If you’ve ever had a dry spell in your dating history, chances are that at some point your mind turned to your friends – after all, you know they already like you and there’s no need for small talk, so… why not? If it works out, it could be great! But of course, if things don’t pan out, you risk changing (or even ending) your friendship by taking things to the next level.
There must, you’re thinking, be another way.
There is. It’s called ‘Friends With Benefits’. You and a pal get all the perks of a physical relationship with none of the complications that come with emotional ties. But how do you broach the subject? And how do you ensure that your involvement stays at the right level? Most of these arrangements, quite sensibly, have a set of rules that both parties agree to, to make sure there are no misunderstandings along the way. And so, with our tongues planted firmly in our cheeks, we’ve created the Twoo ‘Friends with Benefits’ Contract to make things easy for you.
Simply enter your name and the name of the friend whose (ahem) benefits you’d like to (ahem) receive, and your contract is ready to go – click to share it on your social network of choice, and make your arrangement official today!
Good luck and have fun!
So, you might have noticed that there’s some kind of football tournament going on at the moment. Depending on which team you support, you might have already experienced all the excitement, tension, disappointment and misery that you can handle. For Twoo HQ, located in Belgium, the World Cup has so far been a stirring success, with our last match against the US being among the best games we’ve seen so far. In an attempt to stop us biting our nails ahead of the next game against (gulp) Argentina, we thought we’d blow off some steam by looking into how the World Cup is affecting the people on our site.
We want our users to enjoy their online experience to the utmost, and we’re always looking for ways to connect them together, carefully checking our statistics to make sure that we’re able to advise Twoo members on when they’ll have the best chance of finding an online match. Why should the World Cup be any different? So, taking a couple of Belgium games as our examples, we thought we’d see what patterns (if any) we could find so that you don’t miss out!
Belgium 2 – 1 Algeria
Our opening game showed a trend that has continued throughout the tournament – in general, peak use of Twoo comes during half-time, which is exactly what you’d expect to find. While Belgian users dropped back offline once the second half had begun, only gradually returning to normal levels after the game had finished (presumably too busy out celebrating), it’s interesting to note the behaviour of our Algerian members: they started to come back online throughout the second half, perhaps reflecting a growing lack of interest as the game slipped out of their hands.
There were also noticeable differences between how Belgian men and women used the site during the match. Men were clearly more invested in the game, as shown by the sharp drops during the periods of play. Women, however, seemed to slowly drift away from Twoo during the first half, becoming much more invested in the game as it went on – which suggests that our female users maybe weren’t prepared to watch the full 90 minutes, but became more involved as the final result approached.
Belgium 1 – 0 South Korea
Next, we took a look at the third group match between Belgium and South Korea. By this point in the tournament, both men and women in Belgium were watching the game, showing a rise in female interest since the Algeria match. And the respective countries? Well, the trend for activity on Twoo to spike during half-time continued in both lands. As with the Algerian game, South Koreans bounced back online before the match was over, while Belgian users took over an hour to return to the site (yet more celebrating?).
This leads us rather neatly to our conclusions: what opportunities does the World Cup present for Twoo members?
First things first: half-time is the perfect time to connect with other users the world over (although of course you’ll need to bear in mind their nationality to see how happy or sad they’ll be!), as it’s the time during the game that the most people are logging on. Also, it’s pretty clear that if your team is losing, you’re likely to find more and more of your countrymen/women sharing their sorrow on Twoo as the game goes on – and it would be nice to think that something good can come out of even the worst result… so maybe think about getting online and offering a shoulder to cry on!
Clearly neither sex needs to be too worried about talking about football during the tournament, although women may be less interested than men. And it makes sense to check people’s level of interest for another reason – between 20% and 30% of our users told us that they wouldn’t be watching any of the World Cup at all. However, our male members should consider this: being online on Twoo during the first half of a game means that you’ll be one of a select handful of men who are actually available to chat – allowing you to massively improve your chances of being noticed in our usually bustling community!
Finally, whether your team is still in the running or not, we wish you the very best during this summer of sporting excellence. Just remember, not all goals revolve around a pitch!
You’d think that being an in-demand beauty queen would mean that you’d have your pick of the world’s men, right? Think again. Take the case of Tamara Cserháti, Miss World Hungary 2012, who ended a five-year relationship last year and then spent the next eight months trapped in singledom. With a schedule planned out months in advance, and jobs both in Hungary and abroad, she found herself in the curious position of being a famed beauty with no time to meet new people. Finally, she turned to the internet to widen her social network after a friend recommended Twoo. Having never used a social site before, Tamara wanted the chance to get to know potential matches in a safe, mobile environment – which, as you’ll know by now, is exactly what we provide!
Speaking to us back in February, Tamara explained: “It may sound strange that as a beauty queen I have registered on a site to meet new people, but with such a fast-paced lifestyle this is my best chance to find a man who suits me. I only have a little free time, so I am rarely able to go out.”
The beauty queen had very definite ideas about her priorities when searching for a partner on Twoo: “I’m looking for someone with a good sense of humour, who can make me laugh but is smart at the same time, so we can talk about everything. He should be trustworthy under all circumstances, so that I can feel safe with him. Based on my experiences, I get along best with calm, even-tempered men, so this is also an important aspect of my search. I’m actively using the site now, so I’ve already got a lot of messages, but of course I’m also browsing profiles. I didn’t know that so many handsome men were single!”
So, how did Tamara get on? We checked in with our lovely celebrity user a month later, and found that she had just been on her first date in over half a year. “I remember the weekend when I was browsing the site and this guy dropped me a message. I checked his photos and because I found him interesting, I replied to him immediately. Later it developed into a several-hour-long conversation and as we do not believe in chatting exclusively online, we decided to meet in person,” she told us.
The lucky gentleman in question was Krisztián, a salesman who had ended his own five-year relationship a couple of months before. With this common ground between them, the two quickly hit it off, leading to a first date at a bowling alley. Between matches, the couple followed up on their online conversations.
After some initial worry that they wouldn’t have chemistry in real life, Tamara was pleased to find that Krisztián was every bit the man he had appeared to be – funny, confident and gentle. “I was a little bit stressed at the beginning,” Tamara explained, “but his humour made me feel more comfortable. I think we made a good decision to go bowling instead of to a café – it was more direct.”
But what about the future? Well, we’re happy to report that both Tamara and Krisztián hoped to meet up again. “We won’t be disappointed if it doesn’t turn out to be true love, though”, Tamara said. “Even if it develops into a good friendship, it was worth registering on Twoo!”
With such celebrity endorsements still ringing in our ears, we hope that you’ll follow the example that Tamara and Krisztián have provided – just get chatting and see where it leads. And however you use Twoo, remember to have fun!
Social discovery site Twoo.com is celebrating its third birthday this week. In these few years it has experienced dramatic growth. What started off as a small start-up in Ghent, Belgium has evolved into a company that is active in over 200 countries and 38 languages. And its ambitions remain sky-high.
Twoo.com was launched in April 2011. The idea was to create a social network where people can get to know each other in a fun, relaxed way and in a safe environment. Users can like each other based on photos and preferences. If two people like each other, they are a match.
11.9 million unique visitors
The concept proved to be an instant hit, as only 18 months after its launch Twoo became the number 1 site in the world in its category (Personals, comScore December 2012). “What sets Twoo apart from other social discovery sites is that it’s free to use, it uses innovative matchmaking algorithms and has an enormous number of active and genuine members. In January, for example, 11.9 million people logged in to Twoo. However, that is no reason to relax our efforts. We closely follow the latest trends and update the site every week, ranging from minor details to exciting new features. Moreover, we listen carefully to our users’ feedback to finetune Twoo continuously.”, CEO Lorenz Bogaert explains.
Twoo goes global
Twoo.com is currently available in 38 languages and operates in over 200 countries, but the goal is to continue to grow, especially internationally. “We are very proud to have reached the milestone of 50 million users. The hard work of our team to create an attractive and safe platform where people can meet each other freely is paying off. On to the next 50 million!”, Lorenz Bogaert concludes.
Last Christmas – along with all the perfume, books, clothes, toys and media devices – there were a lot of good intentions under the tree. Several months later, we thought the time was right to poll more than 2,000 of our Belgian users about their new year’s resolutions for 2014. Did they stick to them? Are they healthier, better people? Or have they abandoned their good intentions and gone back to their bad habits? Let’s dig into their answers and find out.
Best laid plans…
38% of Belgians surveyed claimed that they had made at least some plans for the new year. The holiday season might be the traditional time for giving and sharing, but when it comes to self-improvement, 37% of people said that they thought of themselves first. And singles (38%) made more resolutions than people in a relationship (35%), which perhaps suggests that if you’re settled down you’re less motivated to change. Just remember not to get stuck in a rut, people!
Popular resolutions for 2014 included taking more exercise (24%), losing weight (13%) and giving up smoking (11%). Socialising also got a boost in the new year, with 22% of our Belgian users hoping to make new friends and go out more. And of those with room in their hearts for further ambition, 9% stated that they wanted to spend more time with their families, while 6% were angling for a new job or a promotion this year. All lofty goals…
A trouble shared is a trouble halved?
But how did they fare? Surprisingly, women took the lead in ditching their resolutions, with just 10% staying the course compared to 19% of men. As these figures show when taken together, very few of our Belgian friends actually followed through with their plans over the long-term. So, how can you improve your odds?
Our results show that sharing your intentions may be the key to success, helping to keep you honest when you might otherwise be tempted to quit. Many of our Belgian respondents opted to do just that, with 38% involving their friends and 32% relying on their partners. There’s clearly nothing so challenging that a support group can’t help you with it!
The wisdom of age
You also stand a better chance of sticking to your guns as you mature. Perseverance apparently comes with age, as the over-50s proved themselves the most unwavering (16%). This may reflect the fact that age brings perspective – the older you are, the more realistic your intentions become (or maybe it’s just stubbornness!). Of course, another surefire method of sticking to your goals is to cheat when setting them; one in three of our Belgian respondents shamelessly admitted to choosing easy resolutions that they knew they could keep!
Whatever you decided to change last New Year’s Eve, we hope that our survey will give you some ideas for making sure you live up to your resolutions of 2014. And if you need a friend to use as a crutch, why not check out people in your neighbourhood on Twoo? With over 8,000 matches made every single day, it’s the fun and easy way to get to know new pals. So you’ll have even less excuse to fail next year. Right? Right.
Have fun and stay strong,
Every now and then, we like to bring you news of trends we’ve spotted among Twoo users, giving you a glimpse into the psyches of potential new friends from around the world. This time around, we thought we’d focus on the Netherlands.
Dutch use of social discovery sites like Twoo appears to be changing, and meeting new people in person is becoming increasingly important. In a recent study, we found that Holland leads the way in Western Europe when it comes to meeting online contacts in real life, with two-thirds of Dutch respondents having transferred their friendships from their devices to the outside world. Compare this to some of the other countries in our survey – Belgium (60%), France (51%), Germany (46%) – and it becomes clear that the Dutch are at the forefront of modern relationships. And they’re light years ahead of the UK, where only 26% were willing to take the plunge and move online friendships offline.
So, the Dutch are meeting new people IRL… but how? And where? What’s the secret to successfully building on the connections you’ve made online?
Firstly, it’s not always about dating! 44% of our Dutch members claimed that they were looking for friendship, ahead of 34% who were seeking romance with a potential partner. The main reason given for meeting at all was a previous enjoyable online chat.
Once you’ve decided you want to meet, it’s time to choose a place. Our friends in the Netherlands definitely favour having fun in a casual way. 66% picked a bar or a pub as their venue of choice – but not just to calm their jangled nerves with booze; in fact, more than half said they’d opt for a cup of coffee. Prefer the outdoors? Well, if you’re into physical exercise, perhaps Holland is the place for you, as taking a walk came in as the surprise third favourite encounter. The conclusion seems to be that the Dutch are waving goodbye to traditional (and formal) meeting places in favour of a more laid-back approach.
As Lien Louwagie, Community Director at Twoo, explains: “Every month, more than 140,000 Dutch people use Twoo to expand their social network, and this number continues to grow. The Dutch are very open in their online contact – they love to have fun and get to know people in an easy way.” But don’t just take her word for it – the stats back her up! 96% of our Dutch users said that they’d had a fun time during their first encounter with a Twoo friend. Even better, 63% met up with their new friend again, and almost half of our Dutch pals met with more than one person. One in five even said that they’d met more than three friends through Twoo.
So if you want a high success rate when moving your friendships from the digital world to real life, it all starts with making a strong connection on Twoo.
According to a survey answered by more than half a million of our international users, we’ve found that the Dutch are the most strongly attached to their mobile phones, with a third (34%) of them claiming that they definitely couldn’t live without their devices. This puts the Netherlands at the top of the countries surveyed, ahead of Germany (13%), Spain (19%), France (20%) and the US (22%). Around a third of these high-tech lowlanders would choose to take a phone or a laptop to a desert island, instead of personal photos and letters (20%), or a pen and football(6%).
Twoo is used as a meeting place by a growing number of people in Holland – more than 500,000 have registered on the site since we launched in 2011. Around 10,000 of our Dutch friends responded to our questions about their mobile use, and only 3% of them said that they could imagine life without a cell phone.
The prominence of the phone in Dutch daily life is also evident in the stats on their surfing behaviour on Twoo. 44% of the 150,000 users who sign in each month are making new connections using their smartphones. This is significantly more than the global average of 33%.
As Twoo’s Community Director, Lien Louwagie, explains: “The Dutch are proven leaders in the use of mobile technology. We’ve already released apps for the iPhone, Android and Windows phones, and we’ve recently introduced apps for iPad and Android tablets for our tech-savvy users from the Netherlands. Mobile devices are going to be even more important in the future for staying in touch, and the Dutch seem to be ready for that progress!”
On 19 November 2013, Twoo HQ joined the world in celebrating International Men’s Day. And what better time than Men’s Day to put our male users under the spotlight and investigate what a man is – or should be – in today’s world. We began our research by asking our female users for their definition of the ideal man… and let’s cut to the chase: gentlemen, you really don’t need to look like Brad Pitt or David Beckham to wow the ladies. Clearly, it can’t hurt – but there are more important factors to take into consideration than a pretty face and a stack of cash.
Some body to love
While it’s true that 52% of the women we surveyed claimed to prefer a fit, sporty appearance in their ideal men, we found that shapely men were more popular (taking 27% of the vote) than slender gents (22%). The message? In general, women are attracted to all sorts of body shapes, and aren’t afraid of the odd curve or bulge here and there. But don’t take this as an excuse to stay slumped in front of your TV, because although there seems to be some truth to the idea that there’s somebody for every body out there, you’ll increase your chances (and your overall health) if you take a little exercise and get up off that couch!
Do clothes make the man?
Suits and ties might not be required, but that doesn’t mean you guys are necessarily going to score by wearing sweatpants or the lethal combination of socks and sandals. Our women were mainly looking for casually dressed men (31%), but nearly a quarter of them admitted that they would be drawn to a chap who carries himself in a stylish manner. Clothing might not be the be-all-and-end-all, but making yourself vaguely presentable obviously helps to show potential partners that you can take care of yourself. Remember, first impressions definitely count.
Substance over style
Ok, so we’ve dealt with your body and what you put on it, but BREAKING NEWS ALERT: flexing your muscles and wearing the latest fashion just isn’t enough. Never underestimate the importance of what’s inside – personality! The ladies on Twoo made it clear that if you’re not frank (31%), humourous (10%), cheerful (8%), reliable (8%) or adventurous (6%), then forget it. And so what if there are a load of sporty hunks swanning around? The vast majority of our women (55%) said they were looking for one thing: a partner who trusts them. Personality and integrity always win out in the end!
Travel is hot, smoking is not!
Finally, if you’re looking for a secret weapon to help you conquer the hearts of our female members, our research suggests that you pull out one of your travel tales – because apparently there’s nothing hotter than a man who occasionally ventures out into the world. The more adventurous, the better! Topping our list of things to avoid mentioning, however, are tobacco products of all kinds – the majority of women (52%) are looking for non-smokers. So if you haven’t kicked the habit, maybe now’s the time…
Ok guys, now you know what women want, and it’s a fair bet that you’ll have recognised at least some elements of yourself while reading this blog post. So why not polish your rough edges using the results of our research and put yourselves out there on Twoo? We’d love to hear how you get on.
Everyone in Team Twoo loves movies, and so we decided to take a detailed look at Belgians’ film watching behaviour. And guess what we found out? Belgians prefer to go to the cinema with company. So far, so standard. What startled us was that 45% of them claimed that they would rather go to the flicks with friends than with a girlfriend or boyfriend. Partners were firmly relegated to second place (30%), while only 4% of respondents stated that they would rather go alone – mainly because that way they can see the movie they actually want to see. Ouch. Trouble in paradise?
A shoulder to cry on
However, as our results show, perhaps these lone wolves made the wrong choice and could have used some company after all – more than 60% of film fans admitted to regularly wiping away a tear at the end of a film (although obviously they almost all try to hide it). And yes, this is as true for men (51%) as for women (49%) – a stirring display of equality from our members! A tragic 5% of our Belgian survey group went even further, and confessed to being total cry-babies. Won’t someone give these sensitive souls a hug?
Horrified by romance?
While comedies (26%) and action films (22%) top the genres among our Belgian friends, in a surprising third place comes romance, followed by horror. Just under half of respondents described romantic comedies as being “sometimes ok”. At the same time, a similar number (44%) designated the genre as “heartwarming and funny”. At the opposite end of the spectrum, 7% spontaneously screamed “Change the channel!” As for horror films, slightly more than a quarter of Belgians (including men) said they jumped in terror while watching – the perfect opportunity to hide behind the extremely hardcore 10% who claimed to have “seen them all”. Because nothing says FUN TIMES like quaking in your seat…
It seems that almost all of us like to share our cinematic experiences with friends. Can’t find someone to go with you? Turn to Twoo! Wherever you’re based and whatever your tastes, updating your favourite films on Twoo could lead to a connection with a brand new movie buddy from your area. But where to go from there? Well, based on the numbers, we’d recommend a comedy. Whether it’s romantic or not… we’ll leave that up to you!
Here at Twoo HQ, we regularly receive e-mails from people telling us that their profile isn’t getting enough attention. In cases like this, our first step is to check out the user’s profile. And in the vast majority of cases, our search for answers ends right there. The reason? An unflattering profile picture.
Think for a minute about how you use Twoo. While browsing through profiles, it’s a fair bet that you’ll have skipped past other members simply because their photos didn’t hook you at a glance. The old cliché that first impressions count is unfortunately true. And if you’re judging people in a couple of seconds based only on their picture, you’d better believe that they’re doing the same to you. If your profile isn’t getting any interest, it’s almost certainly down to your choice of photo.
Don’t believe us? Fine, we don’t expect you to blindly take our word for it. Instead, we thought we’d put our theory to the test, using guinea pigs plucked from our own staff. A pair of our diligent workers, Lien and Stijn, each created two near-identical profiles each – the only difference being the choice of profile picture. One profile had a great pic, while the other had a truly awful one: dark, out of focus and unflattering. We set up the profiles, and waited to see how other Twoo users would respond. After a week, we tallied the results. And here’s what happened…
As you can see, the numbers speak for themselves: the good photos got the action. Let’s look again at Lien’s bad photo, though – what’s wrong with it (apart from the darkness, the lack of eye contact, the fact that it’s out of focus and the unflattering sense of exhaustion that it exudes)? The impression it creates isn’t friendly or engaging, so why would we want to find out anything more about this person? Now compare it with Lien’s good photo. She seems happy and relaxed, and is looking and smiling right at us. We want to know more, to be around that positive, upbeat energy… maybe even to be the one to prompt that smile in future.
Now let’s see how Stijn fared.
Again, you can see the difference. Users responded to the good photo, because Stijn looks like the sort of person we might actually want to be around. He’s engaging with the camera, smiling and radiating good humour, on what looks like a lovely day, out and about. Fun, right? Contrast that with the bad photo – what’s interesting about this social misfit? His awkward posture? His murky face that we can’t really make out? His evasive stare off-camera? You get the idea.
So what are the conclusions of our experiment? The better the profile pic, the better the response! Clear, brightly lit, happy photos are guaranteed to make a better impression than blurry, gloomy, miserable ones. So before you write to us, baffled by the lack of action your profile is getting, take a minute to check your profile from a stranger’s point of view (or even ask a trusted friend for their honest opinion). Based on first impressions, would you want to find out more? No? Then start snapping and don’t stop until you’ve got a bright, welcoming, friendly profile photo. We think we’ve proved that it makes all the difference.
Get ready to be noticed!