Voted Best Answer
Sep 21, 2021 - 08:25 PM
As Shayan Zadeh the co-founder of Zoosk explained in our How We Made It In Ecommerce interview, dating sites are a particularly hard kind of two-sided marketplace.
Not only do you have to solve the “chicken-egg” problem and have similar numbers of men and women (ideally many more women to make the experience decent for men), you also need to maintain this balance per region.
In other words, dating sites are a hyper-local two sided marketplace. This is why historically, the most successful dating sites do city-by-city launches.
Unlike the previous poster, I actually think it is much harder to find wealthy men who are single than it is to find attractive women who are single, especially younger women. Think about it, there are many more younger single, attractive women than there are wealthy men.
Unless a man inherits his wealth (a relatively small percentage of the population) he has to work for it, and creating wealth is not easy. It also takes time to accumulate. Being attractive however, requires no work (okay maybe just staying fit and decent fashion sense) or passage of time.
By the way, there are studies that show married men, on average, make a lot more money than single men (although the causality could go either way i.e. married men are able to better focus on making money or men with money are likely to be already married)
With a little creativity, you can build a decent sized list of single, attractive women. One classic way to do this is to first build something that is useful for one side of the marketplace, without needing the other side.
For example, you might go to all the high end clubs in your city, single out the attractive women and give them coupons for a high-end fashion store. To redeem the coupon they need to sign up for the site if they are single (with the promise of meeting wealthy men) or refer one attractive single friend.
Once you have a few dozen women, you can then introduce the men. An idea that I know works is an ad in the Wall Street Journal. I’ve seen Selective Search do this for years, and so they must be succeeding.
Image Credit: TwoXFour.com
No one pays for expensive WSJ ads repeatedly unless they are making money. But keep in mind they charge men a $20,000 fee, so depending on your business model, this may or may not work for you. To ensure you maintain the hyper-local balance you could do regional ads.
By the way, the book Platform Revolution has many more proven ideas for solving the "chicken-egg" problem.