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A spin on something old

Discussion in 'General Entrepreneur Discussion' started by M-M, Aug 29, 2007.

  1. M-M
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    M-M New Contributor

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    I have an idea for a niche dating site. As far as I can tell there's nothing like it. I don't have any experience in this direction, but I think it has potential (don't we all with new ideas?). Without knowing the details, do you guys think this is worth pursuing?
     
  2. 1320Trader
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    1320Trader New Contributor

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    How does that saying go?

    "The only bad idea is the one not pursued"
     
  3. M-M
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    M-M New Contributor

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    Very true. I guess I'm just a little nervous since I've never done anything like it and I'm not sure how to go about it. I've got the details worked out and my brother will probably design and program it for me. He's done work for me before and I can rely on him. I have a few ideas as far as promotion goes as it is somewhat controversial.
     
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    Will this site be able to generate enough hits that it can be free...where you make money off of advertising? Or will is it to small of a niche to where you will have to charge a monthly fee?
     
  5. Andrew
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    When it comes to online dating, all that matters is: where does the customer come from?

    In terms of design, websites, billing, and so on, there are countless out of the box solutions. Once you have a site with users, then you will understand specifically what you do and do not need, and you can customize the platform. Until then, custom software can be a huge roadblock. Where to start? Try this link: http://onlinepersonalswatch.typepad.com/news/2006/04/list_of_dating_.html

    I use custom software, and I run a modestly sized free niche dating site. We (referring to me, my programmer, and business associate on this project) were working on rolling out a bunch of sites, but the online dating industry took a steep drop this year. Earlier advertisers were spending lots and lots of money. I think they knew they were in trouble then but were attempting to spend their way out of it.

    Previously targetted dating traffic was worth anywhere from 50 cents to over a dollar a click. That meant being ad supported was more profitable than running a pay site. Now its worth a fraction of that. Myspace, Facebook, and other social networking sites are mostly to blame here. People can just get what they want for free now.

    Here is what I would suggest: first get something up and running as soon as possible. If you go with a pre-made solution, make sure you host it and own the database of users (this is really your only "asset.")

    Next, figure out where you users are going to come from. Find as many other websites that your niche market uses & are targeted to that market. Figure out how to promote yourself on those sites, preferably for free. If you launch your site as a free dating site it will be easier. You can switch to a paid model later when you have a user base. Once you go paid you can figure out your revenue per use, and buy advertising. Anticipate spending several dollars per free member (though this will vary greatly depending on the niche.)
     
  6. michael515
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    In my experience I'd rather be controversial and stand out than be just another "me-too" business.

    Research is key - find out if there is actually a market for your business. If so, test small - then invest more only after you see results...

    Test the business model with, i.e., pay-per-click ad's. Then you could keep your investment small and see if it works - beautiful thing about the web. I'm not sold on spending months or years planning until you tested to see if there are people who are willing to pay you for your service. Maybe this is different for big time investments but that doesn't appear to be the case here.

    Either way - if the $$ and time investment is low to try, go for it because you'd have very little to lose and upside potential of a business cannot be matched with an other way of making money.

    A little nervous? That's good. I belive in being a little scared - comfort is the enemy of success. You cannot fail - you'll only learn things that 95%+ of people don't because they don't have the courage to try.

    Just my opinion...

    Michael
     
  7. M-M
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    M-M New Contributor

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    Thanks guys, and you are all correct. I actually came up with another, non-related idea this evening that seems more worth pursuing at the moment, but I'll keep an eye on both.
     

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