The Biggest Online Dating Success Story Of 2011:

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As of November 2011, Badoo had:

  • 130,000,000+ current users
  • Members in 180 countries
  • 127,503 new users per day
  • 1,411,665 photos and videos uploaded daily

Add all that together and what do you get? The biggest online dating success story of 2011.

Badoo is taking the world by storm according to TechCrunch. It's a truly global, multi-lingual phenomenon, with location-based social networking functionality that is bringing people together to chat and flirt all around the world. In fact, if Badoo was just a site for social networking, it would be the 4th largest in the world. But Badoo is so much more.

Knowing that each user's needs are different, Badoo takes on different roles in different countries. In the UK, it's primarily used for casual dating. In the Czech Republic, it's a marriage site. In Indonesia, it's a safe space for burqa-clad women to explore self-expression. The site has been used for everything from making friends to throwing parties. Thanks to that ability to be so many different things to so many different people, Badoo now brings in $100 million per year in revenue.

Their success story began in 2006 when, rather than seeing Facebook as competition, Badoo set out to fill a gap that Facebook had left in the market: helping strangers connect. Badoo then offered all of it's core functionality for free, giving users a full experience without the big price tag that comes along with many traditional dating sites. For those who want even more out of the site, paid subscriptions are available that unlock special features like the ability to see who has viewed your profile. A system of micropayments is also in place to help users improve their search rankings and become more visible.

Jessica Powell, Chief Marketing Officer of Badoo, believes that the site's success stems from its flexibility. Unlike sites that are specifically designed for dating, Badoo creates a space in which users can connect in any way they want. It's more like real life, she says, when "meeting new people" can be anything from being introduced to a friend of a friend, to saying "hi" to a stranger at a bar, to flirting, to going on a date. Badoo reflects the offline world because people want to meet real people, not pages of meaningless data.

The site's strategy of "real world meets cyberspace" seems to be working - Powell says that 50% of the conversations on Badoo now lead to an offline meetup, and at the rate Badoo is going, that number is only going to increase.

For even more information about this dating service you can read our review.