Hunt’n Buddy brings in safety and bonding to hunting.
Despite the growing success, Rogan remembered he was thinking too technical and struggled to put himself in the customers’ shoes. The Binghamton Accelerator Program helped Rogan to address these concerns. “The Accelerator Program was one of the most resourceful things that I’ve ever done in my career,” said he. Having worked in a public sector, Rogan has never experienced or studied business. The program’s courses and mentoring have helped him to gain a holistic understanding of business and to identify avenues to scale. Rogan completed the program with new views and goals.
“I’d like to see the app be the hands of new hunters, the younger generations, and social platforms for the hunting community,” said Rogan. Having made a track record of success and gained new skills from the Accelerator Program, Rogan shared his excitement to keep bringing new changes into the hunting culture.