Do you want to start a matchmaking service? If YES, here is a complete guide to starting a matchmaking service business with NO money and no experience.
Okay, so we have provided you an in-depth sample matchmaking service business plan template. We also took it further by analyzing and drafting a sample matchmaking service marketing plan backed up by actionable guerrilla marketing ideas for matchmaking service companies. In this article, we will be considering all the requirements for starting a matchmaking service business. So put on your entrepreneurial hat and let’s proceed.
What is a Matchmaking Service?
A matchmaking services company is a company that provides a reliable platform where eligible bachelors and spinsters network to find their life partners, mates or dates. Usually, they run a website where clients display their pictures, profiles and their intentions et al. A matchmaking services company is classified under the dating services industry, and the industry is indeed a big and thriving industry in the United States of America and of course in most countries of the world.
Just like most businesses, the matchmaking services company line of business is open to as many people that are interested in the industry as long as you have what it takes to run the business and provide the needed resource that your clients want.
Even if you don’t have the finance and other requirements for starting a standard matchmaking services company, you can come into the industry by starting out as a small business creating platforms where singles in your immediate community can network and connect.
If you have decided to start a matchmaking services company, then you must make sure that you carry out thorough feasibility studies and market survey. This will enable you properly locate the business in a community or city with the right demography (a city with loads of eligible bachelors and spinsters); and location that can readily accept your services and adequately reward you for it.
So, if you have done the required feasibility studies and market research, then you might want to venture into this business. If you have been pondering on starting your own matchmaking services company, but do not know how to go about it, then you should consider going through this article; it will give you the needed guide and direction.
Starting a Matchmaking Services Business – A Complete Guide
- Industry Overview
Matchmaking services company is part of the dating services industry and the industry is made up of companies that provide services that allow eligible singles to meet with other eligible singles, usually with the intent of pursuing romantic relationships.
Matchmaking services can be provided via phone, internet, magazine and newspaper. It is important to state that organizations that specialize in singles events such as speed dating et al are part of the dating services industry, but social networking sites that are not strictly dating sites are not part of the industry.
The industry to a large extent, has performed pretty well over the years as a growing number of eligible singles turn to the internet to look for mates and love. The proliferation of broadband internet connections and greater legitimacy surrounding online dating has helped the industry outpace the overall economy and capture a rising share of consumers’ dollar. Going forward, the percentage of households with access to the internet is projected to continue rising throughout the period, which will in turn help expand the consumer market for online dating services.
The Dating Services industry that matchmaking services business is a part of is indeed a large industry and pretty much active in most countries of the world and countries such as United States of America, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Holland, Switzerland, Australia and Canada et al are highly profitable destinations.
Statistics has it that in the United States of America alone, there are about 6,747 registered and licensed dating/matchmaking services companies scattered all across the United States responsible for directly employing about 9,592 people and the industry rakes in a whooping sum of $3 billion annually. The industry is projected to grow at a 5.3 percent annual rate within 2012 and 2017. It is important to state that eHarmony and Match Group have the lion market share of the available market in the industry.
The dating services industry will continue to blossom because more and more eligible bachelors and spinsters will emerge and realize that somehow they would need the services of a matchmaking services company to help them connect with other eligible singles, to find love and live a fulfilled life.
From all available statistics, it is safer to say that the dating services industry is growing steadily despite the competitive nature of the industry. One thing is certain, if you are well positioned (both online and offline), you have the required business skills, networks and you have a robust assemblage of eligible spinsters and bachelors under your network, you are likely not going to struggle to compete favorable in the dating services industry.
Other factors that encourage entrepreneurs to start their own matchmaking services company could be that the business is easy to set up and the start – capital is indeed affordable; you can actually start your own matchmaking services company from the comfort of your house. All you need to do is to create an office somewhere in your house and have a functional and user-friendly dating website. People usually pay you for the services you render.
Starting a Matchmaking Services Business – Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- Demographics and Psychographics
The demographic and psychographic composition of those who hire the services of matchmaking services companies cut across all eligible singles of different race, nationality and culture that have the capacity to pay for their services, hence the demographic composition of a matchmaking services company is all encompassing.
The truth is that when it comes to matchmaking services company; there is indeed a wide range of available customers. In essence, your target market can’t be restricted to just specific eligible singles within your location, but to all eligible singles within and outside the city where you have your business presence and who can afford your services especially if you will operate a functional dating website.
List of Niche ideas Within the Matchmaking Service Business That You Can Specialize in
Most matchmaking services companies tend to get involved in loads of services as it relates to providing a platform where eligible singles can get to connect and find their mates, but that does not mean that there are no niche areas in the industry.
As a matter of fact, some eligible singles will only deal with a matchmaking services company that specializes in connecting singles of same race or same sex et al hence the need for some matchmaking services company to carve a niche for themselves.
Aside from creating platforms where eligible singles connect, most matchmaking services companies also specializes in one or more of the under listed;
- Providing online personal introductory services
- Providing specialist print media introductory services
- Providing cell phone introductory services
- Organizing singles events
The Level of Competition in the Dating Services Industry
The competition that exists in the dating services industry of business goes beyond competition amongst dating/matchmaking services companies in your location; you are expected to compete with other organizations such as churches and clubs who have the capacity to also connect eligible singles.
The truth is that no matter the level of competition in an industry, if you have done your due diligence and you brand and promote your services or business properly, you will always make headway in the industry. Just ensure you have a robust assemblage of eligible spinsters and bachelors under your network, a functional user – friendly dating website, you can deliver excellent customer care services and you know how to reach out to your target market (eligible spinsters and bachelors).
But there are several matchmaking services companies and other related businesses in the dating services industry scattered all around the United States and even in the globe. So, if you choose to start your own matchmaking services company in the United States of America, you will definitely meet some level of competition amongst matchmaking services companies and other businesses or individuals that can offer the services that you are offering.
List of Well – Known Brands in the Matchmaking Service Industry
In every industry, there are always brands that perform better or are better regarded by customers and the general public than others. Some of these brands are those that have been in the industry for a long time, while others are best known for how they conduct their businesses and the results they have achieved over the years.
These are some of the leading matchmaking services companies and other related dating services in the United States of America and in the globe;
- Match Group
- Selective Search
- Kelleher International Boston Matchmaking Service
- The Modern Matchmaker Inc.
- Janis Spindel Serious Matchmaking
- Matchmaking Institute
- SPIES Single Professional Introductions for the Especially Selective
- Starting Point USA INC
- True MATCH USA
- Bottom Line USA Inc
- Elite Connections
- It’s Just Lunch Dating Services
- Encounters International
- Telemates Dating Services
- Premier Match Dating Services
- Table For Six -Dating Services for Singles in San Francisco CA
- Dream One Love Ltd
- Millionaires Club International
- The Dallas Dating Company
If you are planning towards successfully launching a business and maximizing profits, then you need to ensure that you get your economic and cost analysis right and try as much as possible to adopt best practices in the industry you choose to build a business in.
Matchmaking services business is not a green business as you will come across several matchmaking services companies and dating services sites when you drive through town, search through directories and browse through the internet.
So, if you are mapping out your economic and cost analysis, you should carry out thorough market survey and costing of what is required to rent a space where you are expected to open your matchmaking services company and the amount required to purchase office gadgets and furniture and also the running cost to successfully run the business.
If you are considering starting a matchmaking services company, then your concern should not be limited to the cost of renting an office space and purchasing office gadgets and furniture, but also on branding and on how to build a robust clientele base (loads of eligible bachelors and spinsters). The truth is that if you are able to build a robust clientele base, you are sure going to maximize profits in the business.
Starting Your Matchmaking Services Company Business from Scratch vs Buying a Franchise
If you are looking towards starting a matchmaking services company, you would have to start from the scratch because you can hardly get the franchise of a matchmaking services company to buy.
Besides starting a matchmaking services company from the scratch is less stressful when compared to other small – scale businesses which usually requires detailed groundwork before launching the business. With a matchmaking services company, you should just try as much as possible to get the right assemblage of eligible bachelors and spinsters, functional user – friendly dating website, office tools and equipment, build business relationship with key stakeholders and then leverage on every marketing tool within your disposal especially the internet to market your services.
Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face When Starting a Matchmaking Services Company
If you decide to start your own matchmaking services company today, one of the major challenges you are likely going to face is the presence of well – established matchmaking services companies and dating services companies/websites that also offer similar services that you offer. The only way to avoid this challenge is to create your own market.
Some other challenges and threats that you are likely going to face are economic downturn and unfavorable government policies. There is nothing you can do as regards these threats and challenges other than to stay positive that things will work well for you.
Starting a Matchmaking Services Business – Legal Matters
- Best legal entity to use for this type of business
When considering starting a matchmaking services company, the legal entity you choose will go a long way to determine how big the business can grow; some matchmaking services company design their business for neighborhood market, some for city wide market, while others for national market and international market.
Generally, you have the options of either choosing a general partnership, limited liability company, or even a sole proprietorship for a matchmaking services company. Ordinarily, sole proprietorship should have been the ideal business structure for a small – scale matchmaking services company especially if you are just starting out with a moderate start – up capital in a small neighborhood and as a one man show.
But if your intention is to grow the business and have offices and corporate clients all across key cities in the United States of America and other countries of the world with a robust assemblage of eligible bachelors and spinsters under your network, then choosing sole proprietorship is not an option for you. Limited Liability Company, LLC or even general partnership will cut it for you.
Setting up an LLC protects you from personal liability. If anything goes wrong in the business, it is only the money that you invested into the limited liability company that will be at risk. It is not so for sole proprietorships and general partnerships. Limited liability companies are simpler and more flexible to operate and you don’t need a board of directors, shareholder meetings and other managerial formalities.
These are some of the factors you should consider before choosing a legal entity for your matchmaking services company; limitation of personal liability, ease of transferability, admission of new owners, investors’ expectation and of course taxes.
If you take your time to critically study the various legal entities to use for your matchmaking services company and having offices and clients all across the United States of America and other countries of the world with a robust assemblage of eligible bachelors and eligible spinsters under your network, you will agree that limited liability company; an LLC is most suitable. You can start this type of business as limited liability company (LLC) and in future convert it to a ‘C’ corporation or an ‘S’ corporation especially when you have the plans of going public.
Catchy Business Name Ideas Suitable for a Matchmaking Services Company
When it comes to choosing a name for your business, you should be creative because whatever name you choose for your business will go a long way to create a perception of what the business represents. Usually it is the norm for people to follow the trend in the industry they intend operating from when naming their business.
If you are considering starting your own matchmaking services company, here are some catchy names that you can choose from;
- Romeo & Juliet® Matchmaking Services Company, LLC
- Beauty and Handsome® Matchmaking Services Company, LLC
- Get Connected© Matchmaking Services Company, Inc.
- Eligible Single’s Arena® Dating Services Company, Inc.
- Singles Connect™ Dating Services Company, Inc.
- Daniela McCook® Matchmaking Services Company, Inc.
- Singles’ Hub© Matchmaking Services Company, Inc.
- Trina Capello & Co® Matchmaking Services Company, LLP
- Sure Mates© Matchmaking Services Company, Inc.
- Link Up© Matchmaking Services Company, Inc.
In the United States and in most countries of the world, you can’t operate a business without having some of the basic insurance policy covers that are required by the industry you want to operate from. So, it is important to create a budget for insurance and perhaps consult an insurance broker to guide you in choosing the best and most appropriate insurance policies for your matchmaking services company.
Here are some of the basic insurance covers that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own matchmaking services company in the United States of America;
- General insurance
- Health/Medical insurance
- Liability insurance
- Workers compensation
- Overhead expense disability insurance
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
- Payment protection insurance
Intellectual Property Protection/Trademark
If you are considering starting your own matchmaking services company, usually you may not have any need to file for intellectual property protection/trademark. This is because the nature of the business makes it possible for you to successfully run it without having any cause to challenge anybody in court for illegally making use of your company’s intellectual properties.
But if you just want to protect your company’s logo and other business documents or software that are unique to you or even jingles and media production concepts, then you can go ahead to file for intellectual property protection. If you want to register your trademark, you are expected to begin the process by filing an application with the USPTO.
Professional Certification Needed to Run a Matchmaking Services Business?
Aside from the results you produce as it relates to providing the required platform needed for eligible singles to connect and find their mates/love, professional certification is one of the main reasons why some matchmaking services companies stand out.
If you want to make an impact in the industry, you should work towards acquiring all the needed certifications in your area of specialization. You are strongly encouraged to pursue professional certifications; it will go a long way to show your commitment towards the business.
Certification validates your competency and shows that you are highly skilled, committed to your career, and up-to-date in the market. These are some of the certifications you can work towards achieving if you want to run your own matchmaking services company;
- Membership – Certified and Professional Matchmaker Network
- Certified Matchmaker (CMM)
- Certified Professional Matchmaker
- Licensed Bashert Matchmaker – NLP™ Clarity
Please note that you can successfully run a matchmaking services company in the United States and in most countries of the world without necessarily acquiring professional certifications and business license as long as you have adequate experience cum background when it comes to working with people.
List of Legal Documents You Need to Run a Matchmaking Services Company
The essence of having the necessary documentation in place before launching a business in the United States of America cannot be overemphasized. It is a fact that you cannot successfully run any business in the United States without the proper documentations. If you do, it won’t be too long before the long hand of the law catches up with you.
These are some of the basic legal documents that you are expected to have in place if you want to legally run your own matchmaking services company in the United States of America;
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Business License
- Matchmaking License
- Tax Payer’s ID/Tax Identification Number
- Health inspection Certificate
- Business Plan
- Contract Document
- Non – disclosure Agreement
- Employee Handbook
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Insurance Policy
- Company Bylaws
- Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
- Building License
- Franchise or Trademark License (optional)
Financing Your Matchmaking Services Company
Starting a matchmaking services company can be cost effective especially if you choose to start on a small scale by running the business from your home or sharing office space. Securing a standard office space in a business district, running a functional and user – friendly dating services website and purchasing office gadgets and furniture et al are part of what will consume a large chunk of your startup capital.
If you choose to start the business on a large scale, you would need to go source for fund to finance the business because it is expensive to start a standard large – scale matchmaking services company with a well-equipped office and over a handful of full – time employees under your payroll.
No doubt when it comes to financing a business, one of the first things you should consider is to write a good business plan. If you have a good and workable business plan document in place, you may not have to labor yourself before convincing your bank, investors and your friends to invest in your business.
Here are some of the options you can explore when sourcing for start – up capital for your matchmaking services company;
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Sell of shares to interested investors
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from donor organizations and angel investors
- Source for soft loans from your family members and your friends
Choosing a Suitable Location for your Matchmaking Services Company
When it comes to choosing a location for a matchmaking services company, you can choose to locate the business in any location of your choice especially if you are the only matchmaker. If you only operate a dating website, the services do not require your clients to come to you except for meetings, so it can be located in any location.
Most importantly, before choosing a location for your matchmaking services company, ensure that you first conduct a thorough feasibility studies and market survey. The possibility of you coming across similar business that just closed shop in the location you want to open yours can’t be ruled out. This is why it being very important to gather as much facts and figures before choosing a location to set – up your own matchmaking services company.
These are some of the key factors that you should consider before choosing a location for your matchmaking services company;
- The demography of the location
- The demand for the services of matchmaking services in the location
- The lifestyle and purchasing power of eligible singles in the location
- Accessibility of the location
- The number of matchmaking services companies and other players in the dating services industry that also provide matchmaking services in the location
- The local laws and regulations in the community
- Traffic, parking and security
Starting a Matchmaking Services Business – Technical and Manpower Details
On the average, there are no special technologies or equipment needed to run an average matchmaking services company except for relevant software apps, computers, internet facility, telephone, fax machine and office furniture (chairs, tables, and shelves) amongst others and all these can be gotten as fairly used.
As regards leasing or outright purchase of an office facility, the choice is dependent on your financial standings, but the truth is that to be on the safe side, it is advisable to start off with a short – term rent / lease while test running the business in the location. If things work out as planned, then you go on a long – term lease or outright purchase of the property but if not, then move on and source for other ideal location / facility for such business.
When it comes to hiring employees for a standard matchmaking services company with plans to have corporate clients all across major cities in the United States of America, you should make plans to hire a competent Chief Executive Officer (you can occupy this role), Admin and Human Resources Manager, Professional Matchmakers and Counselors, Sales and Marketing Officer, Accounting Clerk, and Customer Services Executive. On the average, you will need a minimum of 5 to 10 key staff members to run a medium – scale but standard matchmaking services company.
The Business Services Process Involved in the Matchmaking Service
The business services process an average matchmaking services company adopts is dependent on the organization. It is the practice for matchmaking services company to provide platforms and professional services that has to do with matchmaking eligible singles.
The sales and marketing team go out there to market the services offered by the company, and once they are able to convince eligible bachelors and eligible spinsters, the contract documents are signed, logistics sorted out and part payment made.
After the matchmaking is successfully done, the full payment is made. This is applicable to a matchmaking services company that does not operate a functional dating services website where eligible singles sign – up as members, choose a status (gold membership, silver membership, bronze membership or diamond memberships et al). These categories of membership status come with different packages.
It is important to state that a matchmaking services company may decide to improvise or adopt any business process and structure that will guarantee them efficiency and flexibility; the above stated matchmaking services company business process is not cast on stone.
Starting a Matchmaking Services Business – The Marketing Plan
- Marketing ideas and Strategies
Generally, running a business requires that you should be proactive when it comes to marketing your goods or services. If you choose to launch a matchmaking services company, then you must go all out to employ strategies that will help you attract customers or else you will likely struggle with the business because there are well – known brands that determine the market direction for the dating services industry.
Eligible bachelors and eligible spinsters will hire your services if they know that they are going to get value for their money and of course find love/mates.
Your marketing strategy should center on reliability, swiftness, pricing, thoroughness, and above all excellent customer service. You should ensure that whenever your customers hire your services, they will get excellent service. The truth is that if you are able to put the above stated in place, you won’t struggle to retain your old customers and at the same time win over new customers.
Businesses these days are aware of the power of the internet which is why they will do all they can to maximize the internet (LinkedIn, Facebook, Blogs, videos/YouTube) to market their services. In other words, a larger percentage of your marketing effort will be directed to internet users.
These are some of the marketing ideas and strategies that you can adopt for your matchmaking services company;
- Introduce your matchmaking services company by sending introductory letters alongside your brochure to corporate organizations, small scale businesses, medium scale businesses, educational institutions, religious organizations, youth organizations and other key stake holders throughout the city where your matchmaking services company is located
- Advertise on the internet on blogs and forums, and also on social media like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn to get your message across
- Create a basic website for your business so as to give your business an online presence
- Directly market your services
- Engage in road shows in targeted business communities from time to time to promote your matchmaking services company
- Join local matchmaking services business associations for industry trends and tips
- Join local chambers of commerce and industry with the aim of marketing your services
- Advertise our business in community based newspapers, local TV and radio stations
- List your business on yellow pages ads (local directories)
- Encourage the use of word of mouth marketing (referrals)
Strategies to Boost Your Matchmaking Service Brand Awareness and Create Your Corporate Identity
If your intention of starting a matchmaking services company is to grow the business beyond the city where you are going to be operating from to become a national and international brand by opening offices all across key cities in the United States and franchising, then you must be ready to spend money on promotion and advertisement of your brand.
No matter the industry you belong to, the truth is that the market is dynamic and it requires consistent brand awareness and brand boosting cum promotion to continue to appeal to your target market. Here are the platforms you can leverage on to boost your brand awareness and create a corporate identity for your matchmaking services company;
- Place adverts on both print (newspapers and relationship magazines) and electronic media platforms
- Sponsor relevant community based events
- Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google + et al to promote your matchmaking services company
- Install your billboards in strategic locations all around your city or state
- Engage in roadshows from time to time in targeted business districts to create awareness of your matchmaking services company
- Distribute your fliers and handbills in target areas
- List your matchmaking services company in local directories
- Advertise your matchmaking services company in your official website and employ strategies that will help you pull traffic to the site
- Position our Flexi Banners at strategic positions in the location where your matchmaking services company is located
- Ensure that all your staff members wear your branded shirts and all your, vehicles, and vans are well branded with your company logo