PRESS RELEASE - Mar 10 - Redwood Empire Stereocasters (RES), a leading US radio network, launched SonomaCountyDating.com on WhiteLabelDating.com's platform. 10% of the network’s listeners have already signed up to SonomaCountyDating.com since the launch in December. RES is using the dating site as a channel to generate additional revenue for their network of four radio stations, KJZY, KZST, KWVF, KTRY.
OPW - Jan 3 - Here are the Courtland Brooks rankings of the top 10 and the worst 4 performing idating sites for PR in 2013. We used Meltwater News and our qualitative analysis.
PRESS RELEASE - Dec 6 - UK Global Personals has been chosen for the goverment's Future Fifty fast-track programme. The program aims to connect high-growth companies with experts to help them scale rapidly. The selected companies will receive support from both public and private sectors.
ITV - Oct 30 - In the last night ITV tonight show - Looking For Love, Jonathan Maitland investigated the shift in attitudes towards Internet dating and its effect on relationships. There are 9M online daters in UK. 1 in 5 relationships now start online and ~23% of recently married UK couples met on the Internet. The online dating clearly works but there are some downsides such as scammers. Jonathan interviewed Sonia Richards who was a victim of “romance dating fraud” and sent ~12K pounds to a Nigerian scammer. He talked to Ryan Pitcher, a former GlobalPersonals.co.uk's employee about his job to send fake messages of love to help boost company profits. Jonathan also attended the last iDate conference in Cologne and asked Mark Brooks whether singles are spoiled for choice because of online dating. You can watch the show here.
PRESS RELEASE - Aug 29 - IDE Group chose WhiteLabelDating.com to migrate TheDatingStudio.com's white label sites and member database. WLD is also offering all their previous partners a 100% revenue share for six months when they launch a new site on the company’s platform.
This post also appears on InternetDatingAffiliates.
WLD - Apr 30 - Psychotherapists The Speakmans launched dating site, ‘SpeakmanDating.com’, on WhiteLabelDating.com platform. Nik and Eva Speakman have cured a range of celebrities including Holly Willoughby, Liz McClarnon, Kerry Katona and Kym Marsh, also releasing a number of best-selling self-help DVDs and books to help conquer fears, addiction and confidence issues. SpeakmanDating.com includes tips and advice from the husband and wife duo.
XBIZ - Mar 29 - WhiteLabelDating.com has announced market growth across the U.K., South Africa and Australia alongside strategies to fully expand into the U.S. in 2013. Revenue from new memberships in UK has increased by 101% in the past year, 89% across the South African network and 250% in Australia.
PRESS RELEASE - Mar 22 - WhiteLabelDating.com has launched their 10,000th site on the platform, shortly after welcoming their 20 millionth member on Valentine’s Day. Launched in 2003, WhiteLabelDating.com offers a platform for brands and individuals to power their own dating sites that currently includes The Independent, Evening Standard, Bauer Media and Dennis Publishing as partners.
WLD - Jan 3 - With smartphones and tablets topping most-wanted gift lists this Christmas, the surge in new handheld devices also had a knock-on effect with users signing up to dating sites through their new gifts. WhiteLabelDating.com saw revenue from mobile increased by 928%, making up 15% of all revenue generated during the last week of December (24.12. - 30.12.).
OPW - Nov 9 - The Australian Internet Dating Conference, covering the Asia Pacific just finished up. Here's a few things I learned.
- There are 1.1 million monthly idaters in Australia.
- Oasis and RSVP and POF are the idating leaders.
- 5% of the 2100 scam victims reported to ACCC lost $100k+ last year.
- Operators say scammer safety warnings don't deter users.
- The iPad is the 'happy' device, used for entertainment and non-work apps.
- Consider using YouTube TrueView, Homepage and First Watch ads.
- Use Google Adwords Social Extensions and you'll see 5-10% CTR uplift.
- Use 'Ripples' on Google+ to Identify influencers.
- Use piktochart.com for quickly developing infographics.
- When planning content, use Google Trends and Linkedin Today to see what's making news.
- Use Spezify.com to identify content partners and search multiple media platforms and Hittail.com for getting content.
- For Influencer marketing: Traackr, Klout, Marketing Cloud, Twitalyzer, Followerwonk.
- Mobile ad returns are disappointing for Oasis.
- They get a lot better return on their msite than their app.
- 10-15% of Oasis ad revenues come from advertising other idating sites.
- Oasis is launching freemium products next month.
- White Label Dating has $7.5 million revenues (run-rate) in the Australia.
- Japan has 4.5 million idaters.
- The leading dating sites in Japan has billboards on trucks.
- There are 180 million bachelors in China.
- The Chinese idating market should be worth $315m in 2015.
- 18% of Asia internet traffic is on mobile, compared with 8% in North America.
- Mobile developers are increasingly using HTML5 web over native apps.
- The iDating industry is weak on engagement marketing (Push/SMS/Email) compared to the gaming industry.
- OtherLevels.com helps analyze and optimize cross channel engagement efforts.
PR NEWSWIRE - Nov 1 - WhiteLabelDating.com, the dating software and services provider will be exhibiting and presenting at iDate Sydney, taking place this week on Nov 7 - 9. WhiteLabelDating.com Operations Director, Matthew Pitt, will be sharing the secrets of how dating start ups can successfully enter this market in his iDate Sydney session, ‘Eating the Big Fish - Methods to Compete with the Leading AU Dating Sites’, on Friday 9th November at 1.30pm.
CHANNEL4 - Nov 1 - Global Personals is one of the UK's largest internet dating companies. Headquartered in Windsor it makes £40M a year, has 130 staff and runs 7,500 dating sites. Two former employees have described how the company duped daters into parting with their cash. Ryan Pitcher and Tom (not his real name) were recruited to join Global Personals to set up and run fake profiles on the company's network of sites. The team members would scour social networks and steal people's photos to use on their fake profiles. Each team member would be running as many as 15 different personalities. In a statement, Global Personals said: "Global Personals was one of the first online dating companies to stop using fake profiles. For almost three years we have actively encouraged other online dating businesses to also stop this practice." The success of the company's pseudo team means it has built up a database of 2.2m people. Trading Standards in Windsor said it has had "ongoing dealings" with Global Personals regarding the company's alleged use of fake profiles.
Ross Williams states: ...We appreciate the acknowledgement that Global Personals has received for being one of the only online dating businesses not to be carrying out this practice. We continue to campaign against pseudo profiles and ask the rest of the industry to stop this practice.
Your comments please...
PR NEWSWIRE - Oct 30 - WhiteLabelDating.com, which provides software and services to the dating industry has posted a record-breaking financial year. WLD paid out over $80 million in revenues to its top-tier and fast-growing partners. The company has enjoyed a 106% increase in new members on the platform in the past year, with 775,000 new members in August 2012 alone. According to Matthew Pitt, Operations Director at WLD, "2012 has been a fantastic year for the company and our partners, with total revenues growing by +61% to reach annualised revenues of £46m.”
PRESS RELEASE - Sep 20 - Casual.WhiteLabelDating.com, the dating platform that powers dating sites for brands and individuals worldwide, will be celebrating two years of success with the platform’s niching facility this October. The network now boasts ~2,000 niche sites. Some of the most successful sites on the network cater to cougars, MILFs and redheads. Popular sites also include CougarDate.us, TheDoggingSite.co/us and DateADomme.com.
OPW INTERVIEW - Aug 21 - If you think launching a mobile app is tough for your dating site, think again. White labellers have a compounded problem because they have hundreds to thousands of partners to keep happy. WhiteLabelDating’s CTO gave us the scoop on how they did it. - Mark Brooks
You've got a new mobile platform that you've launched for WhiteLabelDating.com. How's it doing for you, and can you tell us how it works?
We started the project one year ago and we launched it officially in May. It's a brand new platform we built using Ruby and Ruby on Rails. It uses Rackspace and JSON to transmit data under an API. It's a series of components, including search for sites and members, communication, and an API on top. What it really means is it's a great way for us to scale up and down because it's hosted on the cloud.
Did you think about using HTML5? Was that a consideration?
LinkedIn took that approach as well. Their app is 95% not resident on the devices. Have you taken the same approach?
Yes. Again, it looks like an app, it interacts, it feels very native. It's a nice rich interface.
What are the downsides of using mainly an HTML5 approach?
You can't just tell someone to download our app from the app store. It gets that prime recognition. Also with apps, it has a bit more native capability. With an app, you can use your phone's camera. There's also more offline capability. Phones are richer in the interface and it can be a bit faster. But we felt the trade-off at the moment is that desktop and mobile web are getting similar to the app experience and it was the right choice for our project.
How do you accept money?
All of the desktop payment options are available on mobile. You can use a card, premium SMS which fits very nicely with mobile phones. You can also use PayPal.
What's the cut on premium SMS these days?
It's quite high and we've talked to our supplier about it, and they despair as well. But the carriers are charging a hefty premium on top.
Last I looked, it was on the order of 50%. Is it under 30% now?
I think it's a lot lower than that, but it's still a hefty amount.
Will the app be in the Apple Store?
It is mobile web, so it won't be able to use the Apple Store for mobile payments. Mobile web is actually a very successful system. Since we launched in April, we're now seeing about 20% of our daily signups on mobile. 10% of subscriptions are coming on mobile. That's about 7% of our total revenues. That's increasing about 10% month on month.
How else do the mobile daters behave differently than the web-sourced users?
We are finding that people are spending about twice as long on the mobile as opposed to the desktop.
You also have some internal brands. How are you recruiting people into the Global Personals brands?
Both us and our partners are starting to explore advertising networks, especially targeted campaigns. We also have online advertising as well using the ad networks.
How is WhiteLabelDating's mobile app different from other providers?
I think the main difference for us is that we focused on the mobile web. It's the fact that with a dating site on our platform, a partner can have a mobile site set up very quickly and get up and running in minutes.
One of the nice things for the WhiteLabelDating partner is that they must surely be seeing improved retentions because the users are able to access the dating sites both online and on mobile. Is that increasing your retention numbers?
Our retention numbers are strong. We've seen through our visitor stats that the number of people using mobile is increasing. 26% of our visitors are coming through mobile, which is great.
What do you think the numbers will end up at in a year's time?
I think mobile will exceed desktop internet usage in the next couple of years, maybe by the year 2015.
How about the iPad?
We're not viewing the iPad as a mobile device at the moment, in terms of the experience. It will still display the standard desktop version of a dating site.
Was the WLD mobile developed entirely in house?
Yes, we recruited quite heavily last year for Ruby and Ruby on Rails. It's a core part of our business and very strategic, so it's something we wanted to be in house.
Do you recommend building in house or using a third party for a mobile app?
We've got a team of 37 split between Windsor and London. We like to keep development in house.
So you're taking the Apple approach?
Yeah, I think with Apple, design is a big part of their ethos. We believe that you can get greater conversions and greater satisfaction through the user experience.
Having been through this process, the thinking, design, and evolution of this mobile platform – what lessons did you learn? What would you have done differently?
You've got to get it right. Testing is a huge part. One of the things is that when we started we had a nice bank of iPhone, Android, Nokia, Blackberry, Symbian, and Windows phones on hand to do testing.
What about WAP? It's still prevalent in those markets such as South Africa. Is it a consideration at this stage?
It doesn't work on WAP. We feels it's a dying platform.
What feature are you most proud of?
We're really proud of how fast it works. It's a very nice, slick interface. It really feels like an app. It doesn't really feel like it's a mobile website.I think that's the biggest thing. We are quite pleased by how well the location services work. It takes advantage of the latest browsers in phones.
Another favorite subject: geolocation. What do you think the biggest concerns and issues are?
I think with privacy being a big part of using any location services, it something we wanted to be very careful about. We don't tell anyone where a member is. We don't give their exact pinpoint location. We give a fuzzy range of how far away they are from you.
How is WhiteLabelDating doing overall?
We just had another record month for April for us and for our partners. As you know, we just went past 12 million members and we're expecting about 15 million by the end of the summer. That's about one member every four seconds. Annual revenue is about 36 million pounds. About 23% of our traffic is now non-UK. Australia is one of our key markets. South Africa is very strong, and of course US as well.