Why dating apps want to be more like Snapchat

Coffee Meets Bagel and Zoosk's new Lively app are taking social cues from the popular video messaging app.

In order to differentiate themselves from Tinder, dating apps are now borrowing social and privacy features from another super-popular mobile service: Snapchat.

On Tuesday, Coffee Meets Bagel optimized its user-experience to give women more control over their dating connections. On the same day, Zoosk launched Lively, a brand-new dating app that uses video profiles so you can get a more accurate portrayal of your potential dates. The Coffee Meets Bagel update is now available for both iOS and Android, and Lively is iOS-only for now.

Coffee Meets Bagel was founded with the premise of sending you just one potential match (or a “bagel”) every day at noon, and has since made 2.5 billion introductions. Starting today, the app will surface more daily matches based on gender. Male users, who prefer to browse through more matches, will receive up to 20 a day, while women, who are more selective in the app, will get upwards of five daily matches.

Another big change: Women will only get matched with men who’ve already “liked” them on the app, giving female users something the company calls #LadiesChoice, or the power to start chatting with them instantly. Coffee Meets Bagel is one of only three dating apps where female users make up a majority, or about 57.3 percent, according to a recent SurveyMonkey poll.

coffee meets bagel ios app Coffee Meets Bagel

“Men and women behave very different on dating apps, so if we can serve them differently, there’s no reason why we should focus on one gender,” said Dawoon Kang, the cofounder of Coffee Meets Bagel. “For women, having that control of who they get to talk to and when is really important.”

Coffee Meets Bagel has incorporated a Snapchat-esque appeal since its launch in 2012: Users have 24 hours to either accept or reject a given bagel. But by expanding the number of bagels, the company could also see a boost in daily engagement. Coffee Meets Bagel users check the app on average of 2.4 times a day, whereas the average Snapchat user spends 30 minutes on the app every day. Furthermore, the #LadiesChoice feature adopts the built-in protection of private messaging apps to help women avoid harassment and unwanted attention.

A more obvious Snapchat replica, Lively is the brainchild of Zoosk, an online dating site and app with 38 million users. The company bills Lively as the first dating app to go beyond pictures and text because it lets you tell your “story” by creating a dating profile that incorporates videos. Yes, Snapchat has a very similar feature called “Stories.” You can edit your Lively collage in-app, and even pull photos and videos directly from Facebook and Instagram.

“Lively, our first offering from Zoosk Labs, is a huge step forward for us,” said Kelly Steckelberg, CEO of Zoosk. “Using photos and videos in a fun collage format, we’ve created a dating experience that helps you really get to know someone in a more authentic, intimate way.”

The idea for Lively came after Zoosk surveyed its young users and found that most of them thought social media profiles were more informative than traditional dating profiles. Instead of updating its existing Zoosk app, the company opted for launching a brand-new dating app.

According to SurveyMonkey, only 8.4 percent of Zoosk users are younger than 30, a lower percentage than on Match.com. Understandably, Lively seems to have been designed to help Zoosk close that age gap. It’s a dating app tailor-made for the Snapchat generation.

Why this matters: These drastic changes prove that dating apps are not afraid of taking big risks in order to standout. And in terms of daily engagement and younger demographics, there is no better example to try to imitate than Snapchat.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags SnapChat

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Oscar Raymundo

Macworld.com
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?