Muddy Matches twist on virtual dates celebrated

Wednesday, May 20th, 2020

Muddy Matches’ efforts to breathe fresh air and creativity into virtual dating during lockdown has been celebrated by ODA; the online dating industry’s regulating body.

With dating from a distance – and video calls – now the ‘new normal’ for online daters and couples enduring lockdown apart, finding innovative ways to keep singletons keen and interested has thrown up some imaginative ideas.

Never ones to shirk a challenge, Muddy Matches have jumped in with the both muddy boots, albeit from a socially acceptable distance, to keep their members‘ radar set on rural romance; and they have done so whilst sticking close to their rural roots by celebrating the countryside and championing the best in artisan British produce.

Through the Muddy Matches website, country-minded singletons have been able to share their sense of outbound adventure together in a series of 360° virtual video experiences that bring the outdoors in; from climbing Ben Nevis and trekking the Brecon Beacons to a glider flight over the Yorkshire Dales or a birds eye view of the Lake District.

And the latest muddy twist on the video date and Zoom quizzes sees Muddy Matches encourage members to get together on Zoom, Skype or Facetime to taste test some of the finest artisan and local produce in Virtual Tasting Dates – all supporting local business and showcasing artisan and handcrafted product to a new audience.

Exclusive ‘muddy’ member offers on artisan cheeses, wines, gin, chocolate and even game meat all make lockdown just a little bit sweeter.

Lucy Reeves, co-founder of Muddy Matches, said “Virtual dates are all the rage at the moment but we wanted to put a muddy twist on things and put some much deserved spotlight on local produce and local business whilst folk were at it. As a brand with deep roots in country life, it is important that Muddy Matches pledge our support to local businesses, back British food and farms in all their splendour where we can at this time.

These ideas, which have helped Muddy Matches plough on past the ½ million milestone during the lockdown, has been commended by the Online Dating Association who namechecked the tasting dates and 360° experiences in their top 10 of virtual date recommendations.

George Kidd, CEO of the ODA, said: “Under lockdown Britain, online dating is helping fulfil a basic human need for company and companionship. Not only is it keeping romance alive, but it is also fulfilling a very important social need, to bring people together.

“Daters themselves are becoming ever more ingenious in how to make the most of their time apart. In some cases, this is by hand gliding together over a 360-degree virtual landscape of England. In others, it is by wine-tasting and watching a film.”

Whilst it is the likes of Zoom who have seen the sharpest rise in popularity, enabling a 2900% increase in video chats last month, the online dating industry has been widely praised for its resilience in recent times.

Looking for love has not stopped during lockdown with over 2.3 million people choosing to take comfort in online dating websites and apps in the last 30 days of lockdown.

Reports also suggest 35% of daters believe that those they are exchanging messages with are being more inventive and creative about building a relationship.