Tinder launches ‘Festival Mode’ to connect music festival goers with profile badges

In the latest of a string of products aimed at attracting and engaging a younger demographic, dating app Tinder this morning announced the launch of a new feature called “Festival Mode,” designed to connect singles attending the same music festival. Similar to “Spring Break Mode,” announced this February, “Festival Mode” will also involve the use of badges on user profiles to indicate an upcoming destination.

These badges make it easier to spot, when swiping, those people who are planning to attend the same music festival as you.

Tinder is launching the addition in partnership with two entertainment companies, AEG Worldwide and Live Nation, and will make the feature available to those attending large festivals in the U.S., U.K. and Australia.

This includes the following events: EDC Las Vegas (May 17), Hangout Music Fest (May 17), All Points East (U.K., May 24), Governors Ball (May 31), Parklife (U.K., June 8), Bonnaroo (June 13), Firefly (June 21), British Summer Time (U.K., July 5), Lovebox (U.K., July 12), Faster Horses (July 19), Hard Summer (August 3) and EDC Orlando (November 9).

The company notes the market for music festivals is large, with more than 32 million in the U.S. expected to attend at least one. These festivals also put a large number of young single together in one location, which does inspire, um, “new connections.”

Tinder has seen this in its own data first-hand. During Hangout Fest in 2018, app registrations increased by up to 30x. Meanwhile, app activity at Bonnaroo 2018 increased up to 300x, at times.

The launch of Festival Mode speaks to Tinder’s broader strategy.

Following Tinder parent Match’s full acquisition of the relationship-focused dating app Hinge, it no longer sees the need to market Tinder as an app for serious daters looking for a love match. Though that could still happen, of course, the general push for Tinder going forward is to cater to those younger users not ready to settle down, and who instead want to embrace the “single lifestyle.” 

“It’s no secret that Tinder is a must-have app for singles attending music festivals around the world. We consistently see a spike in Tinder use as tens of thousands of music fans come together, so we wanted to create a new experience that makes it easier to connect with other concert-goers before even setting foot on festival grounds,” said Jenny Campbell, CMO of Tinder, in a statement about the launch. “We’ve partnered with some of the biggest names in the entertainment and events industry to make that happen, and we couldn’t be more excited to help Tinder users find their crowd during these events for the rest of 2019.”

Festival Mode launches today and will allow users to add event-specific badges to their profile approximately three weeks before each festival.

It’s not the first feature to cater to younger users in recent months. In addition to Spring Break mode, Tinder has been further developing and expanding its Tinder U product for college students, including with the launch of new features like Rivals Week, and others.

During Match Group’s earnings call with investors in February, CEO Mandy Ginsberg also noted Tinder would soon be rolling out more Tinder U events and marketing tied to the school’s social calendar going forward.