We estimate that up to 99% of new online dating services eventually fail. Because we run an information site, directory, and industry blog, we are able to track numbers, new dating services, and failures. Out of the over 1,000 online dating services that open every year only about 10 will amount to anything.
So why am I telling you this? I want you to have a realistic expectation of what you are getting into. You need to have the drive, passion, and resources that go beyond the 99% of other people that dabble in online dating. You need to be serious about it. Read my "Back to Reality" column at http://www.onlinedatingmagazine.com/col ... ustry.html
. Once you see the reality, decide if you have the time and money to overcome the huge odds. If so, go into it with every ounce of passion and ambition you have.
You're already on the right track, having inquired in this forum of peers (good idea, IDATE). Here are a few starter points for you:
1) "Relaunch" your service and do so with specific things that set it apart from other services (you already have one - it's a niche site. Now contact your local media and provide them with press releases and interview opportunities.
2) Go for the local angle. Take out classified ads in your local area. What you want to do is make sure there are enough people first signed up in ONE area (locally) before expanding out. If you open too big too soon, no one will sign up and your member base will take forever to build. But by doing local promotions, advertising, benefits, etc. you strongly build up an area where people can succeed in finding dates, then slowly expand out beyond that.
3) Offer an incentive to sign up. For example, I offer a free ebook to online dating service Webmasters on success in online dating that they can use as an incentive to get people to sign up for their service. New service PickMeQuick.com is giving away an Ipod for whoever refers the most new members. Come up with methods to help people over the hurdle of deciding whether or not to become a member.
4) Study the art of Web marketing or come up with some sort of BARTER for someone who does Web marketing. To get members, you need to get traffic. A good search engine optimization expert and Web marketer can help you establish a stronger presence to attract people.
I want to see you be one of the 1% that succeeds, so develop a really strong plan and go for it.
Best of luck to you,
Joe Tracy, Publisher
Online Dating Magazine
Online Dating Industry Journal
Columnist, Inside the Online Dating Industry