When building the REDDI platform, I really wanted to address many of the common issues which have caused our dating experience to become, erm, should I say, rather less fun than it used to be.
The 'Paradox of Choice' and 'Analysis Paralysis', are to blame - as well as the use of these platforms as a 'product'. Dating apps should, of course be there to find you a partner; not to give you instant validation until your emotions no longer feel they need the boost. At the very core of a dating app should be a date, and as such they should be used for the sole reason of finding someone to date for the longer term - potentially leading to something more serious. Unless of course, you merely want to hookup - and there are many apps out there that cater for such requirements.
However, if you are looking for something more 'casual' it is worth noting (to avoid disappointment), that it's a myth that people use dating apps to 'hook up'. Most often, people spend more time texting, rather than actually meeting and having sex. In fact, people often use dating app to gain confidence. And for those that do go on dates, having sex isn't the number one 'first date' goal. So, despite the widely talked about hookup culture, believe it or not, we've actually seen a rise in the amount of millennials not having sex. In the age group of 20 to 24 for example, the number of people not having sex has doubled over the last 30 years! A trend which we are now also seeing across all age groups.
So, what is going on? Well....most people are actually looking for less sex - and more love.
However (and this is a good thing, of course), I do truly believe that choice is important. Many dating apps are solely there for hookups and casual fun, but others blur the lines somewhat with the promise of a relationship - therefore leading us to spend many a wasted hour scrolling quite frankly through a lot of unsuitable matches. This can result in lots of 'messaging' and not so much 'dating'. I like to think of these as more like introduction apps. Worse still, we can often end up dating people and getting into relationships with the wrong people - falling in love with some fantasy potential, rather than the real-life person right in front of you. [Sidenote here: no one changes people.]
As far as REDDI is concerned, we are proudly a relationship app. We cannot of course call ourselves that - because our audience would get confused, and the online search engines would say 'NO, NO, NO'! So.... we are currently a dating app for those looking for something with more substance - a healthy relationship in the first instance (romantic or platonic) and hopefully, at some point children in the future (or sooner if that is what you both want).
Another sidenote here: we are not a 'baby making' app. Children may be what we all have in common, but that ranges from 'yes, I'd like them at some point' to 'yes - I'd like some now' - the difference being that everyone is tired of casual and 'situationships' and they are now looking for their last BIG relationship and in the long-term, a family. We also cover platonic relationships which lead to children, and those who are already parents. As an app we cover creating, merging, and joining families - at various stages of life.
Now, during our time researching the market - the problems, and the difficulties people were faced with - I would hear time and time again about how people were tired of being ghosted, or matched with people who would never interact etc. Many of these issues of course, stem from the system behind the app: if you're not paying for the service for example, they're less likely to bring you matches, or people with which you are compatible.
Additionally, many apps have numerous fake profiles, and if you are given an unlimited amount of people to choose from, most people choose without thinking, or without any clear intention. Merely (very probably, in fact) just to get either some form of validation, or just because they may have found you semi-attractive. Then, once faced with multiple matches, they probably either close the app and forget about you, or text one of those matches with something brief and uninspiring like 'Hi, how are you?'.
Of course, while the platform should shoulder some blame here, it is also the responsibility of the user to be more conscious in their own behaviour when it comes to using a dating app. Since launching, I have received emails from people wondering why they are not getting matches, or 'many matches', or how having only a small number of people per day to choose from is limiting.... Now, my advice to you, if you have just started to use REDDI, is to think about why we have implemented many of the different features, and what could possibly be the reason? But also to think about your own dating behaviour - is it healthy?
As a Mental Health Practitioner, I understand human behaviour - and the psychological changes that have occurred over time whilst using dating apps. This isn't just the fault of the 'swipe' either, but rather, the fact that modern day society have come to believe that they can have whatever we want, whenever we want it, however we want it. Which of course, is not the truth at all. But the expectation is there. This often makes us more demanding and less tolerant - finding ourselves getting into patterns of behaviour which are far from helpful.
When it comes to dating apps, we've become accustomed to 'many' likes and matches all at once - yet in the real world, finding someone who we like (and who also likes us) often takes a little more time. We've become addicted to the validation apps can prompt - and the sadness we experience afterwards is nothing more than the chronic dissatisfaction of our pleasure receptor - which sadly has no inhibitor. I often talk about dopamine dependency in my training - reward (or a swipe) - and there will never be enough matches to fulfill this need, believe me.
So, if you've made the decision to dating more intentionally, I also encourage you to get your head out of what has been before. You may have been on numerous dating apps in the past, but when it comes to REDDI - when matching for serious relationships - think of the journey as more of a match making experience - where quality is more important that quantity.
If you want lots of 'matches' in your inbox on a daily basis, who you may end up not even chatting too, then we're probably not the app for you - it's as simple as that. BUT, if you'd rather date with more purposeful intention, you understand that dating isn't a game, and you want to spend your time more wisely. Apply to join us, we'd loved to help you make the greatest decision you will ever make much easier.
Until next time,
Founder | REDDI