TV and Online Dating: The Perfect Match?

The rise of online dating continues to scale new heights, with love-seeking Britons devoid of time and opportunity turning to the diverse virtual plains of the Internet in search of romance.
With up to 1 in 3 relationships now starting online, this distinctly 21st century appetite for variety, unpredictability and broadened social horizons is perhaps best reflected in the sheer volume of online dating brands now advertising on TV.

A Sector Smitten with TV Advertising.

In 2013 a grand total of 15 brands within the online dating sector advertised on TV. Together, this motley crew of established names and television newcomers amassed almost 6 billion impacts. In other words, an online dating advertisement was seen 6 billion times across the year.

To further emphasise the ubiquity of online dating brands within the TV advertising market, 

here are some reach and frequency figures:


  • The average TV viewer in the UK watched 119 ads promoting online dating services across the duration of 2013.
  • Online dating advertisements reached 99.1% of the adult population at least once.
  • Burrowing further, 98.5% of viewers were reached at least twice.
  • A huge 93.2% of the UK adult population watched a minimum of 10 online dating TV ads across 2013.
In terms of channel popularity, the following list highlights the top five by impacts achieved:

In total, brands within the online dating sector spent just shy of £20 million across 2013, with January, July and August proving to be the months which delivered the highest impacts as a result of lower TV advertising rates and more spots. February was also significant, not least because of that most commercialised of celebrations, Valentine’s Day.  The three biggest spenders from the online sphere in 2013 were Match.com, eHarmony and Uniformdating.com.

A Growing Market

Looking ahead, Guerillascope believes 2014 will once again play host to intense competition within the online dating sector. As a means of illustrating this, we’ll compare the first two months of 2014 with the corresponding period last year.
  • In 2013 10 brands within the online dating sector spent an aggregate total of £5.3 million.
  • So far in 2014 there have been 13 advertisers which, combined, have spent a total of near £6 million.
And what's more, this is a sector that’s growing. Last year five brands debuted on TV, with 2014 already welcoming two newcomers. In the UK alone there are over 15 million single adults, with 9 million having logged on to a dating website; indeed, the UK is also the most active country in Europe when it comes to online dating. Figures explicate that the industry is worth £170 million to the national economy. Clearly, there is enough interest amongst the UK population to accommodate this continuing boon in TV advertising.

As online dating becomes more socially acceptable, more people are becoming enticed by its benefits. Dating is now a 24/7 pursuit, accessible anywhere and at any time, but more importantly it’s fun and flexible, adding a sense of adventure to rigid daily routines.

Brands operating within the online dating sector will be aware of its growth, but some may not be aware that a TV advertising campaign is the most effective approach to ensuring that they secure they’re own slice of a very nourishing pie.

To begin planning your own TV advertising campaign give Guerillascope a call on 0207 352 0555, or alternatively, complete our quick and easy TV planning form.