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#ForTheWin: Bumble Inc. Pilots A Bold Second Move

Week of 3/11-3/15, 2024

What's The Deal: Bumble Inc. (NASDAQ: BMBL), the popular dating app known for women making the first move, recently made headlines when its CEO, Lidiane Jones, announced that the company is rethinking its position on its core feature.

What They Got Right: Despite the potential for Bumble's announcement to disengage its customer base, Jones' messaging proved strategically sound. She highlighted a shift in societal norms (since Whitney Wolfe Herd founded the company a decade ago), acknowledging that a subset of female customers now perceive the requirement for women to initiate conversations as an additional burden in the already intricate world of online dating. Jones framed the decision as a proactive response to evolving user preferences, especially in a sensitive area like dating dynamics. In doing so, she communicated both brand relevance in a shifting cultural landscape and commitment to the company's core mission: empowering women to navigate dating safely. By introducing the idea through communications channels, Bumble had the opportunity to assess user sentiment and market reception before full implementation. An added benefit? Openly discussing the reconsideration of its approach builds consumer trust and strengthens the company's reputation as a well-deserved industry leader.

What's The Watch Out?: Bumble will undoubtedly conduct a thorough review of the impact of Jones' announcement. However, as with any significant shift in strategy, there may be lingering concerns among its stakeholders. Should it choose to move forward with a product revamp, Bumble must ensure it stays transparent and keeps its external communications focused on its customers when addressing any potential issues that arise. 

For these reasons, we recognize Lidiane Jones, Gabrielle Ferree, and Bumble's communications team #ForTheWin.

Disclaimer: Bumble Inc. is not a Perceptual Advisors LLC client.

About the Author

Alana leads the firm's operations in the New York Region and is Head of the Brand Strategy practice, where she helps companies find their “why” and pushes the boundaries of creativity through the lens of high brand standards. Trained as a journalist, she spent the first 10 years of her career positioning and launching content-driven brands at News Corp., The Huffington Post, and Turner Broadcasting. Over the last 6 years, Alana has served in several high-impact senior brand positions at health-tech and e-commerce startups (B2B and B2C) through various investment phases.

Today, she’s focused on helping companies align brand strategy with business strategy, embrace the unconventional, and create stories and experiences that influence prospects and engage customers. Whether it’s a new brand launch or a need to connect to a new audience, Alana draws upon her experience in qualitative research, brand architecture and positioning, attribute and brand essence development, messaging architecture, user persona development, and engagement strategy to creatively solve problems and drive commercial success.