First, I should mention that Jess and Ken Deckinger are a real married couple. The idea for creating the site came from their own experience of finding each other. Years ago, his friend Adele created a glowing profile for Ken on a similar type of site - where a woman could recommend a guy who she liked but wasn't interested in dating. Soon, an interested Jess (who was creating a profile for her co-worker) emailed her to find out more about Ken. The rest is history.
Ken and Jess believe that their experience finding each other will work for others, too. “Jess, Meet Ken helps women to cut through the noise typically found on traditional dating sites,” CEO and co-founder Ken Deckinger explains, adding that women get bombarded with emails on these sites.
This isn't Deckinger's first experience with helping singles - he co-founded successful speed date franchise Hurry Date in 2001 before it was acquired by JDate. Now he's back in the dating game again, this time aiming to help people find more than just a date.
The set-up is pretty simple. Women can sign in with a Facebook account (the site doesn't post this on your page, so don't worry about announcing it to your friends). Then you're asked if you want to recommend a guy or find a guy. (Note: The site is still in beta. If you recommend one of your friends first, the membership is free and you get pre-launch access, so I suggest going this route.)
If you recommend a guy, you're prompted to answer 10 questions about him, such as: How's his sense of humor? Is he good looking? What does he do? Then you complete a short profile saying why he’s a catch.
And if you're a guy? Well, it's invitation only. You have to get one of your female friends to recommend and post you on the site. Jess, Meet Ken offers to help you ask, too.
Vetted matches are becoming a valuable commodity among women, especially with popular apps like Lulu - described as a "Yelp" for dating. Having others recommend men to date also makes meeting strangers a bit safer, especially in cities like Los Angeles.
“The quality of the people that are posting and being posted on Jess, Meet Ken is quite high," Deckinger says. "It’s because every single guy must be put up there by a woman who is willing to vouch for his awesomeness."
So, if you're tired of the current dating scene, maybe it's time to check out Jess, Meet Ken.