Decoded: How Tinder Uses the Pains of Dating to Masterfully Time Their Offers

Learn how Tinder uses customer pain and behavioral science to find the best timing and nudge you into purchase.

Is a great offer all you need? A closer look at the world's leading dating app reveals one thing that might be even more important than your proposition. Learn how “the swipe people” use great timing to make you convert! 

In this article, you'll discover: 

  • 5 times Tinder’s offer hits you at the best times; 
  • How Tinder leverages appeals to logic in emotion-driven situations; and
  • Why and how timed offers relate to customer pain points.
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More than 75 million people use the dating app Tinder every month to find their next match - be it a sports buddy or a new friend, but most likely a potential partner or a casual fling. Even before the pandemic, more than 40% of people met their significant other through online dating sites - and the pandemic increased that percentage even further. 

This emotion-driven business offers great added value to its customers. First of all, by broadening the pool of potential dates, meaning you no longer have to rely on your friend network, but more importantly, by easing the emotionally strenuous process of dating, removing uncertainty and covering for emotional vulnerability. 

And obviously, Tinder just knows how to do this. 

In 2019, Tinder was the highest-grossing app  - making more than Netflix or Clash of Clans. Last year alone, their revenue from selling different levels of premium membership reached $ 1.4 billion. And a part of that can be attributed to their customer experience, combined with the timely application of behavioural principles.  

Timely is one of the EAST framework principles defining the best way to apply behavioural insights. It means “approaching your prospects when they are the most receptive to your offer” But to find the right timing, you first need to understand the foundation upon which it is built: the pain points on the customer journey.

In 2019, Tinder was the highest grossing app - making more than Netflix or Clash of Clans. A part of that can be attributed to their customer experience, combined with the timely application of behavioral principles.

Understanding pain

Dating can be hard - from finding someone you like, testing the waters to see if they like you back, picking the right chat-up line, keeping the conversation going, all the way up to making a great first impression when you finally meet in person.

Each one of those steps in the dating journey is a hurdle - a pain that needs resolution. And millions of people around the world daily overcome one after another to find a potential partner. Tinder knows this journey and all the hurdles along the way like the back of their hands. And they use this knowledge to craft the most compelling offers.

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Well timed Tinder offers: 5 great examples

Every time you’re faced with one of these hurdles, Tinder is there to soothe your pain and offer you a premium membership that provides you with the right remedy - be it extra likes on your profile or a chance to rewind back to a lost match. 

Let's follow the journey of a “swiper” and decode all the well-timed offers from the moment they open the app: 

1. Does anyone like my profile at all?

You open the app, do some swiping, but your “matches” tab remains empty. What does Tinder do to boost your spirits and keep you swiping? They resolve your doubts about “what if nobody likes my profile?” and show you the number of people who have already liked you (along with blurred profiles).

No matches? All those people are already waiting for your like ... can you refuse an offer like this?
No matches? All those people are already waiting for your like ... can you refuse an offer like this? Source: Tinder

A match is so close! You just need to do one thing - buy a premium membership, and instantly gain access to a selection of people who are already interested in you. 

This simple trick ticks all the boxes:

  • It targets you at the right time and in the right frame of mind, when you’re looking for extra matches to feel wanted/connected 
  • It shows you the value of purchasing premium with a specific number and preview of interested profiles 
  • … and only when you get both the rational (number of people) and emotional (feeling wanted) arguments, does it show you the paywall
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