Oregon Duck Is First Sports Brand To Flirt With Tinder

In recent month’s we’ve seen consumer businesses (like Domino’s Pizza) and even charities (like Social Tees Animal Rescue) experiment with engagement on Tinder and now University Of Oregon has become the first sports brand to flirting with the online dating app.


Finding an appropriate tone and approach to leveraging Tinder, a dating app which finds potential matches close to where you are and invites users to swipe right to ‘like’ or left to ‘pass’ with the objective of matching two ‘likes for a match, might seem like a challenge – but it was one the university’s sports department was equal to.


The NCAA University dared to be first in November when it used the platform to offer fans the opportunity to win a ‘date to a game. with The Oregon Duck (the college team’s mascot).


In fact, the winner got a date with the mascot (including tickets) to a women’s volleyball game for her and three friends.


The campaign’s promotional online film begins with the mocking copy ‘He’s single. He’s ready to mingle. He never wears pants…’




Definitely a cheap campaign and possible a cheesy one too.


But finding an appropriate and responsible approach to activating on Tinder certainly ensured global media coverage.


The approach generated a positive reaction on social platforms from both students and sports fans and the tidal wave of PR certainly boosted the awareness in the university’s sports program.


The campaign certainly seems a good fit, as University Of Oregon students seem keen on Tinder.





A brave move with a gentle touch.


But there is a social world beyond the familiar heavyweights of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and its inevitable clever brands are going to find an appropriate approach to those other platforms at some stage.


Take mobile messaging apps alone – there are now at least 10 messaging apps with more than 100 million users.


Of course Tinder is certainly attractive from a statistics point of view.


With more than one billion daily swipes and recent New York Times research data showing the average user of Tinder is engaged with the app for an amazing 1 hour 30 minutes every day, it is not surprising that the sports, music, cultural and sponsorship worlds are interesting in engaging via the platform.


Yet, despite its huge user base and high profile, Tinder isn’t yet a fully monetised social channel.


Certainly brands are interested in it – particularly as a platform to target that crucial 18 to 30-year-old demographic.


But the slow uptake thus far is surely largely due to the inherent risks and potentially negative publicity that might come from old school, traditional media for those brands that engage via the notorious dating app might


Yet several of those brands, sponsors and rights owners who position themselves in the challenger and rebel silos must surely be tempted to follow the lead of the University Of Oregon and of other clever Tinder users such as Social Tees Animal Rescue (which recently used the Tinder to increase awareness for abandoned pets by creating pet profiles aimed at ‘owner/animal matching’ and generated 2,700 matches in less than a week).



How long before the rest of the sports and sponsorship industry follows their lead?




Oregon Duck Tinder Campaign On YouTube



University Of Oregon










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