Due to the all-consuming nature of the Kickstarter project I recently ran, I’ve had zero time for dating lately. However, I still get e-mails from the various sites I’ve used over the past few years.
One of the more interesting matchmaking (note that I didnt’ say “dating”–I’ll get to that in a minute) websites is one that I discovered this past summer. It’s a brand-new free site called At the Pool, and it hinges upon one key concept: One match a day.
I love the simplicity of that. In fact, you might recall that I hypothesized a similar concept that merged dating and daily deals about a year ago (see that post here). So I was excited to see someone else who bought into that concept.
There isn’t a giant database of people to filter through like you’re sorting cattle (I say that as if I’ve sorted cattle. I haven’t, as far as I’m aware). There isn’t horde of people e-mailing and winking at you. And there aren’t the long daily updates of 5 new people who are *perfect* for you even though they meet none of your specifications.
Also, like I said, it’s a matchmaking site, which doesn’t limit it to dating. Maybe you just want to meet new friends or find business partners. People inherently seek to connect with other people, even introverts like me. At the Pool offers a very elegant solution by breaking down those connections into bite-size choices.
Now, there is a downside to the bite-size choice, something I discovered rather quickly. When I signed up for the site, I said that I wanted to connect with other entrepreneurs (either gender) and dating partners (women only). That seemed to make sense at the time. But when I started getting the daily e-mails, I discovered rather quickly that–surprise!–I much preferred getting matched with pretty, single girls than random dudes who want to network.
That leads into the one other big problem with the site, which I’m trying to help solve a little bit by writing this post: There simply aren’t enough people on it yet. I’m sure there are many thousands on the site, but for a matching making site to be effective, you need hundreds of thousands (and ideally millions).
It’s obvious that having more people on the site will make it more useful, but the userbase issue is especially important because of the daily matches. If I’m not matched up with someone who fits my parameters every day, eventually I’m going to tune out those e-mails. That’s tough to pull off if you’re asking for very specific qualifications, but in my case, all I wanted were single women in St. Louis who were 24 and older (and ideally with profile photos–it’s weird to be on a site like this and not have profile photos). The site matched me with a lot of women, but very few were single, even fewer were over 24, and none of them were in St. Louis. Although location is slightly less important if I’m trying to connect with entrepreneurs instead, it still plays a key role in my decision to engage someone.
But I think the site has a lot of potential, and you can help. Hop over to At the Pool and sign up. It’ll only take a few seconds, and it’s literally for anyone, single or taken, entrepreneur or consumer. There must be some type of person out there with whom you’d like to connect.