TrulyMadly is an authentic dating app that lets users find suitable matches through the use of a gatekeeper algorithm based on AI known as ChowkAIdar
The majority of the new customers as well as 42% of the revenues are out of its Tier 2 or Tier 3 places, according to the company.
The industry of dating services in India is estimated to earn $387.6 Mn in revenues in 2022.
In India the right to pick a spouse remains a right that is enjoyed by the urban elite. In the majority of cases, weddings are orchestrated by family members, parents neighbors, well-wishers, and neighbours. It’s a custom, and a 2018 study by Lok Foundation and Oxford University found it was 90% of contemporary Indians have opted to continue with married ceremonies that were arranged.
Despite this tangled-in-tradition social fabric dating apps have made ways into mainstream. This year, MakeMyTrip founder Sachin Bhatia as well as Letsbuy.com’s Hitesh Dhingra, along with Rahul Kumar (former MMT’s product manager MMT) began to make a major transformation. In February 14 which is recognized to be Valentine’s Day, the trio introduced the online dating service TrulyMadly.
In the early days online dating with no social policing was still a relatively new idea. The world-wide dating application Tinder was introduced to India one year ago, but was already infamous for the large number of fake profiles posted on the site.
The closest thing in relation to apps for dating were matrimonial websites. “They utilized to set strict requirements regarding caste, religion and appearance. However, today’s Indians aren’t interested in the whole thing,” said Snehil Khanor who was one of the founders who was the product manager for TrulyMadly from 2016. He then left the company and was appointed vice-president of Zimmber the online marketplace for home services later purchased by Quikr.
In the year 2019, TrulyMadly underwent a major transformation after Dhingra and Kumar quit, while Khanor returned as chief executive officer and cofounder. The same year, Amit Gupta who was the co-founder of proptech company FellaHomes and the dating apps Delta (shuttered) joined the company in Delhi as its Cofounder as well as CTO.
For Bhatia He was key in the evolution of the business. “He was instrumental in helping us restructure the business and also provided us with capital. He is involved with us as an in-person partner and guide,” said Khanor.
In contrast to casual dating websites TrulyMadly is a serious dating application, an ideal blend of networking on social networks, “friending” and romantic escapades without the pressure of marriage. Simply put, the users on this site are seeking suitable relationships that could lead to lasting relationships or tie the knot. Additionally, as per the digital age, technology is a key factor and finds the most compatible matches through tests of compatibility. Additionally, fake profiles and fraudulent accounts are removed by a proprietary AI-based gatekeeper algorithm Chowk AI-dar.
Within three months, it has clocked 11 million users who have registered. The company claims that it is growing at a rate 90 percent and hopes to achieve $100 million in revenue in 2026. Incredibly, over 54% of the new customers and 42 percent of its revenue come out of Tier 2 or 3 areas According to the CEO. This shows how Bharat has evolved to the changing times. TrulyMadly is catering to young couples who are serious about the possibility of a compatible relationship.
Playing Cupid, One Match At A Time
Khanor stated to Economic pitch that the test for compatibility was designed by relationship counselors and psychologists in keeping Indian customers in consideration. When users sign up, they will be asked between 20 and 25 yes-no questions. This can vary depending on the excitement you have when sharing your phone login details with a friend or partner or if it’s okay when your spending habits are different.
“Usually you begin to be aware of these things three to four months of dating. However, we strive to pick the perfect person right from the beginning,” said Khanor.
Furthermore the trust score, which ranges from 0 to 100% guarantees that the profiles aren’t fake. TrulyMadly authenticates them using the information of the user, such as gender, name age, relationship status, age, educational background, job title and photograph. The higher the score on trust is, the better profile exposure.
Users can boost their trust scores by uploading verified documents or connecting to their accounts on social networks. For example, linking to a LinkedIn account (or another social network account) earns you 10%. Likewise when connecting the account to an email ID that is verified earns another 10% and mobile verification can add 20 percent to overall score.
A selfie verification (TrulyMadly performs a real-time facial recognition scan to verify whether the image in the profile matches that of the person who actually uses it) The user is awarded 30 percent. The other 30% comes by linking a profile to an official ID such as the Aadhaar card or driving licence, passport or. In the past year, this dating site has partnered with CRED, an incentive-driven credit card payment application that makes the verification process for profiles simple. Connecting one’s CRED profile will score 100% since these profiles have been pre-checked and satisfy all regulations.
Trust scores are not the only thing that matter, and the company’s gatekeeper algorithm known as ChowkAIdar , works with the manual assessment tools that can identify fake profiles and bots.
The removal of fake and fraudulent accounts is the order urgently, given the increase in scams and frauds that are prevalent on dating websites. According to an 2021 study from the Russian cybersecurity company Kaspersky 51% of online users reported that they were victimized (impersonated) and 17% of them claimed that their identity was stolen in exchange for different profiles on dating sites. On average, TrulyMadly disqualifies 43% of users who apply to join.
The company has decided to use an open-source model and says that 3-3.5 percent of non-paying customers become paid users after having used the app for 30 days. Plans start at INR 699 for a week, and increase to INR 1,799 over 20 weeks. Members who pay for their subscriptions get extra advantages, such as better visibility, compatibility checks prior to joining a profile, and many other benefits. According to Khanor the majority of the startup’s revenues come from subscriptions that are paid while the ARPU (average revenues per customer) is INR 1,600 per month.
How Referrals Paved The Path To Bharat Heartlands
The fact is that online dating is booming due to the rapidly changing gender dynamics in a younger technologically-savvy generation. According to the CEO, the application is gaining traction within Indian’s the Tier 2 as well as Tier 3 regions because of its distinct benefit proposition of the trust. TrulyMadly takes pride in its “serious” motives and the use of the most advanced technology platform, which ensures that fake profiles do be a hindrance to the safe dating experience it promises its members. This has resulted in the spread of referrals and word-of mouth publicity and has prompted young people to meet for dates, even if it’s they do it online.
Additionally, the increase in the use of internet in the last few time (currently in the range of 61 percent) has created a new avenue of opportunity far from the city as claimed by Khanor. “These times, people of all ages use the internet for everything from ordering food, to watching films and engaging with their friends on social media. Why shouldn’t people find the love of their lives online?”
Another benefit is that there is no geographical restrictions. “A person who lives in Varanasi could be a good suitable match for someone living in Lucknow. Our compatibility tests help users to discover matches that share the same values and interests. If someone is seeking an intimate romance, those are the the areas they are focusing around,” said Khanor.
Additionally, residents of smaller towns and cities that are not metropolis have smaller social circles and word-of mouth spreads rapidly in those areas. When he was the head of the business it was his experience to come across numerous instances where couples who met on TrulyMadly referred this service to relatives and friends.
Even more importantly, the effectiveness of word-of-mouth and referrals helps reduce the cost of acquisition for customers (CAC). In the end, an affordable cost of acquisition over a prolonged period is crucial for companies like TrulyMadly which lose two users when an effective match is achieved. Despite this, Khanor believes that satisfied customers will be more likely to recommend the app to other users.
He also said that “Your first date is not always going to be your partner for life and users have the time to study diverse personalities before finding “the perfect’ partner . Therefore, the process of dating is lengthy”. This guarantees that the base of users do not decrease.
In addition, based on its increasing coverage throughout Bharat,it has launched the app in 11 languages of the vernacular which include Hindi, Telugu, Bengali, Gujarati, Punjabi and other languages.
However, the company relies upon influencers to promote the idea that safe and secure dating is the best option. Therefore, it has formed partnerships with famous names such as actors Disha Patani Radhika Madan and Sidharth Alhotra and actor Tanmay Bhatti.
Challenges, Funding And The Road Ahead
Recently, Indian players have woken to the potential of dating apps that are virtual. This is evident in a myriad of local apps such as TrulyMadly, Aisle, DilMil and Frnd which offer their users the chance to meet romance in our modern world.
In the world of online relationships, immediate satisfaction or desired results will not result in repeat orders. Therefore, businesses like Tinder are dependent on a healthy turnover’ to keep the pursuit alive (for an improved match) according to the Amplitude, a firm that conducts product analysis. Amplitude. However, there is always a risk that unhappy users will fade off sooner rather than earlier, leaving your company empty and starving. Local variants such as TrulyMadly and its counterparts constantly evaluating ways to increase customer interest.
Consider, for instance, the Bengaluru-based andwemet site, an online dating platform with high-intent for Indians who are over 25 has been doing to gain momentum. The startup recently conducted an meeting up campaign that was location-independent which asked users to meet their potential match in person and have a date in the traditional way.
The shift from online to the hybrid culture of dating could be a new trend. In the meantime, TrulyMadly is expanding its product range and increasing its reach in order to stand out from the crowd. For instance, it’s developed TM Cafe, a video chat service for members who pay, where members can chat with each other via video or audio calls. The call will automatically end at the 90th second and the user can choose whether they wish to join. The feature is currently in beta, however the company is planning to allow more users over the next weeks.
The company’s efforts and results have also sparked interest from investors.
Under Khanor’s direction the platform has was able to raise two rounds of capital. The first round was $1.1 Million in pre-Series A funding from AngelList, Inflection Point Ventures and The Chennai Angels (TCA). The round also featured involvement from the Unacademy’s Gaurav Munjal Innov8’s Dr Ritesh Malik and Josh Talk’s Shobhit Banga, in addition to others.
On April 20, 2021 the company also raised $2.1 Million through Venture Catalysts and 9Unicorns. The existing investors were all to the stage together with the founders of InMobi, Abhay Singhal, and the Paytm’s Vijay Shekhar Sharma.
The company is now in the process of preparing for the possibility of expanding overseas. “We are building an NRI playbook for the Dubai market that has a large Indian diaspora and aim to use it for the US, the UK, Canada and Singapore in the next three-five years,” Khanor added. Khanor.
Are Dating Apps Changing India’s Cultural Sinews?
The dramatic rise of dating apps online is an enormous cultural shift. By 2021 TrulyMadly carried out a study that found that 50 percent of Indian mothers are happy with their children being able to find love through online dating. These results suggest that Indians are becoming more open to the western notion of.
According to Statista the Indian dating services sector is expected to generate $387.6 Million in revenues in 2022. In 2025, the total amount of revenue could reach 403 million.
Local and global players are competing for a significant share of the consumer internet market. In February 2022 ASO the intelligence-based platform AppTweak discovered that Indian dating application QuackQuack has daily average Downloads at 16K. That’s 4.6 percentage more than Tinder and the second-highest. The top 10 dating apps that are available in India (by the average number of number of downloads) includes Bumble (13.5K) and local companies like TrulyMadly (8.68K), Aisle (6.62K) and DilMil (4.26K).
The numbers are astounding And few companies can ignore this trend. This also indicates the growing rising popularity of Indian (and international) dating apps that have been modelled and modified to suit the dev context. However, what is important is whether investors take this market with renewed interest , despite the upcoming funding freeze? Can TrulyMadly and its local peers be able to attract more attention and become world-class success stories?