Tinder isn’t exactly the fire-starter we once imagined it to be. The “dating” app most millenials were originally sold on seems to have dramatically shifted into something that resembles more of a… firework supply co., providing the majority of right-swipers with only one or two nights worth of short-lived kabooms throughout the year. Some are grand, some are duds, and depending on the state you live in, some are illegal. Now, thanks to The League, those looking for love can leave all of those woes in yesterday’s world.
Meet Amanda Bradford, CEO and founder of the The League, an increasingly popular dating app that’s generating quite a buzz in the business world. Amanda’s app is unique in that it focuses on refining the modern dating application through certain channels of exclusivity. For starters, singles looking to join The League’s free agency must apply and be reviewed. The reviewal process includes retrieving background info and as well as more personal details like social status and employment — criteria that defines The League and its standards.
In an effort to get the full scoop on The League, I shot Amanda, a Stanford business grad, five somewhat-heavy questions about dating, technology and love. To no surprise, the startup empress fired back without a pinch of hesitation or uncertainty on the world-puzzling subject — a sign that she is more than comfortable as the game of love’s commissioner.
So your app, The League… it’s about dating and finding love, right? Not fantasy football or a certain TV show of the same name that is centered around a fantasy football league?
The. Best. Show. Ever. So much so, we wanted their name! But yes, yes, you’re right, it’s about finding love in this hopeless place and doing it in a smart way. The people on The League are busy building their empires, but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to share that busy life with someone like everyone else. Everyone wants to find love!
I’ve done alright on Tinder and I’m aware of Hinge, a popular alternative. What does The League offer that these other dating apps do not?
Michael, of course you’re doing alright on Tinder! Who wouldn’t swipe right on your cute face? But this isn’t about giving you more matches at all, in fact, you’ll definitely have less number of matches on The League. And this isn’t about giving you ‘hotter’ girls necessarily (although I do think The League has the hottest in my completely unbiased opinion). It’s about quality. By requiring our users to double authenticate with Facebook & LinkedIN, we can use these data graphs to provide more background info about the user while also blocking you from coworkers, friends, business connections, and…your boss! Awkwardness is eliminated. Our goal with the curated invite-only community is to give you matches that are smart, educated, driven, and independent. So for you Michael, girls that you could have a conversation with, girls that might challenge you, and ultimately, the kind of girl you would think about settling down with. If you don’t want that kind-of girl, well, there’s other apps out there!
Has the development of this app shown or taught you anything interesting about our culture’s take on relationships and technology?
There’s so many interesting trends we’ve seen I could talk about this all day. The part that interests me most (and maybe it’s because I’m single and dating!) is the impact of age and education on preferences. At the age of 35 or higher, guys show a 33% increase in ‘likes’ for women who are highly educated, and if he has a graduate degree it grows to a 50% increase in like-rate. So basically, smart educated women should date older 😉 .
Have you seen the movie Her? It’s about this dude that falls in love with an operating system. Is that what the future of dating looks like?
I think that movie highlighted how close of a connection you can form without ever meeting someone in person. The issue is, you want to meet up to ensure that connection translates in real life so you’re not wasting your time ‘bonding’ with someone you have zero attraction to. Once you’ve met up once though, I do think there’s a lot one can do digitally to deepen the relationship digitally, so I guess you could say yes, I do see relationships getting more digital and less physical in the future, especially for all of us busy people.
Alright, last one. It’s heavy but I know you’ve got it. How does one know when they are in love?
Oh man. This may not be the most romantic answer, but I think love is a balance of compatibility (you could be with each other for 3 weeks straight and not get sick of each other), attraction/chemistry, and finally, an unconditional support of the other person’s goals and priorities. At least that’s what I’m holding out for!