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If you are looking to give online dating a try, it can seem like there are a million online dating sites. But what if you want to find a site geared towards finding a geek or gamer? Below I’ve put together a list of 5 sites that offer geek and/or gamer targeting. All of the sites on the list are free to use and most seem to have a decent number of members.
If you are a gamer looking for a gamer, then GamerDating might be the right choice for you. The site is still in beta but it appears to be fully functional. Looking at their user map, the heaviest concentration of users is in Europe. GamerDating offers a blog, forum and people search. A basic search for women seeking men ages 18-75 returned 41 results. The site lists about 2,000 total members.
Cupidtino appears to be the perfect dating site for Apple fanboys and fangirls. Cupidtino describes their service as, “…the first ever “Mac-inspired” dating site. It’s goal is to bring Apple fans and lovers of beautiful hardware and software design together.” You must be on an Apple device to use the site (I wasn’t allowed in on my PC) and when you sign up, you tell the service what type of Apple device you are looking for. For example, I am looking for a woman, 30-35 years old, who owns an iPad 2 with Smart Cover and once owned an Apple IIe. The service appears to be free and membership including posting photos of yourself, answering profile questions and engaging in the community.
Fox Reality Channel, you know the channel that runs high quality shows like "Battle of the Bods", is currently casting "internet nerds" for a new reality show. The show, "The Cindy Margolis Dating Project" will feature not just some special nerds but also the suave and sophisticated. It’s certainly disappointing that the news brief makes sure you know that an Internet nerd could never be suave and/or sophisticated.
The show will feature Cindy Margolis and a bunch of guys over 18 who are looking to date the 40+ model. In case you don’t know who Cindy is, I’ve embedded her image below. Back in the days of 28.8 baud, Cindy was the most downloaded person online.
In case you are wondering, anything you do online that’s "real-time" qualifies you as an Internet nerd.
Check out the nifty placeholder site they have created for Cindy – you can even move her back and forth by moving your mouse – one of those darn Internet nerds must have added that bigtime functionality!
Earlier this week we learned that a major tech blogger hired a very expensive private dating service to help him find true love. For those of us who don’t have big wads of cash, a new startup has launched to help make it easier to search a variety of dating sites at once to help you find the perfect match.
Rubixx is a new startup that aggregates search results from a number of popular dating sites including match.com, friendfinder, cupid, lavalife, american singles and millionairematch. It appears that they send affiliate codes across for their business model.
The Rubixx home page (also the search page) is a bit confusing. It takes on a mad libs feel but as a user I didn’t know where to click – took a bit to figure out but the search worked fine once I realized where to click. The search results page uses dynamic components so multiple pages load very quickly and refining the search also is a swift process.
Once you select the person of your dreams, Rubixx pops open a window explaining that you may need to complete your search again on the dating site (wtf?) and then sends you off. When I selected a woman from Match.com and reached the Match.com site, I was forced to create a membership – no peeking was allowed.
The site says they have 11 million active members – my guess is thats not actual active users of Rubixx – but instead a total pool they have to search from. Now I am off to finally find the perfect Mrs. Stern!
Check out our interview below where we discuss a variety of topics including: what is Ignighter, what type of people use the service, how does group dating work and any success stories. Apparently some people have reported "getting lucky" after going on a group date. Lastly we discuss what the Ignighter team learned by being part of the TechStars program.
At the Web 2.0 Expo in NYC, I sat down with Spark Networks President and COO Gregory Liberman. We discussed the 30+ dating sites that make up Spark Networks. Here are my notes from our conversation which centered mostly around Jdate.
Spark Networks has 30+ dating sites and most of them are targeted towards a group. Gregory notes that people who are looking for serious relationships are seeking targeted networks. The three largest dating sites in their network are Jdate, BlackSingles and ChristianMingle. They believe that they are different because of the targeting, most of their competition tries to be all things to all people.
Spark Networks runs over 800 singles events a year. Revenue comes from subscriptions and advertising. Jdate subscriptions begin at $39/month and for those browsing the site, advertising is displayed. Gregory noted that ads are displayed to subscribers as well but said "most" of these ads are house ads promoting events and other services. I wonder if any Web 2.0 startups could get away with charging a subscription fee and displaying any advertising at all.
As for success rates, 60 Jdate subscribers a day report back to Spark Networks that they found their soulmate on Jdate.
I asked about comparisons to PlentyOfFish and eHarmony. Gregory said that PlentyOfFish actually drives traffic to sites in his network because of the ad model they employ. As for eHarmony, Gregory believes not everyone wants to fill out a 350 question survey. Jdate allows members to search and utilizes a basic survey to help align members.
In terms of what’s new on their network of sites, Gregory shared two new premium features. The first is an option to highlight your profile in search results. This works similar to highlighting an auction on eBay or a job listing on Indeed. The other update is featured profile. This allows members to push their profile to people they want to meet on search results. Let’s assume you are looking for a 30 year old woman with 2 children but she is looking for a 20 year old man with no children. Using this new option, you could force your profile into her search results basically saying "hey look at me, I want you!". On Jdate, this feature is $10/month.
The online singles market continues to be a huge moneymaker for Spark Networks and the other sites in the market. As long as people want to find that special someone, there will always be someone willing to pay to find that person.
Last week I posted an article where I discussed a variety of online ads from Singlesnet. In the ads they state, "". The ad I included in the video showed the profile of "SarahC_1225". Since that posting, I’ve received between 35-100 unique visitors per day coming from the search engines. Each query is for the term SarahC_1225. Nearly 700 unique visitors total in the last week.
Singlesnet has lost a golden opportunity to capitalize on searchers looking for information about this "Sarah" person. If you check out the Google results for the term, Singlenet isn’t listed at all. If they were smart, they would create landing pages for every fake persona they create. This would allow them to own the search engine result and drive traffic back to Singlesnet. While I don’t believe most startups are creating fake personalities like this, you should always consider the terms and the phrases that your startup might rank for. Blogger buzz dies off quickly while search engine traffic is the complete opposite, building slowly over time. Don’t lose your chance to market to 700 new people this week because you weren’t thinking about properly marketing your company.
Here’s SarahC_1225 and her friend, SarahH_1221:
While I was working on my Alexa story and video earlier this week, I came across the ad on the right. The ad is for a singles dating site and features a woman, some profile information for "sarahc_1225" and a simple search box.
What caught my attention was the line at the bottom of the ad. It reads:
"Photos may not be of actual singlesnet.com members"
I signed up for an account and I was unable to find sarahc_1225. While the search didn’t work based on what I entered in the form, I did receive a variety of profiles with photos of women.
Would it really be that hard for SinglesNet to show actual members of the service? Take some of the successful members and do a professional photoshoot with them. Would you consider this online advertising tactic bait and switch?
This type of ad is worse than those dancing mortgage ads. Do the ad networks and the content publishers have a responsibility to deactivate any ads that could be considered bait-and-switch?
Perhaps we should stick to dating sites like Sweet on Geeks that from what they say is as real as it gets.