OPW - Jun 18 - The final panel debate is the culmination of the Internet Dating Conference. Panel participants include Frederick Vallaeys from Google AdWords, Mark Brooks from Online Personals Watch, Tai Lopez from Niche Enterprises, Violet Lim from Lunch Actually, Karinna Kittles-Karsten from Sacred Love, Julie Spira, and Victor Daniel from Elitemate.
The first discussion topic was the growing mobile market and its affects on online dating. The mobile platform is a powerful tool, but screen size limitations and platform limitations will affect site design and revenue models. Mobile sites and applications must be streamlined and intuitive to work well and be adopted by consumers. Advances in mobile technology, in particular smartphone platforms, are helping to increase the end user experience and development capabilities. Multitasking capability is one important advancement which will improve the user experience. Push technology also keeps the information flowing and drives user engagement on mobile devices.
Users tend to download mobile dating applications and use them for a short time, normally a week, then go inactive. The key to breaking through this problem is continuing user engagement to keep them active on your application. Mobile applications and sites have the potential to open up additional revenue streams for online dating companies through proper monetization and billing solutions. Mobile is gaining ground, but as with all new technologies, it will take time to ramp up and gain strong traction in the industry.
The second topic for discussion was social dating. What is fueling the growth of these sites and how well do they retain users over the long term? One aspect of social dating is the safety of meeting people within a group of people known by your friends. Another aspect is the ease of adoption and signup for the sites. The true test of the success of social dating sites is how effective they are at connecting people and creating relationships.
Discussions continued on to the importance of partnering with academia to further develop the dating experience. The science and psychology behind human interactions and relationships need to be implemented into the online dating experience to create successful and lasting matches. Site operators should put efforts into educating members in the skills needed to be successful in dating and relationships.
Finally, all of the panel participants believe that the online dating market will go up over the six months.