Online dating doesn’t mean just signing up for a dating site when you’re single any more. It’s a multi-billion dollar industry filled with mobile apps, dating coaches, and helps both singles find love and couples stay together with ongoing dating tips.
In a pre-Valentine’s Love Goes Digital panel hosted by Kevin Winston of Digital LA, online dating experts and sites discussed dating advice, the growing trend of mobile dating, and how to keep your love alive after the knot has been tied.
Grant Langston, head of social media at eHarmony and an employee of the site since before it’s launch in 2000 shared his experience on the changes their site has gone through. In my personal opinion, I think they have one of the best iPad apps around. The site will shortly be rolling out a new feature for your eHarmony timeline that’s similar to a Facebook time-line.
Justin Fredericks, founder of Marriage.com, a video network that curates, produces and promotes videos about wedding, marriage, dating, and relationships talked about the new social networking site Pinterest, as it focuses on women.
I shared with the audience how I created my first online dating profile in 1994 as a charter member of Love@Aol, during the days of the dial-up connection. I penned my stories in my first book, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online and created CyberDatingExpert.com as a place for singles and couples to share their online dating stories. The use of social media on Twitter and Facebook has made a big impact on my brand. I also told singles not to ‘friend’ someone on Facebook before or after a first date. Personally, I think it’s creepy.
The audience was a mixed group of singles, married couples, dating industry executives, love coaches and those who are still looking for love online. We nibbled on chocolate, sipped One Coconut Water, and discussed what you should say or not say in your online dating profile.
At the end of the digital day, most of the audience felt they’d rather keep their love and dating life off of Facebook.
One thing’s for sure. The audience left fully armed with the dos and don’ts of social and online dating in time for Valentine’s Day.
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and founder of CyberDatingExpert.com. She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. Follow her @JulieSpira on Twitter. If you loved this post, Like us at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert for more dating advice.
Just in time for Valentine’s, Harlequin publishing has released their 2012 Romance Report card with the resulting grade of, “It’s Complicated.”
Marrying both love and technology has both helped speed up relationships and connect through “Missed Connections,” as well as resulted in hurting someone’s digital feelings. I experienced this first-hand, as my ex-fiancé dumped me in an email during the time when a post-it was passé and Facebook was still an infant. Although it’s very old news in my digital book, I’m hoping that others will think twice before they push the send button or consider having their mobile phones rank higher on the totem pole than their sweetheart this Valentine’s Day.
The romance publisher looked at how Twitter, Facebook, Smartphone and technology has changed the way that men and women communicate with one another in matters of the heart. By polling single women 18-40, they found that the majority (58%) thought technology was a positive force in the dating world. Those who skewed younger (21-24 year olds) preferred texting to calling.
Although 91% of those surveyed said that dating rules had become more flexible, their findings showed that more than half of the women still had traditional values as it relates to romance. Women still want men to as them out, hold the door open for them, and pay for the first date. 82% of those surveyed said they preferred dating a guy with a sense of humor. With, or without technology, not much has changed in these areas.
However, Harlequin added in some dating “deal-breakers,” and they found that three out of five were technology-related. Having a too-needy guy was on the top of the list (32%), followed closely behind with a dependence on a BlackBerry or iPhone (31%), too many Facebook photos with an ex-girlfriend (29%), and those who were grammatically challenged (24%). Oh how simple it really is to untag an ex when you breakup and use spell-check during the digital courtship process. If men knew how easy it was to fix these little things, perhaps more relationships would flourish.
As for those deal-breakers, relationship expert Dr. Wendy Walsh says, “Men who are addicted to their smart phones may be too disconnected from real world relationships or may have a tech-induced attention-deficit-disorder that could impair kindness and intelligence.” Walsh added, “Men who display too many photos of themselves with their ex’s on Facebook may be showcasing their prior conquests to indicate that they are a player and out for sex rather than love.”
So what do women think is romantic? It’s not the price tag of a gift as much as remembering the small details and showing that you care. At the end of the digital day, romance is alive and well and all you really need is love.
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and founder of Cyber-Dating Expert. She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene and writes about the marriage of love and technology on Huffington Post. Julie is the author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating and The Rules of Netiquette. Follow her @JulieSpira on Twitter and at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert
How digital is your love life? Come to the Digital LA – Love Goes Digital panel on February 13, 2012, where we’ll be talking about online and social dating.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 31, 2012 — Los Angeles, CA — Julie Spira, bestselling author of “The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online” and a frequent media guest on the subject of online and social dating will be a featured panelist on the first-ever “Love Goes Digital” panel, hosted by Digital LA on February 13, 2012.
Julie will discuss social dating trends, how she helps singles by creating their online dating profiles, and about how she successfully used social media strategies to help her online dating book become a bestseller.
“For our pre-Valentine’s Day Digital LA – Loves Goes Digital panel, we want to celebrate by getting LA’s experts in online dating and love together, to share tips, trends, and success stories in building dating/love related blogs and businesses,” said Kevin Winston, Digital LA founder. “It’s the first time we know of that local dating and love experts have been gathered on a panel in Los Angeles.”
The event will be held at Hotel Shangri-La in Santa Monica, CA
Tickets can be purchased at digitallalove.eventbrite.com
Our friends at OkCupid have announced OkCupid Locals, a mobile dating app on iOS and Android to help you meet compatible singles more quickly than ever.
With OkCupid locals, you’ll find a blend of a Twitter-like broadcast feature, FourSquare location based feature, and data from the online dating site’s 8-million members.
From connecting at a sports bar to meeting up at a happy hour, simply broadcast your dating intentions and the digital genie will grant your wish with a list of compatible matches closeby.
A service like this will help avoid the weeks and weeks of emailing back-and-forth that many online dating site members feel frustrated with.
There’s no reason to stay dateless in your city anymore.
Are using mobile dating applications or location-based services to meet other singles? Comments and thoughts are always welcome and if you get a moment, follow me @JulieSpira on Twitter and like us at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and bestselling author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Visit her at CyberDatingExpert.com for dating advice and to learn how to create an irresistible online dating profile.
You may have a high IQ and a smile that makes guys hearts melt, but what happens when your attachment to your mobile phone ranks higher on the totem pole than your date? As July marks National Cell Phone Courtesy Month, it’s time to pause and take notice on how discourteous we’ve become as we continue to spend the majority of our time attached to our smart phones.
According to the International Telecommunications Union, there are an estimated 5.3 billion mobile subscribers worldwide and the number is growing. In addition, 6.1 trillion SMS messages were sent in 2010. It’s no wonder with these numbers that cell phone etiquette, or in reality netiquette is on the decline.
So how does this enormous mobile phone usage affect matters of the heart?
In a recent survey on the relationship between cell phones and dating, social dating community Zoosk found out their members were extremely frustrated as they constantly competed with cell phones on a date. In short, daters are regularly breaking the rules of netiquette in a variety of ways with glancing at their cell phones during a date leading the list.
Alex Mehr, co-founder and co-CEO of Zoosk said, ”We are surprised to hear that flagrantly reckless cell phone behavior has driven one third of singles to actually get up and excuse themselves from a date altogether. It’s our hope that singles follow proper cell phone etiquette to ensure that a mobile faux pas doesn’t ‘cell’ their date short.”
I’m personally not surprised in the least by their findings, as I’ve gone on record as saying, “Your mobile phone isn’t an accessory.” I believe that unless you’re expecting a call from the President of the United States or a kidney transplant, your should leave it in your purse or pocket while on a date.
So without further digital adieu, here are some of the results of Zoosk survey.
- 1/3 of singles say they left a date early, because the other person was too absorbed with their cell phone
- 86% of singles say, constantly glancing at a cell phone is the most offensive mobile-related behavior, worse than sending a text
- 51% of singles think taking a call on a date is offensive
- 25% of female Zooskers have dumped their guy in a text message, as compared to 15% of the men
- Only 25% of singles didn’t mind when their date was distracted by their cell phone
- 73% of singles do like hearing their date’s voice on their voicemail
At the end of the digital day, leave a voicemail message for your sweetheart and make sure they remain higher on the totem pole than your mobile device.
Do you have any mobile dating pet peeves? Comments and thoughts are welcome
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and coach and creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. She’s the author of the bestseller, The Perils of Cyber-Dating. Visit her at CyberDatingExpert.com, like her at facebook.com/cyberdatingexpert and follow her on twitter @JulieSpira
According to Internet Dating Conference organizer Marc Lesnick, the industry is happy. Over 250 online dating executives attended the 8th annual iDate show at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills, where the subject was focused on mobile dating.
I had the opportunity to interview Robinne Burrell, Director of Mobile Products at Match.com; Mark Brooks, editor of Online Personals Watch; Monica Ohara, Director of Marketing for SpeedDate, and Joel Simkhai, founder of Grindr about their mobile dating services.
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and bestselling author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Visit her at CyberDatingExpert.com and facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert
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
Next week will be an exciting time for online dating industry professionals. Many of us will gather in South Beach in Miami on January 19th – 21st for the 8th annual Internet Dating Conference, known to many simply as iDate.
Once again I have been selected to speak about Dating 2.0: How to Create Brand Loyalty on the Web on January 20th at 3:30pm at the Miami Convention Center. I’ll be talking about the marriage of love and technology and how to develop your brand through the use of social media marketing. It’s an honor to be among the leading Internet industry executives and matchmakers including Mark Brooks, Publisher of Online Personals Watch; Julie Ferman, Founder of Cupid’s Coach; Paul Falzone from eLove; Markus Frind, founder of Plenty of Fish; and Joel Simkhai from Grindr.
One of the hot topics led by Conference Organizer Marc Lesnick will be the session on free online dating sites and what they mean to the industry. Marc’s presentation will be held on January 21st at 2:00pm.
The Internet Dating Conference will be held concurrently with the Social Networking Conference where Mark Brooks will be presenting the 2010 Year in Review at both conferences. The topics of mobile dating and location based services will be of great interest to many of the attendees.
I’ll be on site with video updates and live tweeting from both conferences. For more information, visit internetdatingconference.com.
We’d love to hear your comments and feedback. Are you currently a member of an online dating site? Do you use mobile dating applications? Do you think Facebook dating will become more popular?
Julie Spira is an online dating expert and author of the bestseller, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Visit her at CyberDatingExpert.com. Follow Julie on Twitter @Julie Spira and like her at facebook.com/cyberdatingexpert
Join Julie Spira on October 16, 2010 for a very special edition of Ask the Cyberdating Expert Radio Show broadcasting live from BlogWorld in Las Vegas.
This week’s guest is Dan Abelon, co-founder and president of SpeedDate.com.
Dan will share insight on mobile-based online dating which is fast becoming the preferred way to meet other singles. He will discuss the subtle nuances between traditional and mobile-based dating and offer tips on boosting your chance of meeting that special someone using your smartphone or iPad.
With over 10 million users, SpeedDate is the world’s first and largest real-time dating website. Its patented system allows singles to meet each other through three minute dates from the comfort of home using instant chat and video. SpeedDate.com allows singles to immediately determine if they have chemistry before taking time to meet in person.
In addition, Speed Date will give away one 6-month Premium membership to their to a Cyber-Dating Expert Facebook member at the end of the program. To be eligible to win, visit us on Facebook at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert and make sure to “Like” our page.
Call in at 646-929-0012 at 2pm/ET, 11am/PT to learn more about dating, love and romance in a Web 2.0 World.
Just in time for Social Media Week we are proud to present our Top Ten favorite mobile dating applications at CyberDatingExpert.com
The year 2010 will go down in history for mobile dating becoming mainstream with many of the traditional online dating sites launching their apps. A Juniper research study estimates that mobile dating will be a 1.4 billion dollar industry by 2014. According to a Ground Truth report, the number of visitors to mobile dating sites increased this past summer by 92 percent from the first week in June to the last week in July. Here’s our list of some of the best mobile dating apps worth downloading.
1. Meet Moi - Meet Moi is a location-based mobile dating company which was formed in 2007. In August of 2010, they launched Meet Moi Now, their Android mobile app and became the first matchmaking service to integrate with Facebook. You can sign up for their basic service for free to create your profile, browse profiles, send winks, respond to received messages, and receive unlimited SMS alerts. They update your location in real-time. When a match is nearby, you get an alert on your phone.
2. Match Mobile - Match.com, who celebrated their 15th anniversary this year, launched Match Mobile in 2007. They added their iPhone app in 2009, and their mobile dating service is now also available on the Android, Blackberry and Palm platforms. Users can download Match.com apps to access the Match.com service. Match claims that close to 10% of their users access their site solely from a mobile device. Their mobile users are twice as engaged versus those who use Match on their desktop computers. Members can browse singles, send winks, and upload photos directly from their mobile phone to their profile. A subscription is required to send and receive emails.
3. Speed Date - SpeedDate.com launched their mobile app this year and has over 1.5 million unique iPhone installs. Over half of them join their service after their installation. Singles can finger-swipe through millions of profiles, choose who they would like to meet and then start conversations via email. Advanced filters allow users to narrow searches based on various criteria such as age and location. In addition, a unique tagging feature ensures all favorite member profiles are stored and easily accessible.
4. Zoosk - Zoosk’s iPhone dating application is the largest dating app in the U.S. It’s also popular in other countries such as Australia, France, Italy and Spain. Users are awarded coins when they download the iPhone app. Their service allows you to chat and flirt wherever you go and you’ll receive a mobile alert when someone flirts with you. Zoosk won the award for the best Mobile Dating Site at the Internet Dating Conference this year and has consistently been a #1 dating app in the iPhone Store with over 1 million downloads. All of the functionalities from their website are available on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Their GPS location tagging capabilities are a feature you’ll want to try out. They will be launching an Android app in the near future.
5. SKOUT - I’ve been following Skout since they laaunched the first-ever dating app for the iPhone in 2008. In July, 2010, they hit one million users. They have one of the most popular iPhone apps and operate like a flirting and hook-up GPS. Their iPhone app identifies singles in your immediate vicinity and gives you the opportunity to flirt and meet up with them. Though the app is free to use, members have the option of purchasing virtual gifts, premium memberships, or sending “wink bombs” which reach up to 500 potential sweethearts in your area at once.
6. eHarmony – Just in time for their 10th anniversary celebration, eHarmony recently launched their iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch service this summer. The app was listed in the Top Ten Free Apps in the App Store and they’ve had over 100,000 downloads. Members can view matches, receive match updates, upload photos from their iPhone, and communicate with their matches.
7. Are You Interested – AreYouInterested.com from Snap Interactive is an online dating site, mobile dating application, and Facebook app for single men and women with over 13 million members. Their service integrates their iPhone and Facebook applications together so you can browse photos of singles in your area and click on who you like. Their buzz feed shows you what people are up to in real time.
8. Grindr – Just this week, Grindr, the world’s largest all-male mobile location-based networking service, announced that it has reached more than one million subscribers. On a daily basis, Grindr has about 250,000 active users who log on approximately eight times per day. The average Grindr user spends an average of 1.3 hours each day using the app. These numbers are huge. On a weekly basis, they have about 400,000 users. This amounts to about 600,000 users per month. Grindr is available on the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. They have plans to expand their service on the Blackberry in the near future.
9. Flirtomatic – Mobile social network Flirtomatic is known as the world’s number one flirting company. Based in the UK, they have over 3 million global members. The good news for U.S. mobile daters, is their membership in the states recently surpassed 1 million users. You can set up your profile in about 20 seconds. Their service allows members to search, chat, send rapid messages, rate members and find user generated content about flirting and dating. Flirtomatic has its own virtual currency called “Flirt Points” that members can use to buy premium services, such as virtual goods. Their service is available on the iPhone and Android platforms.
10. Four Square – I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention location based social networking site Four Square. They aren’t a dating app, but we love them anyway and it’s surely fun to check in. You’ll need to be friends with other members on the service to see who’s around when you check in. If you’ve had a crush for a while on someone and you see they’re at the local coffee shop or at the same venue, you can use this as a chance to say hello and get to them better in real life. Available on the iPhone, Android, Blackberry, and Palm.
JDate Mobile - Launched this year, JDate Mobile allows their members to receive real-time mobile alerts notifying them when they receive new messages, when another member views their profile, adds them to their hot list and more for free. JDate Mobile features are 100% available for free to their subscribers. Available on the iPhone and Android. Non-paying members of JDate can download the app for free, but have limited access to JDate Mobile.
Christian Cafe - With over 400 new sign ups daily, Christian Cafe is now available for iPhone users. Their iPhone mobile dating app is fully integrated with their website and singles can sign up for a free trial, create a basic dating profile, search, see who is online in your area and communicate via email and winks. They are presently in development with their Android app.
Do you have a favorite mobile dating app that you’d like to share with us? We’d like to hear from you.
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