Move Over Tinder: Get To Know Bae, The App Changing Online Dating For Millennials Of Color

August 4, 2015  |  

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We’ve seen an increase in mobile dating apps such as Tinder, SoulSwipe and OkCupid. Even eHarmony and Match.com jumped on the mobile dating app bandwagon and adopted the swipe system. It allows you to swipe right for profiles that interest you and left for those that don’t without the guilt of hurting someone’s feelings. But for Brian Gerrard, he realized that he didn’t see a lot of people who looked like him on such popular dating apps. He believes that was a factor in the lack of matches he seemed to be getting on apps like Tinder.

Gerrard created the mobile dating app Bae (Before Anyone Else) as a way to enhance the Black dating experience. For Gerrard, he didn’t feel like apps like Tinder promoted long-term dating, and he wanted to establish something that allowed people of color to connect and stay connected.

Dating can be extremely time-consuming, especially when you have a million things going on as most of us millennials do. Gerrard realized that online dating helped break down dating barriers, but more so, he realized that mobile dating allowed users to make connections anywhere at any time right from their phone. For a lot of us, our phones never leave our hands, so a mobile dating app seemed like a brilliant way to deliver Bae to everyone.

Using Tinder, Gerrard noticed that his Black friends were only averaging about seven matches per week while his White friends were averaging at least 60. With a background in media analytics, he found that African Americans were 10 times less likely to get a match than a non-Black individuals. So he wanted to make navigating these dating apps and having success using them easier.

When Gerrard launched his app in April, he had no idea that it would take off as quickly as it has. Within the first two months he had approximately 50,000 downloads, and the users of Bae continue to increase daily. Gerrard began a tour targeting historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and the amount of positive feedback, according to him, has been incredibly overwhelming. With the launch, Gerrard was able to curate all the matches, see how people were using the app and use that data to continue and enhance the app.

While the target audience is people of the diaspora (African American, Afro-Caribbeans, Afro-Latin Americans, etc.), which is basically anyone “who doesn’t sound corny using the word bae,” Gerrard assures that anyone can use Bae. So whether you’re Black or someone who loves Black men and women, feel free to download the free app available on iTunes and Google Play for Android.

So what’s next for Bae? Gerrard plans to launch tours to create more publicity for the app. This summer Bae is hosting a series of “BaeBQs” in NYC, as well as DC, and other hot spot cities frequented by young Black professionals. In the hopes of being more than just a dating app, but also a brand, Gerrard plans on hosting dating meetups and networking mixers as another way to create matches and make waves. This is just the beginning.

Have you tried Bae yet? If so, what do you think?

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