Official Press Releases
, the world's largest free dating site with more
than 17 million members, has partnered with Iconic recording artist,
POF.com, the largest online
dating site in the USA, and world-class rapper, Flo Rida, are teaming
up to unveil his latest and hottest new video, 'Available'.
Second-ranked POF.com gets kudos
from an industry insider, when she says of its founder, "As the
owner of a free online dating service, I will be honest and say that
I have a lot of respect for all his hard efforts." One happy opinion
says, "There are plenty of regular guys on this website that are
not afraid to have a conversation with you." Reviewers say you
can view photos and make contacts for free, which they appreciate.
POF.com is now the leading dating
site in both North America (U.S.A. + Canada) and the United Kingdom.
Growing Pains" episode one received
a bronze award in the Video Comedy category. This is the first of the
three-part humorous video short series telling the story of a home business
start-up that quickly grows out of control. Additionally, PEER 1's POF.com
video customer story won three bronze awards in the Video categories
of Infomercial, How-To/Instructional and Comedy. The story focuses on
the POF.com business, as the largest free online dating site,
and illustrates how PEER 1 helped the business grow with the right infrastructure
and hosting solutions.
The latest comScore Media Metrix numbers
now rank the free dating site POF.com as the leading dating
site in both North America (U.S.A. + Canada) and the U.K.
The new "Worth Keeping Test"
from the free dating site POF.com is a 28-point questionnaire
designed to tell you whether to reel him or her in, or to cut bait.
PEER 1 Network Enterprises, a provider
of online IT infrastructure, is the recipient of four Telly Awards for
outstanding achievement with its original short online videos. The winning
videos, episode one of "Growing Pains" and the PEER 1 POF.com
customer testimonial, were selected among thousands of entries for their
humor and creativity.
PlentyofFish has been chosen to join
the Microsoft Startup Accelerator Program, designed to connect high-potential
startups to an extensive support network that provides access to Microsoft
people and programs, guidance on future directions, and support to accelerate
According to comScore World Metrix, POF.com
is now the #1 online dating site in UK as ranked by unique visits. POF.com
received 7,209,000 visits in the U.K. during the month of October, 2007.
Meanwhile, the combined total traffic of all the Meetic sites was 4,397,000,
and 2,100,000 for Match.com in the same period.
A study of over 50,000 women daters aged
thirty and over on POF.com from April 19th-25th, 2007 reveals
that 35% contacted men 5 or more years younger than themselves. Markus
Frind, Founder and CEO of PlentyofFish says, "It's not just men
who want to date a few years younger these days. Women in their thirties,
forties and older are pursuing younger men on dating sites.
On Friday 9th February PlentyofFish launched
a section devoted to member marriage testimonials. Within three hours,
ninety marriage success stories had been uploaded. Now, five days later
there are a total of 295 marriage success stories, complete with photos.
See http://www.POF.com/success.aspx. Industry analyst and watchdog,
Mark Brooks, of OnlinePersonalsWatch.com stated, "No other top
tier dating site has such an extensive marriage testimonials section."
PlentyofFish now gets 400,000 user logins a day and Markus continues
to operate it from his Vancouver apartment. The average age of U.S.
PlentyofFish members is 39. PlentyofFish is the most popular dating
site in Canada, the 6th most popular in the U.S.A. and the 6th most
popular in the U.K.
Userplane, a subsidiary of AOL, today
announced that PlentyofFish, the world's top free dating site, has joined
Userplane's new ad revenue-sharing program. PlentyofFish has more than
1 million daily visitors and is ranked by Hitwise as a top five dating
service in the U.S. Since 2004, its members have used Userplane Webmessenger(TM)
to initiate, on average, more than 100,000 IM sessions and exchange
millions of text and audio/video messages per day.
PlentyofFish is the second fastest growing
Internet site overall in Canada and the top Internet dating site in
Canada, according to Alexa.
A major paid dating site put out a press
release announcing their ten millionth member. Markus responds, "Yes,
they may have millions of members registered, but that's to their detriment.
We cull and clean out old profiles once they become inactive and unresponsive.
Most other sites prefer to keep the old profiles in place for excessive
periods. It's good for conversions, but bad for users. I won't do that
to my users. I don't have to, we're free." PlentyofFish surpassed
300,000 logins in a day in August 2006.
On July 22, 2006, Plentyoffish
will bring together over three thousand eligible singles for what will
be the largest speed dating event held under one roof. The record attempt
has been pre-approved by Guinness officials and will establish the first
such world record.
In 2004 POF.com was growing
in leaps and bounds and CEO and sole employee Markus Frind had a decision
to make: He could either hire hundreds of employees and convert to a
paid service like all his competitors, or develop an AI to run the site.
PlentyOfFish in the News
Worldwide, 1.2 billion people logged
on to dating sites in December, according to Comscore, and their subscriptions
and advertising have created a $1 billion business. The biggest free
site, Plentyoffish, is an internet phenomenon. Worldwide it has 19m
users and doubled in size last year. Last month Plentyoffish attracted
933,000 visitors in Britain alone, said Comscore. Founder Markus Frind
has said it makes $5m to $10m a year in advertising. No wonder everyone
wants to be in the online love industry. But online dating can also
be a heart-breaking business.
The more someone knows about you,
the less they want to date you. If you write a massive essay, they're
going to find something to dislike about that person. If you don't know
something, everyone assumes you're the same as them. Let everything
else come out during the dates." — Markus Frind, founder/CEO
Hitwise reports that visits to free
dating sites like those rose 19% over the previous year. But there's
always been the notion that love shouldn't be something you have to
purchase. Jeff Testerman, 28, who met his wife, Melissa, 26, on POF.com
in 2006, chose free services because "for me, spending money on
[online dating] signaled the fact that I was desperate."
But Kate Bilenki, director of love for
the popular free dating site POF.com, said most people she knows in their 20s or
30s wouldn't consider going to a traditional matchmaker. "Some
people may choose to use match-making services and use background checks,
but most will say, 'Why? I can do this myself,' " Bilenki said.
Online daters can avert most dangerous situations by exchanging a few
e-mails and talking on the phone before meeting, as well as letting
someone know they will be going on a date with a stranger on a particular
day, she said. While POF.com hasn't had many reports of problems with married
users, Bilenki noted that kind of deception happens in everyday meetings
One website Brooks works with is POF.com,
a free dating service headquartered in Vancouver. It introduced virtual
gifts in January. Last year the site ran a test to see if users would
pay $10 for one gift. At that price, the users weren't biting. So the
cost was lowered, but the staff discovered that as a gift's adorability
factor increased, so could the price. ``The cuter they are, the more
receptive they are,'' Kate Bilenki, Director of Love at POF.com.
``Teddy bears, hearts, bunnies, cute things like that.''
PlentyofFish is the world’s largest
free dating web service (although it now has a $5 “serious” option).
Still, for most of its existence it has made millions solely through
ads and a staff of fewer than five, led by the founder, Markus Frind.
Match.com, on the other hand, has 20+ million users, hundreds of millions
in revenue, and is owned by IAC, who also owns Chemistry.com, CollegeHumor,
Citysearch, Ask.com and Vimeo.
Internet dating is not only more common;
it’s also becoming the norm—no different than, say, meeting a partner
at a bar or party. Kate Bilenki, POF.com’s “director of love,” revealed that her
free site gets 1.8M hits from the Garden State on a monthly basis.
February 11th, 2010 - Online Dating
Explodes as Singles Rush to Find Love for Valentine's
one of the world's largest free dating websites, has seen a 60% year
over year increase in traffic in the lead up to 14 February. PEER 1
Hosting, which provides web servers for POF.com (http://www.POF.com/),
amongst other leading players, is urging dating website service providers
to get ready for the predicted unprecedented rise in online exchanges
between romance seekers before Valentine's Day. Websites without the
right hosting in place could be responsible for putting a freeze on
dating this week as sites struggle to cope with the additional demand.
February 11th, 2010 - A beginner's
guide to finding love online
POF.com is sort of the "plain
Jane" of dating sites. It takes a bare bones approach to meeting
singles. There are very few features and the design looks very amateur.
But with so few tricks and hurdles, it's very easy to get to the important
part – finding your next date. Once you've signed up, filled out a
profile and uploaded a photo, you can view those available in your area.
You can search for members from age 18 to 99, and within 100 miles of
you. A few dozen photos will show up gallery-style and you can click
on each one to view profiles.
February 10th, 2010 - Web of love
Use of free dating Web sites are growing.
Forbes reported that POF.com, a free dating site, placed No.
6 among all dating sites in June 2009, with 2.2 million viewers, nearly
double the previous year.
In the ‘You Get What You Pay For’
category, POF.com let you troll for dates free of charge. There
are plenty of prospects choose from, but members may not be as dedicated
nor the features as sophisticated as those of a pay-for site, says Julie
Spira, author of "The Perils of Online Dating."
If you're still a fan of online dating
but tired of the traditional offerings, you can try relatively new fish
in the sea, POF.com. Started in 2003 by young entrepreneur,
Markus Frind -- who still operates the service single-handedly from
his Vancouver apartment -- the site's biggest selling point lies in
its subscription fees: there are none. Just sign-up, create a simple
profile and you're literally free to browse one of the most popular
dating sites in Canada today, with 250,000 to 320,000 users logging
in daily. Other bonus features, unique to the online dating world, include
behavioral matchmaking and the ability to block messages from whole
groups of people. So, say goodbye to "HotPants", the 60-year-old
husband and father of two with a seemingly tireless libido.
The best dating
site I have come across in general
is called, plenty of fish you can access their homepage at www.POF.com.
What makes this site unique is unlike some other sites this one is all
about dating; it was created by a man that got feed up with paying for
the old sites and still not meeting the right people. Of course dating sites
are just like going out to meet someone, you want to find the right
scene for you and plenty off fish lets you narrow down the people who
can talk to you by letting you choose precise qualifications your potential
match must meet. Plenty of fish is also very age friendly.
Markus Frind got up around 9 this morning
- but hey, who’s keeping track? Things were quiet until the phone
rang at 10: workers arranging to swing by his Coal Harbour Condo to
see about the deck. While Frind waited for the tile guys, he did the
following: „Surfed the seb,“ he recalls. „Looked at different
things. Sat around. Had something to eat. Watched some TV.“ ...
Then of course there’s internet dating.
According to Nielsen Online, dating site Plenty Of Fish had a unique
UK audience ranking of 543 000 in October. That’s a lot of people
looking for love virtually. According to the site, over 18 000 000 dates
will take place worldwide between its members, and their chief executive
and founder, Markus Frind, says that 100 000 of those people will actually
get married. I find it hard to believe that that is not an inflated
figure to drive usage, however, it definitely gives some indication
of how the virtual world is affecting the real one.
I was struck by an example of just how
effective ugly websites can be this past week as I was browsing through
some web related news. I stumbled across the story of Plenty of Fish
(http://www.POF.com/). This is a very plain looking website
that offers a free online dating service much like Match.com (but without
the subscription fee).
“Once it starts getting a little bit
colder, people stay indoors a lot more — and, of course, are on their
computers — and would like to find someone to snuggle up and watch
a movie with,” says Kate Bilenki, spokesperson for local dating website
POF.com--at No. 6, boasting
2.2 million viewers, nearly double the amount a year ago--offers its
brokerage services for free and looks to turn a profit selling advertising.
"We’ve been growing so fast, I don’t even know what normal
is," says founder Markus Frind.
And Markus Frind, chief executive and
founder of Plenty of Fish, doesn't advertise about marriages, but says
his site brings about 100,000 marriages a year, a figure based in part
on "some study I found online."
I met many people who had good experiences
and formed relationships with people they met online. Markus Frind,
the CEO of Plentyoffish, a free dating website, says that one-third
of users form a relationship, a third do not and a third give up.
Without Google, I likely wouldn't have
found it, but with the search for "free dating sites" I found
POF.com. It looks like an amateur site, but I was pleasantly
surprised. You write your own profile, set your own filters, post your
pics and start looking. The best part is it's 100 percent FREE. (Which,
let's face it, is a huge relief during these tough times.) My first
time on there in 2006 I ended up meeting a guy and dating him for five
months (After two really terrible dates with two other guys I'd met
While 'marriage' and 'children' were
always popular key words, during this period last year POF.com
users mentioned the word 'job' in their profiles 5.5% of the time. This
year, that number has risen to 7.7%.
So, number one is Markus Frind, the founder
of the web site POF.com. POF.com is an online dating
site, one of the busiest and the most popular web sites in the world.
Markus Frind has built and currently maintains his web site himself.
Upon his statements in Markus' blog POF.com has 30 million
hits per day.
POF.com is one of the biggest free dating sites, recently
hitting a million users in one day.
Online-dating site PlentyofFish announced
plans to add a pay option aimed at customers who want to show that they’re
serious about meeting someone.
It's a 21st century fairy tale: Boy from
Hudson's Hope starts a website as a hobby, website starts getting clicks,
website earns boy $10 million a year in ad revenue. For Markus Frind,
the 30-year-old CEO of dating site POF.com, Sundays are low-key,
with lots of video games and hot tubbin' with girlfriend Annie Kanciar.
Though different people swear by certain
online dating websites, the number one free online dating website in
the U.S., U.K. and Canada is POF.com, run by CEO
Markus Frind. Since its 2003
launch, the site has grown by word of mouth to more than 13 million
page views each day. According to Frind, there's always a jump in site
traffic between the day after
Christmas through the Wednesday after Valentine's Day, as well as just
before Thanksgiving. Singles tend to join the site around family-related
holidays-anytime they're reminded of being single, Frind says.
In fact, POF, a free service, was
the second-most-visited online dating site last year, behind Singlesnet,
according to Hitwise, a Web site traffic monitoring service.
“During recessions people stay at home
more, they don’t want to pay and go to bars. They’re going online
to meet each other,” said Markus Frind, the chief executive of Plentyoffish,
a free site, where visits have increased 77 percent from December 2007
to December 2008, and 32 percent over the last three months.
I am a big POF fan. I even got the chance to say that to Marcus
Frind in person at the last iDate conference. As a
dating site user for about eight years -- and as someone who has created
a few dating sites myself -- I can say that when it comes to usability
and making a site sticky, PlentyOfFish is one of the best.
Debbie Slowey used to look for love on
paid online dating site Match.com. Then she discovered POF.com,
which provides similar services at no charge. "It was free, and
there were more [people] to choose from," says Slowey,
a 49-year-old Florida resident who got engaged to a chiropractor she
met on PlentyofFish last summer. "If it's free, why would I go
Markus Frind, CEO of the free dating
site POF.com, estimates 15 percent of the people in the United
States who are active on his site are members of
other, paid dating sites. About 900,000 people in the North America
and the United Kingdom log on each day.
Likewise, Vancouver-based dating site
Plenty of Fish enjoyed a 77-per-cent growth in visits from December,
2007, through December, 2008. About 900,000 people now log in daily.
Dating sites take care of the formalities:
Plenty of Fish, for example, forces aspiring members to list their marital
status, disclose whether they want children and how many times they
booze it up in a week, and finally to elucidate "what makes you
One of the success stories that has already
made it onto the site is that of Markus Frind of POF.com, a
30-year-old Vancouverite who launched a completely free dating website
five years ago and now collects ad revenues of $10 million a year.
Markus Frind works one hour a day and
brings in $10 million a year. How does he do it? He keeps things simple.
Developed in B.C., it is a North American
phenomenon. There are other sites that offer competition, but none of
the main contenders offer what Plenty of Fish offers. Where sites like
e-harmony advertise on TV and the web, they are pay to play
sites; some or all candidates pay a fee to join. Plenty of Fish is absolutely
One entrepreneur, Markus Frind, featured
on BizSpark DB, said not taking advantage of the program is "stupid"
because the software is free and the program can dramatically decrease
business costs. Frind runs the Canadian-based company POF.com,
a free online dating Web site.
Barton pointed to a free online dating
site - POF.com - "that is taking over the dating world
because it's free," he said. Match.com, eharmony.com and
other online dating sites charge handsomely for the same thing.
The poll also found that 16 per cent
of Canadians had found love online, with the younger demographic having
more success -- more than a quarter of respondents aged 18 to 34 had
been successful in seeking a mate via the web. Only seven per cent of
those aged 55 and older had started a relationship online, either by
way of e-mail or the Internet. But Markus Frind, founder of online dating
site POF.com, says the average age of his members is 37.
He works two hours a day and makes as
much as $10 million a year. That's why Markus Frind is already considered
a dot-com legend at the ripe old age of 29. Frind is the sole owner
of POF.com, one of the most popular online dating sites in
Canada, the U.S. and the U.K.
That's what accidental entrepreneur Markus
Frind found when he launched his free dating site, POF.com, in 2003 from his home in Vancouver, B.C. The
site, which began as a side project for the full-time web developer,
"grew by a few thousand people within the first few months,"
he says. After signing up with Google's AdSense to host ads on the site,
he reaped more than 1,000 Canadian dollars in the first month. A year
later, as love-hungry users flocked to his site, that monthly figure
jumped to more than 41,000 dollars.
It's this idea of control that is the
source of success for online dating sites, such as the Vancouver-based
Plenty of Fish website. Users create profiles for themselves and many
upload pictures to screen potential partners. The site, started in 2003
by 29-year-old Markus Frind, is virtually a dating haven for millions
of people around the world. According to Frind, the site rakes in a
net profit of $10 million a year in advertising. He says Ontario is
one of the biggest hot spots for Plenty of Fish users, and he claims
to be the No. 1 free site in Canada and the U.K.
Markus Frind, a 29-year-old Web entrepreneur,
developed software for his dating site, PlentyofFish, that operates
almost completely on autopilot, leaving Mr. Frind plenty of free time.
On average, he puts in about a 10-hour workweek. Mr. Frind operates
the business out of his apartment in Vancouver, British Columbia, and
has net profits of about $10 million a year.
January is the busiest and most profitable
month for online dating services. People start to re-evaluate their
lives and they all set their New Year's resolutions to find someone,"
said Markus Frind, founder of POF.com. POF.com, with
10,000 members in Washington state, projects a 30 % spike in traffic
Over the past few decades, we've seen
a growth of riches in a small slice of the population. Remarkable is
PlentyOfFish, an online dating service. Launched in Canada in 2003,
the site experienced explosive growth. By late 2006, some 300,000 people
were logging on to the service every day, and they were looking at about
600m pages a month. Only one person, Markus Frind, did this booming
Mr. Kawasaki said his “hero” is Markus
Frind, founder of POF.com, a free dating site. “And by the
way, he makes $5 million, $6 million a year with Google ads.”
Ron Jacobs of ARCast TV, a production
of the Microsoft Architecture Strategy Team, traveled to Vancouver,
British Columbia to interview Markus Frind, the founder of and one-man
show behind PlentyofFish.
The Canadian dating site making the biggest
splash at the moment is POF.com.
POF.com runs itself. A free
service, which was the 82nd most-visited site in the United States last
month, according to Hitwise. It ranks third in U.S., ahead of Match.com
July 6th, 2007 - Chicago Tribune
- Plenty Of Fish; Plenty Of Cash
Markus Frind, the 29-year old founder of Plenty of Fish, posted a check
recently showing the site earned nearly $1 million from Google AdSense
in a 2-month period. He gave it to all his employees. Markus is also
the only employee. The site recently jumped into the top 100 among all
US Websites. Markus says he's been ignored the last 4 years because
of ethnocentricity towards US sites.
Markus Frind, CEO of PlentyofFish is
on The Today Show this morning. One man, one (simple) site, #1 in Canada,
#1 in U.K. (for heterosexual dating) and #4 in U.S.A.
The wave of the future, perhaps: free
internet dating. POF.com, a free dating site that was launched
in 2003, now brings in 200k U.S users a day - and $5 million to $10
million in advertising a year according to Markus Frind, who runs
the site by himself. "I think all the paid sites are going to go
away, he says" Even Match.com is offering discounts to subscribers:
six months free, if you don't find Prince (or Princess) Charming in
the first six months. While the online dating
industry has been enormously successful so far.
The headquarters of what may be, on a
per-capita basis, the busiest, most profitable site on the entire World
Wide Web is on the 16th floor of a brand-new
Vancouver building with panoramic views of the nearby Canadian Rockies.
It happens to be the apartment of 28-year-old Markus Frind, the owner
and sole employee of POF.com,
a free online dating site and a model for the next generation of Web
The site ran 2 million page views per
hour at peak on April 11th, 40-50k concurrent users, on one IIS 6 server
at 65% capacity.
I'd like to see a law pass endorsing
arranged marriages. In the meantime, I'll study the personal ads, from
which to glean my recommendations. Here's an exception: according to
its ad, POF.com is a hundred percent, "put away your credit
card" free. Hopefuls upload a photo and post a witty blurb describing
themselves, then cross their fingers and wait. Some report amazing success.
One discovered her true love lived two streets down though they'd never
Those looking to play the field without
spending much cash should check out POF.com. In addition to
claiming to generate "300,000 relationships a year," the site
does not charge visitors for its
While it may be tough for the middle-aged
of Silicon Valley to find a perfect partner, it's never been easier
for the young and the restless in the high-tech industry to make a love
connection. A growing trove of Web sites enable search for those who
share feelings and fetishes. Check out the free online dating site POF.com.
Online dating is 10 years old. But the
days of paying to find a match may be a thing of the past if you believe
one couple who met online and started their own dating service.
At iDate 2007, vendors demonstrate ways
to meet, court, virtual date and even marry without ever leaving home.
...Plenty of Fish, with 400,000 hits a day, was created by Markus Frind,
who still runs it out of his apartment. He figured out people essentially
exaggerate on profile answers. He follows a more sensible creed: actions
speak louder than words. For example, Susie says she wants a solid,
stable man who earns $100,000-plus but keeps clicking on profiles of
muscle-bound bad boys. Plenty of Fish makes sure she meets plenty of
underemployed weightlifters, and some of the stable ones she ignores.
"People don't even realize we do this. They just know they are
getting results," said Frind.
Frind -- who operates PlentyofFish from
his downtown Vancouver apartment -- said he got an e-mail from the U.S.
Marshals Service at 8:16 p.m. Saturday. Someone watching Americas Most
Wanted had called to tell them they saw Bennett's picture on PlentyofFish.
Frind combed through the messages Bennett had sent to other users which
showed that Bennett had been sending messages to various women as he
travelled north from Arkansas. One woman had agreed to let Bennett stay
at her place. Frind checked that woman's profile and realized that both
Bennett and the woman had recently logged into PlentyofFish using the
same IP address -- meaning they were visiting his site using the same
computer. Frind was able to give police the phone numbers of other people
she had contacted. Frind spoke with U.S. marshals on Sunday, following
Bennett's arrest, and they thanked him for his help. "They told
me it was vital information," he said. "Basically they had
no idea where he was until I gave them all the numbers and the information."
Frind is not worried about the bad publicity Bennett's case may attract.
"When you're dealing with millions of people, it's bound to happen,"
he said. "It's like getting struck by lightning." He said
nothing like this has happened on the site before. Frind was never served
with a search warrant and voluntarily looked through Bennett and his
girlfriend's message traffic. He said he wouldn't hesitate to look at
a user's private messages again "if a crime has been committed
or someone is in danger." See discussion at PlentyofFish Forums
Last year 12% of newlyweds in the U.S.
met through the Internet. So we can assume a similar number of Canadians
did. Clearly there are plenty of fish available out there and tonight
we're profiling one of the biggest nets that catches them. She was HorseLady3,
a small town B.C. girl. He was HappyDaddy, a Vancouver chef whose search
for love took him on the Internet. "I needed an escape because
the separation from my marriage was kind of hard." It wasn't long
before the two found each other. "We hit it off and we haven't
looked back since." Markus Frind is the Vancouver web guru who
just happens to be one of the world's biggest matchmakers. His site,
POF.com brought together HorseLady3 and HappyDaddy and thousands
of other couples and he runs it all from his tiny Vancouver office.
"I am the largest website run by one person. I'm doing about 600
million pages a month." His website is part of a new wave of companies
making money on content generated not by them, but by users. The biggest
example is YouTube, the online video site that Google recently bought
for $1.65 billion. Like YouTube, Frind's site is free to use and is
bringing in a heap of cash. [Google Adsense] ads make him more then
$10,000 a day. "The tellers always look at me real funny. They're
like are you some kind of criminal? Why do you come in with a $900,000
check? I suppose if I went paid, this site could make hundreds of millions
but it just wouldn't be fun anymore and I would have to hire people
and I don't know, I just like what I'm doing right now."
October 1st, 2006 - Tricity News
- Canada: Online Dating Convenience
With work and kids and soccer practices
and doctor appointments, how and when do people find the time to connect
with one another? It's hard and that's why internet dating sites such
as plentyoffish are so popular with singles of all ages. "The internet
dating thing is huge - it's almost like a candy store!" a user
exclaims, noting she could converse with - even date - several men at
Supernova2006 was produced in concert
with the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of business. It
brings together such luminaries as Jonathan Schwartz, CEO of Sun and
Craig Newmark, of Craigslist. "There's a frenzy of startups,"
said Markus Frind, founder of POF.com, a free one-man online
dating service in Vancouver, British Columbia. "How many news readers
do you need, or calendars?" he asked, referring to online products
that many companies have bet their businesses on. Frind's online dating
service faces its own array of competition. But he insisted that he
is making a profit from online advertising -- as proof, he has posted
the image of a $900,000 check from Google on his blog -- and declared
"I'm probably the only company here making money."
According to Jupiter Research, more than
17 million people viewed online personals last year, and about 2.5 million
paid for them. (It's usually free to browse; the money kicks in when
you want to connect with someone.) There are several major sites to
choose from, including the aptly named POF.com.
Blogs on PlentyOfFish
Markus Frind is CEO of POF.com,
an online dating site. AdExchanger.com: What are your thoughts
about display advertising these days? Does it work? Everyone is
using the wrong metrics these days. What does CPM really mean in terms
of business? I think a far better metric that we use is monetization
per pixel. If a 728*90 ad has the same CTR and CPM as a ad a fraction
of the size why would you ever use bigger ad formats?
So there I was poking around my favorite
free online dating site, POF.com, when I stumble upon a little
known component of the Plenty of Fish dating site.
Using this concept, I decided to conduct
my own little experiment using the profiles on the Plenty of Fish
dating site, specifically the "Interests" section of the profile.
market share, Markus Frind, the
one-man workforce behind the free and extremely popular POF
dating site, is looking to create a few waves in his current business
The somewhat counterintuitive move is
IAC/Match.com’s answer to POF.com
, a popular free dating site
that was long run by one
out of his apartment (he now
has an office and a small team).
POF.com, the Canada-based dating
site that boasts over 900,000 active daily members and one solo developer,
is actually gaining market share and distancing itself from seasoned
competitors with full staffs and fancy websites
like Match.com and eHarmony.
One such person was a guy by the name
of Markus Frind. Markus is a regular kind of guy who looks really smart
and wears really cool glasses but when I saw his company name, I nearly
got weak at the knees. I started jumping up and down and screaming like
I was meeting a rock star. And to me, I was!!! My husband had just recently
read an article about Markus who is the owner and founder of the number
1 dating website in the world called POF.com
Before I stopped screaming and jumping up and down I quickly called
my husband and asked him the name of the website we were reading about
recently. When he announced it was POF.com, I promptly handed
the phone over to him and introduced the two programmers to one
December 16th, 2007 - CaryNC -
Business in Cary NC, Durham NC, Chapel Hill NC, and Raleigh NC business-
Plenty of fish raked in plenty of sales
POF is a social network, and these web
2.0 extravaganzas top the charts as some of the most vitiated sites
in the world. Some examples of popular social
networks include MySpace, Face book, Orkut (owned by Google), Friendster,
Yahoo 360 (owned by you guess it Yahoo!), and Hi5. What I thought was
very interesting about Mr. Frind’s network is that
he was competing in an established and also a very very very competitive
market. However, he innovated and added a rare flare that wasn’t found,
and that is simple, he made it FREE.
Kawasaki rounded up four people who were
at the right place with the right idea at the right time. By making
money with virtually solo operations, they are the lucky ones who make
it look so easy.
This is incredible! Look at this. PlentyofFish
has beaten MSN and Facebook on the Compete.com Top Ten U.S websites
ranking (based on the parameters below - not just traffic). Not just
that - look at the other sites on this list - Pogo - a games site, followed
by two gay date sites (ha ha) and a site dedicated to scribblers. And
the avatar playground for kids GaiaonLine is performing
well too. Markus Frind has this to say about his site's listing.
PlentyOfFish is the success that it is
because of several converging Web trends. Servers and server software
have become simple and reliable enough that they can run on their own,
without a lot of babysitting. What's more, a remarkably sophisticated
economic infrastructure now exists that allows busy Web sites to make
lots of money, certainly enough for one person to live very well.
I caught up with Markus today via email
and asked how the business is doing now. He didn't want to get specific
about earnings, but he said that POF will earn $10 Million + next year
(which puts it at around $30k per day).
While much larger pay sites, such as
Match.com or Eharmony.com are setting up hundreds of servers, paying
hundreds of staff and forcing people to pay at minimum $30.00/month,
POF.com has done all of this for FREE, with no staff and a
lot of help from Google Adsense. Truly a prime example of success in
this Web 2.0 world.
17 Tips on Building a Lucrative Online
Business or Website - The quoted text is extracted from some of Markus’s
blog posts as well as interviews over the past few years. All of the
specific references are left at the bottom of the post and do visit
them to read more, if you’re interested.
He strikes me as the kind of “normal
guy” who is just very humble about what he’s done. What has he done?
He launched POF in 2003. Today it earns north of $5 million a year,
600-700k relationships started (including my current one … I’m not
just a blogger I (was) a client!) and it’s all still run out of his
These days, 20+ employees and millions
of capital can be more of an impediment than an advantage - especially
if you count the happiness factor. I count Markus as one the few who
are showing us the business models of the future.
PlentyofFish is another one of those
quiet Canadian online success stories - perhaps because its owner, Markus
Frind, is far from a PR-seeking machine and perhaps because it’s a
business focused on the quasi-shady world of online dating.
As humans one of our biggest weaknesses
is becoming obsessed with what is not important. We spend 90% of our
time on that little 5% — and that is why so many of us fail. PlentyofFish
is an example of what happens when someone understands that its not
the fancy design that brings in visitors, its something else. He understands
that search engine traffic is important, but its even more important
to have visitors that come back to your site again and again.
On Saturday 10th February I attended
Community Next ( communitynext.com) in Silicon Valley. From the final
panel: PlentyofFish contrasted executive opinion on the final panel
on two points. Markus believes that advertising is actually very important
in building an online community. Other speakers (HororNot, Fark, Hi5,
Slide, Suicide Girls) did not. Markus stated that 'passion' is not as
important as 'cold hard analytics skills.' Other speakers believed that
passion for the site was their primary success factor.
Jobster, which has raised nearly $50
million in venture capital, is making a dramatic business model shift
starting tonight, by making all job listings free (and much more). Their
goal is to do what PlentyOfFish is doing to Match.com.
Ranking online dating sites purely on
visitor traffic is flawed; membership is a prerequisite to use the services,
and member activity is the foundation of successful matchmaking. Member
visits reveal actual engagement. POF.com showed that free services
can be successful; 9th in terms of visitors, the site leapt to 5th in
member interaction. More importantly, it was one of 5 sites with more
than 10 million member visits, putting it in a class with much higher
trafficked sites and besting its next competitor by a multiple of 2x.
Markus happened to stay in Saturday night
and caught the email from the US Marshals and was able to quickly turn
it around. What might have taken hours at some dating sites, took minutes...and
the bad guy got nailed. Nice! Well done Markus.
Markus Frind is a one-man wrecking machine.
He has single-handedly disrupted the world of online dating with a super-easy-to-use,
free dating site - PlentyOfFish. PlentyOfFish averages 20 million page
views per day or 600 million per month. With Google Adsense running
on the site, Frind averages approximately $10,000 a day in revenue from
ads alone. Markus lives in Burnaby (a suburb of Vancouver), is in his
late 20s and enjoying life. He has no intention of maximizing his ad
dollars as he is comfortable where he stands.
Markus Frind may be Canada's most successful
Internet entrepreneur, although he doesn't have a huge profile or an
appetite to build one. He runs POF.com, one of the world's
most success online dating services.
The following is a list of the Internet's
eight biggest Google AdSense publishers. This is a list of individual
site owners. Big corporate AdSense publishers like AOL are excluded.
#1: Markus Frind: POF.com
POF.com is the biggest free dating site on the Internet
Markus Frind, the founder and sole proprietor
of the massively successful online dating site Plenty of Fish, has an
interesting theory in one of his recent posts. The post is mostly about
how Markus's site ranks compared to other international dating sites
(answer: number three), but the interesting part for me was right at
the end, where Markus says that searches for info on new homes correlates
extremely well with real economic data such as housing stats. I think
he is on the right track, and that search data will become (is becoming)
an ever more important indicator of consumer behaviour, or potential
How many CEOs of online dating networks
can you name who have done advanced math research that led to someone
getting the Field's Medal — often called the Nobel Prize of mathematics?
I can think of one: my friend Markus Frind, the guy behind POF.com,
one of the top dating sites in the world. Markus recently posted a description
of how he came up with an algorithm that isolated 23 prime numbers in
succession for the first time, and how that research was in turn cited
by Terence Tao in a paper he did on prime numbers, a paper that helped
contribute to him winning the Fields Medal.
Mark Brooks: Plentyoffish is free and
has snuck up on the Canadian market and has now established itself in
the American market. It's #5 on the Hitwise USA rankings for May 2006,
Markus Frind: Plentyoffish is driven
by the community. There are one million people who have moderating powers
in the Plentyoffish forum and several thousand people attending parties
all over the country every week. And it's all organized and done by
users. So unlike the paid sites, Plentyoffish is run by the users.
What you say you want and what you actually
want are two different things. It hardly ever corresponds on a dating
site. So I just track a user and see what they're actually doing on
the site and then show them matches based on their actual surfing preferences.
My site is deceptively simple but no one knows just how complex it is
under the surface.
Markus Frind rocked the Internet world
this week when he posted a photo of his latest Google AdSense check
for nearly $1 million CAD.
Markus Frind: I created the first real
free dating and the first one that actually worked. Just like Google
created the first real search engine that worked.
Markus Frind claims he's earning $10,000
per day from Google Adsense from his dating website, POF.com.
External data sources do seem to back him up. Markus is basically a
one-man band running a website that, by his latest traffic figures,
is two and a half times bigger than digg.com. Digg.com gets 200 Million
page views per month, but Markus says plentyoffish gets 500 Million:
"It is around 2 hours of work a day and that stays steady because
as the site grows I automate more and more. Some of that work I get
my girlfriend to help me with, she is far more diplomatic when answering
mean emails. From what I can tell i should have no problem running it
by myself even if it gets to 3 times its current size."
On the hardware side, Markus gave me
these details: "I have 4 servers.
1. DB server
2. Web server, handles 1 million pageviews an hour at peak. No static
pages at all, way to slow. All pages are Gzipped on the fly.
3. Mail Server. Handles 1 million emails/day and also has a web server
that handles a Instant messenger. That translates to 4-5 million polling
pageviews/hour at peak.
4. Image server, Like all major sites it serves images to a massive
content distribution system/cache.
5. Outbound traffic is 70 to 100mb/sec If it was uncompressed it would
probably run at 140mb/sec"
Use function over form to build an emotional
connection with users. Blend ads into content, No flashing crap, make
the site useful. Basically all those things that everyone knows you
are supposed to do, but very few people actually do. There is no magic
bullet, but you should always test new designs or new text to get the
result that you want.
For the most part the [online dating]
industry wants to ignore the fact i exist and they are just hoping that
I will go away, so they don't have to explain to investors why profits
are vanishing. I think in the future paid dating will account for 5%
to 20% of the overall online dating market. Currently 68% of my membership
in the United states has paid for a dating site in the past, draw what
conclusions you will.
At the Northern Voice conference I met
Markus Frind, founder of POF.com. He's Google's #1 Adsense
user in Canada. His site is pulling in more than $10,000 per day from
Google, he told me, and has millions of passionate users. Tens of millions
of page views EVERY DAY. What's the secret to his success? Ugly design.
I call it "anti-marketing design." He says that sites that
have ugly designs are well known to pull more revenue. Google. Is it
pretty? No. Craig's List? Pretty? No. MySpace? Pretty? No.
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