standard SL 46 – Swank Life with Lori Cheek

 

Lori Cheek founder of Cheek’d talks with Jake Swank about her dating app which connects the online and real world of dating together.

 

Key Takeaways
01:35 – The ideal of Cheek’d came from a date and grew from there.
03:19 – Cheek’d uses beacon technology to connect people to each other and notifies them if they cross each other enough times.
04:35 – If you get a notification about someone near you, you can look up their dating profile to know more about them.
05:50 – Users of Cheek’d have to agree to communicate with each other in order to chat.
06:49 – People have to be within 30 foot radius to connect with others.
07:46 – The Cheek’d website can show you where connections are happening and also where on the map you might have miss someone.
13:30 – for app go to Cheek’d or the iTunes store and for more info go to Cheek’d Twitter or Loricheeknyc

 

Mentioned in this episode
Look Up You Might Miss Something TEDx talk by Lori Cheek
Cheek’d
iTunes store
Cheek’d Twitter
Loricheeknyc

Tweetables
This app will help you break the ice.
This app might make you pay attention to what’s in-front of you to someone you might have never known was there.
Social media is everything but social, it’s very anti-social in some ways. We’re all looking at our devices now.

 

Transcript

Jake Swank:
Hey guys, welcome to the Swank Life show. Where we talk about: dating, entertainment, and lifestyle. This is your host Jake Swank and we’ve got a great show for you today. Be sure to visit the website at www.swanklife.com take advantage of our blog, our special offers. We’ve got all kinds great stuff for you there, to enhance your lifestyle in many many ways. So www.swanklife.com go check it out.

Hey it’s my pleasure to welcome Lori Cheek to the show. She is creator of a very cool new, actually I’m hoping this is kind of a revolution in dating apps, it’s called Cheek’d and she was on Shark Tank and presented it. And I’m just looking forward to having her here to talk about it with us today, because this connects online world to the real world and I think this kind of thing is long over-due. Lori welcome, how you doing?

Lori Cheek:
I’m great, thank you for having me.

Jake:
The pleasure is all mine. So, tell us about Cheek’d how you came to create it. I’m sure it’s stem out of a problem that you solved, right?

Lori:
Well, it was more like a light blub and I was an architect in New York city for fifteen years. And I was out to dinner with a guy one night and when I had excused myself to go to the little girls room, I came back and he scribble on the back of his business card, “Want to have dinner?” and he slid that to a woman as we were leaving the restaurant. And I remember thinking, “That’s so smooth.” and I’d like the fact that he was slipping a business card with a note on the back, but what I didn’t like is his personal information and his business stuff. So, I just started immediately brain-storming about how remove the business from the business card, and I created this business Cheek’d. So, this launch for four years ago was covered in the New York Times as the next generation of online dating and people would order this deck of cards that had codes on them. So you would slip them to a cute stranger and it would say, “you been cheek’d.” and on the other side there be this funny pick up line like, I just put all my drinks on your tab and they could type in the code to find your online dating profile. So, it was about this real life connect, and I went on the Shark Tank, I guess it’s been over a year ago, and I think they kind of got the ideal but the sharks end up telling me to, “Shoot my business behind a barn, like a rabid dog.” [Laughs] I listen to that, but it didn’t make me quit. Since that, there was a new technology that’s been released and it’s this Bluetooth connective activity. And now I got an app that’s based on the card concept but minus the card, so people can connect via their phones. It’s kind of a long journey that got me here with this new app.

Jake:
Okay, but Bluetooth isn’t new. What do you mean?

Lori:
It’s beacon technology and no one had quite built this thing that, if you have the app and I have the app and we’re 30 feet cross from each other, sitting cross from each other on a train or even in a plane, our phones are these beacons, they can connect; that’s the new part. So, we’re using another startup technology called Newair and we’ve incorporate that into the Cheek’d app; that’s what connecting people phones. So if I cross by you in Starbucks and I’ve seen you a hundred times, now if we cross by each other. You will get a notification and it’s going to say, “you just missed Lori C.” and then you can open up my profile and learn a little bit more about me. Because I feel like these people that are crossing each others paths everyday, that don’t know if you’re single, married, gay, straight, or what, or if you just don’t have the opportunity to say, “Hello” this app will let you break the ice; then you know the story of the person a little bit, at least you know they’re single, so you can break the ice, either on the app or you can walk up to them and then you know a little bit about them.

Jake:
Okay, so how do you actually use it. I’m not understanding it yet, and I have a feeling the listeners might not be understanding it too. Like give us an example, it’s sounds like a super cool ideal.

Lori:
Let’s say, you and I are at a bar and I’m at one end at the bar and you’re at the other end of the bar.

Jake:
And you want pick me up, of course.

Lori:
But let’s say, I haven’t even seen you yet.

Jake:
[Laughs] Just kidding.

Lori:
But of course I would. Let’s say, I’m sitting at the other end of the bar, maybe in the next room and if you’re in there and we both have the app. It will pop up and say, “You just miss Max M.” for example and then I can open up Max’s profile on my phone, by swiping to open up the app and then I could see, it’s like a typical online mobile dating app profile, and you would also get the same notification. That’s going to clue you in this cutie is inside the bar with you or somewhere. I think in this day and age where we’re all obsessive with our phones and looking down at our screens, that this new app might actually make you pay attention to what’s in-front of you or could be behind you or someone that you could never know was at the end of the bar. But I think it’s super cute and playful way to flirt with someone that could been four seat down form you or maybe they’re at dinner with their parents and you could shoot them a quick message on the app.

Jake:
So the types of messages you shoot them is it like, a text, it’s a prefab message, right?

Lori:
No, no, no, it’s just like a regular chat, imagine kind of like Facebook messaging system within our app. The main thing is that if you’re at the end of the bar and I’m at the other end and we both see each others profiles, we both have to agree to communicate with each other, in a similar way that on Tinder you both have to like each other to be able to communicate; it’s work like that, so you just can’t be a total stranger sending messages. You have to express interest within the app and then you just start chatting. So, you could say like, I’m going to send you a drink or take a look at 3 o’clock you might be missing the love of your life. You can just get playful within the messaging system on the app.

Jake:
Okay, cool, that’s good. So, it’s kind of like reminisce of passing notes in school, it kind of has that cuteness about it. But you have to like each other like Tinder, so other people using Cheek’d it’s not going to send a notification that this person’s on it, right? Or it is?

Lori:
No, it won’t, you have had to cross paths within 30 foot radius. But if you imagine the morning commute in New York city with everyone on the subway, it’s a point in time of the day that people do not communicate because if you say, “Hello.” to a stranger at 8 in the morning, they’re going to think you’re a freak. This is something that doesn’t require an internet connect, so if you are on your forty minute ride to Manhattan from wherever you can get out of the train and then it’s going to show you everyone that was in a 30 foot radius of you in the train or on a plane or in a dungeon, you don’t need to be connected. I think it’s also cool that it’s connecting people like that because that’s a place where so many people don’t get the chance to communicate.

Jake:
Yeah, very interesting, really cool. While you were talking, I set up the app and this is pretty neat. What else can you tell about it?

Lori:
I guess, what happens when you first open up the app you can select up to ten pictures and you connect with Facebook and we do that just to verify that you’re a human being, because otherwises you can just spam the heck out of the site, out of an app. And then when you get to the first screen it shows you where connections are happening. So, within New York city it would show you certain neighborhoods where there are a lot of connections happening. And then you click the next screen and it shows you all your miss connections, so maybe you don’t have this phone out looking at the app all the time. So let’s say, you forget about it and you open it up on Friday and it’s going to show you the whole week. Who you passed within the 30 foot radius, so everyone, maybe at a stop sign and it’s going to show you on a map where you crossed each other and then it’s going to tell you how many times you’ve crossed each others paths. Maybe every morning you could be passing the love of your life and just not paying attention.

Jake:
There’s a video about that and I think you need to tie this in with your marketing, it’s called Look Up have you seen that video?

Lori:
No, but I did a TEDx talk.

Jake:
Oh really?

Lori:
Basically titled Look Up You Might Miss Something.

Jake:
Un huh, yeah well check out that video too, because that will tie right in with your TEDx talk. [Laughs]

Lori:
Okay, absolutely.

Jake:
It’s something, yeah, cause we’re all looking at our devices now. It’s amazing social media is everything but social, it’s very anti-social in some ways. So in other words you don’t need to act upon the connection right at the time, like if you’re rushing around town, you can just see, “Oh wow, I miss her.” and then you can connect later? Is that right?

Lori:
Exactly, you could get home later that night and look at the app and investigate who these people are and where you miss them. You know one perfect example, when I think about all of these runners in the morning on the west side highway in New York city. They pass each other everyday, they’re seeing each other and it’s not like they’re going to say, “Hello.” when they’re crossing each other and you don’t know their story, but suddenly if these people have their phones on, you can even use a wearable device such as a Fitbit as your beacon too, and you can connect that to your phone and that can make you aware of your misses as well. So, you wouldn’t even have to have your iPhone to use the app necessarily.

Jake:
Very interesting, this is a really interesting ideal. So, what else can you tell us about it or just generally any tips on socializing in dating?

Lori:
We just launch it in the iTunes store few weeks ago, and of course, we got a few bugs in there, so we haven’t told the world about it, quite yet. So, if anybody downloads it, just be patient, before it starts doing its magic, but hopefully within the next couple of weeks, everything will iron out and crystal clear, and we’ll be ready to roll. So, we’re going to launch this app all over in every city in America. And I actually just had a couple of launch parties in Kentucky, I’m home for the holidays, and I had one in Louisville and last night in Lexington, and everybody phones were connecting. It was really cool to watch, it’s the first time that I’ve had these groups together and watching them connect, and they are like, “Oh! Who’s Jessica?” [Laughs] So, I just think it’s going to be really playful to, if you’re in event, and the plan is that we start having weekly event in New York city and you get these people together, in a party of a hundred and fifty people you’re not get to talk to everybody; so hopefully the phone will be an asset to a little bit of that work for you. And, we’re only on iPhone right now but Android will follow quite soon, hopefully, fingers crossed.

Jake:
I would never date any girl who has an Android, [Laughs] I’m just kidding!

Lori:
[Laughs] Yeah, I’m a big Apple fan too, but I hear there’s some people out there with those funky phones.

Jake:
That’s right. So, why do you have to launch it in a city? Just to develop awareness about it? People could just download the app and turn it on, right? They don’t need-

Lori:
Yeah, but I think, okay so first of all, it’s one of these apps where people have to be on it for it to become interesting-

Jake:
Of course, if there aren’t enough people on it, it won’t work, yeah.

Lori:
Right, so getting ten people on it in a city, will not interesting, because a 30 foot path, especially in a huge city is going to be hard to miss someone. So, I think it’s going to be important for me when I launch this, to have lots of events and get two hundred people on it in each neighborhood and then when they start crossing each other, the app’s going to start doing its work.

Jake:
How come nobody thought of this before? What’s the big deal here? Why doesn’t Match.com do this? What doesn’t Facebook do this?

Lori:
You know even when I come up with that card ideal years ago and I went to investors, they’re like, “What? Any, you know, Match.com could do this.” and I’m like, “I don’t know Match kind of does their thing, their online dating, they do it well and I just don’t think any online dating site is just going to pivoting to this.” I just got a fresh start and this technology was brand new and I jump on it, and somebody could easily building it. But I do have a four year dating business under my belt now, and we’ve got a lot of followers and users from the old concept that we can turn into users at the new concept. And there are quite a bit of apps that are using GPS but no one is doing this Bluetooth in such a close proximity. Because some of these GPS apps, there’s another one out there, but it will tell you someone’s ten feet in-front of you but they can also be on a hundred floor of a building, so my app doesn’t do that. Bluetooth is about physical 30 feet.

Jake:
Yeah, that’s interesting, that’s a great ideal, Lori. Tell people where they can go, maybe you wanna give them the proper spelling of the app or just any information, your website is just a link to the app store. Do you have any more information?

Lori:
Yes, so basically if you go to Cheek’d.com and you can download the app straight from the link on our website or you go to the iTunes store and type in Cheek’d and there’s a couple that pop up and just press either one of those, and you can find us on Twitter at Cheek’d and you can find me at Loricheeknyc that’s my Twitter handle.

Jake:
Lori Cheek thanks for joining us today.

Lori:
Thank you for having me.

Outro:
This show is produce by the Hartman Media company, all right reserved. For publication rights and media interviews, please visit www.hartmanmedia.com or email media@hartmanmedia.com. This show is for entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered personal or professional advice. Please consult an appropriate professional, if you require individualized advice. Opinions of guests are their own and the host is acting on behalf of the Hartman Media company company, exclusively.

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