Dating apps have become an integral part of modern relationships, but they are often plagued by superficiality and the overwhelming paradox of choice. Melissa Mullen, the founder of Smile, believes that injecting humor into the online dating industry can combat these issues. With her innovative app, profile pictures remain blurred until a few messages have been exchanged, and users are limited to three matches at a time. By prioritizing meaningful connections over endless swiping, Smile aims to change the game.
A Humor-Centric Approach
Melissa Mullen’s inspiration for Smile came from a disappointing date with a professional comedian she met on Tinder. Despite valuing humor in relationships, Mullen found that their jokes didn’t resonate with her. This experience led her to realize that humor is subjective, and what might be funny to one person may not be funny to another. With this insight, her algorithm was developed to match individuals based on their shared sense of humor rather than physical appearance.
The prevalence of swiping through countless profiles can lead to missed connections. Mullen’s own experiences made her question the validity of judging potential partners solely based on their looks. She discovered that successful relationships often shared a common thread of laughter, even if initial attraction was absent. Jeffrey A. Hall, a professor at the University of Kansas and an adviser for Smile, highlights the importance of a shared sense of humor as a strong predictor of long-term compatibility.
Redefining Online Dating
Smile addresses the key stressors associated with online dating. Instead of feeling judged or spending hours filling out personality inventories, users engage in social media-like scrolling. By embracing the scrolling habits of younger generations, Smile creates a more relaxed and enjoyable dating experience.
Smile Events: Building Excitement
Leading up to the June 1 launch, Smile is hosting various events throughout the city. These events aim to drive more users to join the app’s waitlist, which already boasts over 3,000 sign-ups. Pop-ups at local colleges and Smile events at popular comedy nights create buzz and anticipation for the app’s official release.
Challenging the Status Quo
The online dating industry is dominated by major players like Tinder, Hinge, and OkCupid, all owned by Match Group. However, services like Smile, which has already raised close to half a million dollars in angel investments, provide a refreshing alternative. While Mullen is open to entertaining offers, she envisions Smile becoming a major player in the industry, and she intends to run it for the long haul.
Join Smile Today
Experience the transformative power of laughter in your quest for love. Join the waitlist for Smile today and get early access to the app on May 1. Discover a dating app that celebrates humor and fosters genuine connections. Don’t miss out on the chance to be a part of the next big thing in online dating.