Interviews

Executive Interview: Rutger Tolenaar, CEO of Datingwebsites.nl

Rutger Tolenaar

Name: Rutger Tolenaar
Position & Company: Founder / CEO Datingwebsites.nl
Period of time in the role: Started in 2005
Twitter ID@rutgertolenaar

Can you describe your role and what you do in one sentence?

Datingwebsites.nl is a website where consumers can write reviews about dating sites.

What is your personal style in business in three words?

Direct, honest and laidback.

How did you get into the online dating industry?

I noticed there weren’t any review sites about dating yet, despite the fact there is a lot to complain about.

What are you most proud of in your role?

I work alone, so I do everything myself: programming, design, marketing, etc.

What are the biggest challenges the industry faces?

Getting the trust from customers. There are so many sites trying to rip off their customers with fake profiles, fake messages, etc., that customers are very wary when registering with a new service.

What do you believe is the most exciting opportunity facing the industry?

It’s very dynamic. You can change your business almost overnight.

What do you love most about the online dating industry?

The dating professionals are such nice people. Very smart and never shy to share their information.

Which service or company do you admire in the online dating industry?

I think Metaflake is doing some excellent things in the DACH countries. It’s inspiring to talk to Henning. He’s got a great mind and is open in sharing ideas. LoveRevenue.com who handles the affiliates of Victoria Milan is also great. Awesome people who understand affiliates very well.

What sets your company apart from others in the industry?

Because I do everything alone and my traffic is from SEO only I have zero costs. Because most things on my website are automatized I can operate this site in 22 countries without hiring personnel.

What does the rest of 2013 hold for your company?

Expanding to some more countries and growing in the markets I just started this year. I’m also working on a mobile version of the site and some other new features.

Simon Edmunds

Simon is the former editor of Global Dating Insights. Born in Newcastle, he has an English degree from Queen Mary, London and after working for the NHS, trained as a journalist with the Press Association. Passionate about music, journalism and Newcastle United.

Global Dating Insights is part of the Industry Insights Group. Registered in the UK. Company No: 14395769