I am in the process of developing a dating site. I know there are many but i like to develop websites in my spare time and i decided that this will be my next project.
For example, i thought of little viral marketing technique by making a funny animation of some sort. You know, the kind that yout friends forward you all the time... The joke, animation, etc has somthing to do with dating or people in love but it also has a small link in it to your site on witch people can click.
I olso thought of (probably already done but maybe a good idea) an option for your members to notify a friend about another member that would make a perfect date for him of her...
These are just a few idea's. Does anyone like to share some of their techniques? I am in an little country in Europe so i dont think i will hurt a lot of people by knowing their techniques... Thanks in advance...
actually, that matchmaker idea might have some merit somehow somewhere, but I doubt individual members would know enough about each other to make referrals. Regarding the other idea, wouldn't that just be junk mail? You could make a dating site that caters to the overweight. Don't know if it would fly but there are those who are trying to do "disabled dating sites". Or, if you really want to cater to a niche, do a BDSM date site. I say that jokingly, but who knows? You might get a very excited and loyal, if somewhat odd, clientele.
Probably tap into someone else's database and co-brand. Depending on the niche, each free signup will probably be worth between 5 and 10 bucks over the life of the member. This is on the major sites & a start-up may have to run free for years to gain critical mass to begin charging. Even when Match started they ran free for a year or two to gain critical mass back in the early days. Conversion rates, the cost to acquire a member, and the actual value of that member will vary greatly based on the niche targeted.
Even some of the larger networks have sites out there with marketing muscle behind them that probably don't make much at all. Since they have lots of personal info and know so much about their members, they may even make more selling advertising than on the personals memberships after all the expenses.
It'll definitely require a unique angle, and any kind of viral pass along apps that can be developed will help tremendously. Its an expensive market to advertise in and the cost of acquiring a member goes up daily. An affiliate program that pays out a minimum of 50% of initial paid registrations would be necessary to get anyone serious affiliates to heavily promote, maybe much higher than that given that conversion rates will probably be lower than the major networks unless there is some really unique twist to it.