It was a pleasure attending the 8th Annual Internet Dating Conference in Miami again, where I had the honor to speak on Web Dating 2.0: Using Social Media to Create Brand Loyalty on January 20, 2011.
Several hundred people attended the session on day 2 of the 3-day conference.
In my presentation, I shared the exciting news that both Zoosk Mobile and SpeedDate Mobile apps have each had more than 2 million downloads.? OkCupid’s mobile app has over 1 million mobile users. eHarmony says their mobile apps account for approximately 20% of global site visits. Consumers now look at eHarmony profiles more than 16,000 times per hour while using mobile devices.? Their mobile app was launched in August, 2009 in conjunction with their 10th anniversary. Match says mobile users are twice as engaged as those who log onto the site on their desktop, so we are definitely going mobile.
We learned from Online Personals Watch Publisher Mark Brooks that online dating hit a record high in December 2010 with 116 million members worldwide visiting online dating sites. Over 20 million visits were from U.S. members. The folks from Google shared that 35 hours of video content is uploaded on YouTube every minute of the day. Online dating is a 1.3 billion dollar industry now according to Jupiter Research.
One of the highlights of the conference was the 2nd annual iDate Awards. This year OkCupid won 4 iDate Awards including Best Dating Site, Best Dating Site Design, Most Innovative Company, and Best Up and Coming Dating Site. Congratulations to OkCupid for winning in every category that they were nominated in and matching the number of Golden Globe Awards received as The Social Network film. My friend Julie Ferman won the Best Matchmaker Award for the second year in a row and it was certainly well deserved.
It was terrific spending time with Sherri Langburt from Single Edition, Ravit Abelman from Omnidate,? Julie Ferman from Cupid’s Coach, and eLove’s Paul Falzone while catching up with Sam Yagan from OkCupid and Kate Billenki from Plenty of Fish. All have been featured guests on Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert Radio Show. Dating blogger Simone Grant came to iDate for her first time and we brainstormed about dating, blogging, and social media.
The Final Debate
The conference ended with the Final Panel Debate curated by Marc Lesnick, Conference Organizer and included Mark McMaster from Google, Mark Brooks from Online Personals Watch, Michael McQuown from Thunder Road, Jonathan Crutchley from Manhunt, Mark Harrison from Dating Factory, Joel Simkhal from Grindr, Markus Frind from Plenty of Fish, Sam Yagan from OkCupid, Ty from Elite Global Dating and Dan Winchester from FreeDating.co.uk. At the end of the annual end of conference panel, the majority of the panelists felt that online dating would continue to grow in 2011.
Free Versus Paid
The hot topic this year was Free versus Paid online dating sites. Free sites have been rising in popularity and have made a small dent in the paid online dating services. Compared to the cost of high-end matchmakers, paid online dating sites are still a bargain.
To view my presentation, visit SocialMediaMore.com/idate
Have you ever gone out on a date with someone you believed was single and available only to find out their divorce wasn’t final?
Every week, I hear stories of members of online dating sites claiming to be single, when in fact they either haven’t filed for divorce yet or their divorce isn’t final. Technically and legally, these people are still married. Sure, they may know for sure there’s no chance of reconciliation. ?They also know they’ll have a better chance of meeting someone if their status does not say “Separated” on their online dating profile. Perhaps they will utilize the Facebook relationship status category of “It’s Complicated.” I believe they should state from the onset, “Separated, Divorce Pending.”
Recently I wrote an article about this epidemic on Huffington Post called, “Is Your New Beau Separated, Divorce Pending?” ?This status of “Separated, Divorce Pending” does not exist on any of the online dating sites and I invite and challenge the Internet dating industry that permit separated individuals as members to add this status. Let’s see who jumps in first to add it on their menu. If you have experienced this phenomenon, I’d like to hear from you. Now, onto the original article from Huffington Post.
It?s becoming an epidemic is appears. Profiles of singles on online dating sites with the status of ?Divorced,? when in reality they are ?Separated, Divorce Pending.?
It?s not just happening online. A recent friend of mine was set up on a date with an attorney. During dinner he mentioned his ex-wife in the conversation. When she innocently questioned him about how long he had been divorced, there was a moment or two of silence, followed by, ?Well, I?m, um, well, not really divorced.? He added, ?It?s complicated. A financial matter, but we?re not getting back together.?? A week later another date with a man she met online also admitted over dinner that his divorce was not final. When she asked him, ?Why don?t you state your status as ?Separated?? he replied, ?Because no one will go out with me if I say I?m ?Separated.?
In coaching men and women who are in that in between stage that I call, ?Separated, Divorce Pending,? I tell them to be honest. State you are ?Separated.? If your divorce is almost final, add that into the body of your online dating profile so a potential date or mate will know that there?s truth-in-advertising before responding to your email introduction.
More often than not, someone who is separated might need to have a transition person, that one very important relationship in between his or her marriage or long term relationship which typically runs its course and ends. Not all transition relationships end, but if you start out with honesty, you?ll have a greater chance of success regardless of the length of your relationship.
As one who also experienced the ?Separated, Divorce Pending? phenomenon with a man I met online, I personally know what it feels like to find out that an apparently available and compatible single ended up being ?Separated? instead of ?Divorced.? On our fourth date when it looked like the relationship could go somewhere, I said, ?I have a feeling that the ink is barely dry on your divorce papers.? My date back peddled and said he hadn?t filed yet, even though they were separated for over a year. My heart sank and I wished he had told me the truth from the beginning.
So I encourage those in transition to be authentic in representing your relationship status. And I challenge the online dating sites to create a new category for the relationship status of ?Separated, Divorce Pending.? It sounds better than ?It?s Complicated? and with the large amount of singles in dating in transition; I believe it deserves a category of its own.
Can you relate? We’d like to hear your stories.
Labor Day weekend is almost here.? Starting tonight at midnight, our friends at eHarmony have a special weekend that I highly recommend.
With summer relationships winding down, many singles will be looking for love online. If you’re ready to start dating, here’s my advice on how to make this weekend work the best for you during their 4-day event.
1. You can take advantage of their offer by signing up now and creating your profile so it’s ready to go tonight at midnight. Their in-depth questionnaire is really targeted to those who are looking for serious relationships and marriage.
2. If you need help with your irresistible online dating profile, at Cyber-Dating Expert, we work with singles to make the process easier and more enjoyable.
3. Make sure you carve out the time to get organized and spend several hours a day reviewing the matches that eHarmony sends to you.
4. Respond in a timely manner to those who start the communication process with you.
5. If you’re ready to communicate, jump over to their fast-track where you can send emails to your matches.
I know that eHarmony works. I was with dozens of their success couples in New York during their 10th anniversary celebration earlier this month. Their online dating site is now responsible for over 500 people getting married every day.
Don?t Labor Over Finding Love?Connect on eHarmony FREE 9/3-6! Let us know if you meet that someone special!
Welcome to 2010. For those who have the tradition of making New Year’s resolutions, I have some dating advice to add to your list.
Bah humbug? No, not really. I met several singles over the holidays who dreaded this time of the year and were looking forward to a new beginning. January is the single largest month for new subscriptions to online dating services. When they discussed their frustrations with online dating, I asked why it wasn’t working for them.
The number one reason was FEAR. Yes fear. Fear has caused many singles to lie about their age to fit into a search. This isn’t new. So, when a 59 year old fairly attractive male told me he said he was 55 in his profile and he wasn’t planning on changing that number, I asked him,? “Will you still be 55 when you are 60?”? He had to think about the answer.
Most of us look in the mirror and think we look younger than we are. We see photos on Facebook from high school and college friends and they always look older than we do, or at least we think so.
I continued my discussion with the almost 60-year old man. He was concerned that only older women would write to him. Maybe some will. When I convinced him that he didn’t have to go out with every woman who wrote to him,? especially those that didn’t fit into his search, he eased up for a minute.? When I was positive that he wasn’t going to tell the truth about his age, I asked him how he’d feel if a woman lied about her age and said she was 5-10 years younger. Although it’s a common trend in cyberdating,? he said it’s a turn-off to him.
Finally, I asked him to make a New Year’s resolution to update his profile. He was not going to say he was 59 as fear of turning 60 made him panic.? He did reluctantly agree to adding a “disclaimer” in his profile saying that he was really 59 but looked and felt much younger and wanted to fit into a search.? I asked him to be honest about his age. He said he’d try it. After all, he hadn’t been successful in lying on his online dating profile in the 3 years he has been on multiple Internet dating sites.
It’s a New Year. 2009 was difficult for many with the economic turbulence. The desire for singles to couple-up is at an all time high. Wouldn’t you want someone to be honest with you from the beginning?
Make it your New Year’s resolution to live your life with authenticity –Online, offline, and where ever you may roam.
If you need some help in getting started with your online dating profile, contact us and we’ll help you create that IRRESISTIBLE Profile to help you stand out among the millions of online daters.
Julie Spira is a dating coach and author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Visit her at CyberDatingExpert.com
It’s not just about watching Cougar Town on television this week. On Friday, November 6, 2009 Cougar Women will flock to Beverly Hills for the National Cougar Convention.
The first-ever conference will be held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel and cougars throughout California will be competing for the title of Miss Cougar California.
The Keynote Address will be given by Lucia, The Queen of the Cougar Jungle and host of the radio show, The Art of Love.
Several online dating sites have popped up focusing on Cougar Women and it’s a hot topic now.
To be eligible to win the crown, Cougar women must be over 40 to register and legally be single. Doors open at 7pm, and Miss California Cougar will be crowned at approximately 11:00pm. I’ll be there with my camera in tow, and will post photos on the CyberDatingExpert site.
The cost of the event is $30. Visit CougarEvents.com for more information.
Women complain about the men they meet in online dating sites who only want to have casual flings and hook-up. It appears the tables have turned and now some men aren’t happy about it either.
Read my answer to this question, along with dating advice for the woman with Facebook status woes in DateDaily.
Listen to Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert Radio Show with my guest Eric Resnick, founder of ProfileHelper?and a contributor to Online Personals Watch.?Today’s show was like an encyclopedia for online daters filled with advice and recommendations.
We talked about the latest statistics for those looking for love online, including focusing on the top Internet dating sites, the niche sites, and video chat.
You’ll hear us talk about top sites including Match.com, Plenty of Fish, and Yahoo! Personals, as well as religious sites such as Christian Cafe and JDate, to the niche sites including Date My Pet and Geek to Geek.?
If you are interested in starting your very own online dating site, learn how easy it is to do from our conversation today.