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EDITORIAL Getting it together with dating

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Dating has long been one of the key value added services for the telemedia industry and, as technology has moved on, so too has the romance game. For a while back there it looked like it had become the preserve of the big boys such as eHarmony and Match.com, but the opportunities to create more niche dating services – and monetise them – have come thick and fast in the mobile era.

As this week’s newsletter points out, dating is still very ‘in the air’, with services abounding. In fact, this summer’s Affiliate World Europe (AWE19) show in Barcelona saw many affiliates and dating companies come together to mutual benefit (love?) as they both need each other to drive traffic and revenues.

This has spurred something of a renaissance in the dating game and given a whole new lease of life to dating in the telemedia sector.

Not only is there an excellent fit between affiliate marketing, publishers and dating companies – they all need demographic profiling and, once matched, can really get it on – but there are all the ancillary services that can work around it too.

One of the main ones is the tie up between mobile dating, affiliate marketing and carrier billing. Here with is a natural ecosystem: a source of ads for publishers/source of relevant clicks for publishers, a method of discovery (for the daters) that drives the dating business and a means to easily monetise it there and then.

Increasingly, this is the paradigm under which telemedia services operate: they are at the confluence of a number of other services and can serve as the main way to on-ramp people – think mobile gaming where carrier billing can be used to get going before being upsold to a more permanent card based payment – or as a way to drive revenue, with the carrier billing closing the loop – think parking services where the tech to find a parking space and park in it is there and carrier billing makes it super easy to pay. The same applies to ticketing and more.

In fact, it is in these combined services that the industry has always flourished and, now that the world is mobile, it seems there is now a whole new interest in what telemedia has to offer.

And it isn’t confined to Europe or the US, either. Latin Americais, like many developing markets, leapfrogging fixed internet to become mobile first – and with it come all the online services that need paying for.

M-commerce, digital downloads, subscriptions, dating – all are heavily growing areas across LatAm and they are increasingly looking at how carrier billing and allied alternative billing services can monetise them.

With World Telemedia Marbellacoming up in October 14-16ththe emphasis these days should very much be on both ‘World’ and ‘Telemedia’ as both are now true. And the show is the ideal place to learn what works where and find the partners to connect with to make these confluences of services work in your market. It’s not just dating where people are getting together, it is right across this industry.

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Paul Skeldon

Editor and content creator for Telemedia – for 18 years and counting

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