Smarter way to find better dates

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Hey guys, founder here, we just finished our invite-only pre-beta and are opening the beta. We spent the past year building Mesh to solve the problems we feel plague online dating, free or otherwise. Just some of our unique features, such as Mismatch and Dealbreakers ensure you find more of what you're looking for and less of what you don't. Mobile app is coming very soon, which takes a very different approach than the current norm. Let me know of any questions you have. One interesting tidbit is that we currently have quite a bit more women than men.
Another product to add to the Dating Apps collection. :) @asherraph - as you know, the dating space is super competitive and not useful until you've reached a critical mass of people. How are you thinking about this?
@rrhoover Completely agreed. Especially in our case as we apply big data goodness in finding you your matches. Fortunately, we're already off to a good start though as we already have about 2000 active members mostly focused in NY from our 8 week closed pre-beta. Now moving into beta we're adding a good number of users daily. We hope to already have a pretty active base before the mobile app is released which should help us grow at a more rapid clip. We've also been pretty active on our blog and social media and have a few other creative ideas in the works.
@rrhoover Can we get a collection of "products that have beat network effects" ? Though perhaps it's too short of a list. So hard to know whether it is possible to attack the "critical mass" problem directly or if it is just a function of everything else about the product, marketing, users themselves. Part of why I love reading PH. @asherraph - I really like the way you all have cast this as a more sophisticated tool for online dating. I think you really benefit from things like Tinder warming everyone up (no pun intended) to online dating, and now it may be time for some people to use a more serious tool to find a more serious relationship.
@basche42 Thanks. We feel Mesh's goal is to help you experience better in whatever it is you're looking for. Obviously, the tools lend itself to those seeking relationships, but we've also taken pains to ensure that even if you're looking for something casual, you still get that better, more positive experience.
@asherraph awesome. my advice would be wherever possible, make it playful :-D
The free online dating world is a hot mess. This keeps it classy - nice work @asherraph!
Some feedback ...if you're interested. I know a little about the space... ;) 1. The cropping photo thing feels really broken. I click crop mode crop then click crop. After that...I'm not sure what to do? I have a photo that is too says I can still use I click "crop mode" i do stuff...and well now it gives me more errors. I just realized "Upload now" is the next CTA. I felt that was unclear because it felt like the photos were uploaded. Maybe change Upload now to "Save". As a warning not everyone has 1200px of themselves. That's asking for a lot I feel. If I have no photo and I go to searches it gives me a pop-up. When I click the x it sends me to my edit profile. I understand it's trying to be aggressive but I think you can delay this a little bit more. I'm basically in an endless loop. -long story short - if you have a photo less than 1200px wide you're going to cry in sadness. 2. I'm not looking very hard but I'm not actually clear on what's so superior about this vs. other dating sites? Maybe a little more education in the copy would be nice. It seems to have all the same features most sites have. Help me understand? @rrhoover thanks for the dating app section I obviously find that very useful :)
@johnnyquachy @johnnyquachy Thanks for the feedback, we greatly appreciate it and will definitely incorporate it into future changes. Let me address each point. For #1, Crop is an optional step. With or without a crop, we have a minimum headshot size of around 400px, which is why we suggest larger photos, but 1200px is definitely not necessary, and the message is only triggered if you're below 400px in your selection. Though we do understand that 400px still might be a bit too much, which is why we allow them to use the picture as part of their photos regardless, but just not in their featured 5. As far as the process, we disable "Upload Now", until you can actually act, and also have a clear indication of how many steps to go, but you're absolutely right in that this process can be further refined, and we're constantly iterating based on feedback such as this. As far as the photo nag, we just added this earlier in the week to reduce lurker window shopping. We try to strike a balance of not tying into your social networks, but at the same time want to make sure it's fair to those that put themselves out there. Users without photos can still access the dash and their profile, and of course can see their matches once they upload a photo, which we make very easy to do in that message. You would break the loop by adding your photo, which is the intent. With Mesh, your profile isn't live until you have a photo, which is why we push this a bit, but nowhere near as aggressively as others that force it as part of the sign-up process. #2. Mesh is unique in both our goal ("Experience Better") and its features. Many of which are beneficial to women, as Mesh was created to solve the problems women commonly face in dating today. For example, there's our unique Mismatch and Dealbreakers (which we have patents on and are original to us) as well as "Only Mesh Knows", not to mention the smarter visiting rules, and a myriad of other little things that add up to an overall better experience. Not to mention we're completely free and always will be, without any gimmicky upsells or restrictions. Let's also not forget that Mesh is the first and only mainstream dating service to offer additional gender and orientation options such as queer, transgender, and non-binary, which is very important to many people. The intent of Mesh is to revamp and make better the online dating experience, which is a sum of both improvements large and small in every step of the process. Future features will make this even clearer, and our mobile app will trigger what we believe to be a paradigm shift in dating. At the end of the day, our goal is for our users to "Experience Better" in the process of finding whatever they're looking for, and for us to provide the tools to make dating easier and better.
@asherraph I'm not in the experience right now but I just remember being a little confused on what to do next with the photo upload part. I actually thought it was a bug or something. Sounds you're focusing excluding low quality users similar eharmony or one of our products, I like the concept of tailoring to women they definitely add more value to all dating sites. I don't' know too many sites that force you to upload a photo. All our sites don't and if they do you can still skip it (tiny text link). As for all the unique features. I don't doubt they're awesome but I'm being honest when I say I would of never know any of that exist without you telling me. Might consider bring that to the top. @rrhoover @rrhoover @rrhoover I just realized if someone tags you twice in a comment you get two notifications lol.
@johnnyquachy Truly appreciate the feedback, we'll do better to get our features out their front and center in a near-future update. There's definitely a gap between those that have been pitched personally or via our staff / versus those that discover the features on their own. We'll also be making some updates to the uploader partly based on your feedback, we had a good brainstorming session yesterday and came up with some ideas to make it even simpler. Thanks again.
@asherraph keep me updated! love to see where you guys taking.
Would love to see this launch in Silicon Valley! Eager to see how my NY friends like it.
@stttories We have a bunch of CA users, but since we're currently focused on NY, it does skew a bit. We plan a west coast push as soon as the mobile app is done.