Google I/O 2014 – How Tinder caught fire & how your app can too: Sean Rad

JOHN: Hi, thank you
all for joining us here at the YouTube distribute space. We’re so excited to be
here with Sean Rad who is the CEO and
co-founder of Tinder. He literally flew in
from LA a few minutes ago and will be leaving right after. So we’re so excited
to have you here with. SEAN RAD: My pleasure. JOHN: Awesome. Awesome. So just to give a gist of
what we can expect here. So this is all about distribute. So here at I/O we have the
design, the develop spaces, but we really want to
focus on distribute. So after you build
a great product, what exactly happens for
you to get out there? And we have a perfect
example here with Tinder. I’m sure it’s an app that
I imagine a lot of you use. If not, I feel like I’ve come
up with the usage of I’ve– I think 20% of your traffic
from San Francisco comes from my user account. Is that what you were
telling me the other day? SEAN RAD: Pretty active, yeah. JOHN: Yeah, that
was our trade-off. So he revived my social
life and I brought Sean in for I/O. So that’s
how this works. So Sean, why don’t you let us
know a little bit about Tinder, what it’s about for those
of us who may not know, and then we’ll dive
into the interview. SEAN RAD: So who’s used
Tinder in the room? OK. Basically Tinder
makes it very easy for you to meet somebody new. When you want to meet somebody
new there’s always this, there’s this challenge,
whether it’s romantic or a business relationship. Or you have to put
yourself out there and you feel like you’re
about to get rejected and you feel overwhelmed. Or somebody’s coming
after you and you feel like, again, overwhelmed. Or you’re going to
have to reject another. And so there’s this
inherent friction. And we started Tinder because we
just wanted to break that down. We didn’t want to create
a directory of people and just sort of let
everyone figure out how to connect with them. We really wanted to
sort of give people a way to overcome
the barriers when it comes to meeting new people. And the way we do
that is simple. We find out when somebody
you want to meet actually wants to meet you back. And we do so in a way
that doesn’t require you putting yourself out there. And it’s sort of like you walk
into a room and what people do is they sort of look
at people in the room and say yes or no in
their head subconsciously. And then once in a while
you look at somebody across the room and
they look back and know you both want to meet each other
and at that moment nobody’s the aggressor, you’re
both just responding to this sort double
opt in, as we call it. And sort of a conversation
progresses from there. And Tinder works
very similar to that. JOHN: Awesome. So John let’s rewind
the clocks back. When did you guys start? When was Tinder officially
launched to the market. And take me through
what was day one like? What was going
through your head? Take me to that moment. SEAN RAD: Yeah. So we launched in August 2012. And the way we launched is
everyone in the room who was with us at the
time, basically I instructed everyone
to take out their phones and text a hundred
of their friends. And what we saw was amazing. There was when we started
basically spreading the word through social media
and through our friends, we had 500 users that night. The next day, just through
organic word of mouth, we had 1,000. And what happened was, a lot
of our friends came back to us and they’re like, wow, I
connected with this girl that I would see around town,
I had no idea who it was, your common friend, and I’m
going out with her tonight. And I was just like,
wow, that was quick. It worked. And literally within
24 hours we started seeing all these results
within our group of friends. Friendships being formed,
relationships being formed. And a week later, that
same group– so there was like a 99.5 retention
rate– daily retention rates. So like everyone was opening
up the app every single day. And we knew we had something. And there was value that
we were giving our users. So from there what
we did, we realized that in order to retain
the essence of Tinder and to have a valuable ecosystem
where people are actually engaged and they’re actually
using it the right way, we needed the product
to grow organically. And for two reasons. One, a user who comes in
organically through a friend, through word of mouth
is way more valuable because they’re more engaged. And when you sort of
have this network effect, you want your user to be
engaged and if they’re not when I swipe right on somebody
I’m not going to get a response and the overall value of
our ecosystem goes down. So every incremental
user that is organic increases the sort of overall
value of the ecosystem. Any user who comes in deflects
decreases the overall value. And the second
thing is we realized that to really
understand Tinder, it’s something that your
friend need to teach you. And that the people who
would make the most out of the experience, it’s
just like every ecosystem has this inherent language
on what you do, what you say, when you match, for example, or
what do you send in a Snapshot to your friends? These things get
developed through social– they’re sort of these social
norms that get developed. And we knew that those fibers
needed to be built on Tinder and it needed to
happen organically. So we actually had access
to a lot of channels where we could acquire
a lot of users quickly but we sort of let the platform
grow organically from there. JOHN: So you guys didn’t take
advantage of those channels. What were some of those
channels that you could’ve taken advantage of but you didn’t? SEAN RAD: So for
example, an early– one of our major investors
and shareholders is IAC and they were like, hey, feel
free to use or email lists. We had celebrities, for example,
who wanted to tweet it out, celebrities that
are friends of ours, I mean very big celebrities
that could get access– could give us a lot of
eyeballs immediately. We didn’t want to do
that because we weren’t ready to the
training wheels off. We wanted sort of the
ecosystem to develop. Also we knew our product it’s a
location based product, right? And you want to go to places
where there’s density. So here’s what we did do. I’m sure that was going
to be your next question. JOHN: You read my
mind, yes, exactly. SEAN RAD: What we realized is
that in order to truly test whether we’re solving
a real problem we had to go to an environment
where people were already very social charged
and had a lot of access to meeting new people. Meaning we weren’t
trying to help you– our goal isn’t to create
this directory of people to solve a problem where
you as an individual might not have access
to enough people. We were trying to solve
the problem of you knowing who you want to talk to, or
sort of going about your life and seeing a lot of people
that you want to talk to, but not having the context
to sort of go up to them and start a conversation. And we felt that that was a
problem for most of humanity. And in order to really, really
test whether that is a problem and whether our
solution had value, we went to colleges
because college, that’s an environment
where if you really want to stress test our
product, you go to colleges. Because it’s a group of
people who have access to a lot of like-minded
individuals, they’re in a socially
charged environment. You would imagine there are a
lot of opportunities to go over and say hello, there
is a lot of context– we’re in the same
class together. So we thought if we could
deliver a lot of value to colleges, then the
rest of the world– and they had a problem
that needed to be solved, then the rest of
world certainly had a problem that
needs to be solved. Then we could deliver
a lot of value to them. So we went to
colleges, A, because it was like shooting
fish in a barrel. It was a highly
dense environment where the word can travel
and people can sort of teach each other
how to use Tinder. And, B, because, like I said,
it was a good way to stress test the problem and the
solution and sort of figure out if we truly were
on to something. So how did we– which
I’m sure is going to be the next question–
how did we go to colleges? JOHN: I feel like he’s doing
the interview for himself. SEAN RAD: Well, we
did over the phone. So what we did is we
identified in every college, in every sort of location,
a key influencer, somebody who is looked up to
amongst his peers and can really cause change. And I think a lot
of times people think that is a quantity
thing, it’s not. Meaning if you really
look at college campuses– I don’t know if you’ve gone
to college or sort of think about how trends
start and everything. It doesn’t start through a
lot of people using something at once. I’m sorry, that’s not
what I wanted to say. A habit or trend isn’t
formed because you go to like 100 or 200
people and basically tell them to use the product
and sort of tell their friends. A habit is formed because
there’s this one person that a group of
people look up to. And that person does
something and it’s like top down marketing. Everyone else follows. Then there’s another layer
that follows that group and it just sort of
expands from there. So it’s like who’s that
patient zero and finding that patient zero was something
that we thought a lot about. And we were lucky that at USC,
which is where I went to school and my partner Justin
went to school, patient zero was
somebody that we Knew. We knew, basically, the
big person on campus that everyone looked up to. And then from there that
person knew somebody else at another college campus, and
that person knew somebody else. And then that network of
reps, that we called them, became international
because that person had a friend who lives in Paris. And then what
became college reps ended up becoming very
socialites and influential individuals in just
sort of cities, not necessarily on a college
but in a larger area. And then from there that
grew into celebrities. And at a certain point
we stop– I mean, now every day there’s
influencers, there’s press, there are a lot of people
talking about Tinder and none of that is, I
would say, provoked by us. This is just all organic. We take inbound requests
and our job today when it comes to marketing is to
ensure that people are saying the right things,
not to encourage them to talk about Tinder. Because it seems
like a lot of people want to talk about Tinder,
it’s about supplying them with the right language
and our vision. So they understand what
is the actual story here. And we don’t like
people going off and certain making their
own stories, particularly with the press. We want to help guide them
to understand what is working and what the facts are. JOHN: Of course, yeah. Something that really stuck
out to me as you were just describing it here, is like,
my goodness, Sean and Tinder have brought Malcolm Gladwell’s
Tipping Point to light. They talk about all
the theories there but here’s an example of how
you’ve identified a influencer and they have
spread your message as an evangelizer for Tinder. And I think that’s
something really beautiful. And I want to dive
more into the details of how did you enable them
to talk about your message? What did you give them? Because I think so many
people, here at I/O, you’re working on a proj,
you’re working on an app, you’re thinking about
how to distribute it and how to get it out there,
but what specific stuff do you give an influencer, whether
they’re on a college campus or not? Are you sending them an email
with here are attachments and talking points of
what to talk about Tinder? Let’s get real specific
about what do you give them? SEAN RAD: So we first and
foremost supplied them with a very simple way to
describe the value proposition, something that resonates
with their friends. Meaning, they might
look at the product and sort of feel the
benefits and understand it but articulating those
benefits is a science. And so we had effective
ways of articulating it and we sort of supplied
these reps with the language. And sort of guided
them on the best ways to just verbalize their
thoughts in explaining it to their friends. And then from
there giving them– I don’t want to get into details
as far as like what is it that we do because that
would kind of give away parts of our secret sauce– but
there is sort of a playbook that we had on college campuses. One of the things that we would
do, I’ll give you one example. Sororities and fraternities
have Monday night dinners where basically everyone in
the sorority or fraternity is present and there’s various
announcements and whatnot. We went into the
sorority and fraternity dinners disguised as students. We told the sororities– JOHN: Did you wear
the whole gear, everything, like a hoodie? SEAN RAD: It wasn’t me. It was our team and my partner. JOHN: That must have
been a fun assignment. I would have loved to
join the Tinder team just for that assignment. SEAN RAD: It was– JOHN: John, we’re putting
you into a fraternity. SEAN RAD: There were
some funny stories there. But basically, we would
go to the sororities and say, hey, the guys
at the fraternities are swiping on Tinder right now. You should get on it. And then we do vice versa. We’d have girls go visit the
guys and guys visit the girls. And it would sort of
just create this ruckus. So every time we
would do that there would be like an instant
150 user, 300 user bump. And I know it doesn’t
sound like a lot, I mean right now we had more
than multiple college campuses and users a day. But 200, 300 users
when we just launched– JOHN: And how long
ago was this, Sean? This is only about a year ago? SEAN RAD: This is a year,
over year and a half. JOHN: Isn’t that
amazing that just a year ago just these
little 100 sign ups there, they just grow into
what it is today. SEAN RAD: It’s amazing. And what happened was– so we
did a lot on college campuses. We threw events,
we threw parties. Again, when you have
the right crowd, you have the right social
influencers, it helps. We threw parties where
you couldn’t get access to the parties unless you
had Tinder on your phone. And you have to show the
bouncer that you were actually active on Tinder. What really happened, and
this was the tipping point, we hit 20,000 users in
January of last year. And everyone left
for college break. Winter break? Everyone left for winter
break and they went home and they started
telling their friends, and they started telling
their older brothers, younger brothers, younger
sisters, whatever. And from January 1st
we have 20,000 users. On January 30th we
had 500,000 users. And this is all organic. There is nothing we did
outside of supplying the reps– outside of basically
identifying and encouraging people to be our
advocates, and sort of finding that patient zero
and then enabling patient zero to express themselves. And I think for all
of you guys, if you have a product
that if you really understand who your
customer is, it will help you identify who
that sort of key influencer is. And it doesn’t need
to be a celebrity. It doesn’t need to
be somebody who’s recognizable to the masses. It could be somebody who’s
recognizable to just like a core subset of your user base. Somebody who’s
influential there. And having that person promote
your product and believe in it. I mean frankly, there’s no
substitute for bad products. So you actually have to have a
product that works and is good, right? But having that person, I
think, is going give you invaluable feedback, it’s going
to make all the difference, at least for Tinder it
made all the difference. And again, it’s not,
when you’re growing, it’s not about quantity. I mean, there are plenty of
apps that shoot up to the top 10 and the day after are just
gone, right, from the top. Actually there’s
a famous app that just launched that, I’ll just
say it, Slingshot, right? It’s just like I was looking
at the app store today. I’m like, where’s Slingshot? I can’t even find it. And it was like top 10
and like literally it’s not even in the top
300, or the top 200. And I think it’s a
perfect example, right? If you look at our growth, we
didn’t have many fluctuations. It was like we were consistently
in like the top 100, and then consistently
in like the top 75, and then consistently
in the top 50. And it’s more powerful
because our users, if you look at our DAU to MAU
ratio, it’s incredibly strong. If you look at the engagement
that we have every single day, it’s incred– I
mean, our users spend an average of 77 minutes
a day in the app. And we get a billion
swipes every single day. And we create over
12 million matches. We would never get– I
mean, even if you gave me like a billion email
addresses, and I emailed a billion
email addresses, I don’t think we would get
to where we’re at today. I think there’s these social
norms that have to develop, the product has to
grow organically, there’s a language
that builds over time, and how you launch these
things are very important. JOHN: That’s awesome. Sean, I think you’ve done so
many smart things, like holding back on having celebrities
tweet before it was too soon to obviously set up
these influencer programs and reaching out, but what’s
something that you look back on and you’re like, hmm,
maybe I shouldn’t have done that, maybe
it was a mistake. You’re obviously
more experienced now than you were a year ago. SEAN RAD: I make
mistakes every day. I mean, I go back to yesterday,
probably made like 10 mistakes. I think great leaders
and great innovators make mistakes every
day but learn from them and not only improve
themselves but improve everyone around them as a result
of those mistakes. So it’s a tough question only
because there’s like 100 things that I can think of. When it comes to distribution
though, a mistake that we made. I think we underestimated how
popular Tinder would become. And I can’t explain
how stressful it was in the first three months
when we’re growing like this and our prototype code is
just crashing left and right. And it’s stressful when
you’re sort of just trying to get attention. When you have all the
attention and then some and you have everything
to lose, that’s a different kind of stress. And believe me, it
keeps you up at night just probably even more than
not having a lot of attention and trying to get customers. Once you have a lot of customers
and you have everything to lose, the way you think
about the world really changes. I think the biggest
mistake that we made, and maybe it’s not a
mistake in retrospect because it maybe would
have impacted other things, is I probably would
have encouraged our team to take a little
more care in the code and basically design
it for scale day one versus, you always
hear about MVP, MVP this, MVP that,
and everyone’s just trying to get the
product out there. I think they’re defining
what that MVP is is the trick and really understanding what
are the benchmarks of success and are you prepared
for each benchmark. What are the benchmarks,
not only of success from a technical standpoint,
but from a product standpoint? Understanding like what
is it that you’re truly trying to accomplish? And have you sort of put a
check mark on the truly minimal things that you need to sort of
create an experience that I’m willing to tell my friends
who then is willing to tell somebody else and then
we’re able to extract the core value of Tinder. So I think one of the
things that I wouldn’t say we drastically
underestimated what that MVP was, we
sort of underestimated it. And there was a
point in January when we were growing
like this– we went from 20,000 to 500,000
almost overnight– where I was literally like,
OK, we’re going to have, like we had maybe 30
minutes of down time, which is amazing in retrospect. But I was like at any
minute, everything is just going to
collapse and we’re going to be down for 24 hours
because this architecture has its bottleneck and
won’t go past that. And hard work can’t solve it. And we recover– I
mean, that didn’t happen because we were
maintaining our existing code base while we were
sort of, we were like rebuilding the plane
while it was flying in the air at like tens of
thousands of feet. And it was stressful
but we got through it. So I think in retrospect I would
have planned a little bit more for success. JOHN: That’s fantastic. Thanks for being so
open about it that. So I want to open
it up to you guys to be able to ask
questions because I think the most amazing thing
about this journey is that, Sean, it could be
one of you guys in this seat next year. Just a year, what
a difference makes when you’re smart about how
to develop and distribute your product. So Sean, thank you so
much for joining us. And then we’ll pass around the
mic to open it up to you guys. If you guys have any questions. SEAN RAD: I guess
I’m really boring. Shit. JOHN: Or maybe you just
answered all the questions. Yeah. AUDIENCE: Hey, Sean. SEAN RAD: Hey, how are you, man? AUDIENCE: Could
you tell us what– I mean as you’ve
grown into this stage and as you said kind of
where you were two years ago, or year and a half ago, to where
you are today, your mind has shifted and into the
challenges that you have. What are the challenges
that you all face today as you’ve grown to, did you
say a billion swipes a day? SEAN RAD: A day, yeah. A billion swipes a day. AUDIENCE: What are the things
that you lose sleep over today? SEAN RAD: I lose
sleep over right now is recruiting the
best minds to join us. People who understand our
vision, believe in it, and sort of have
unique talents that we require to sort of get there. Right now it’s all about
scale, scale, scale. There was a period of time
where– I still to this day I hate large teams. I don’t think I know anyone
who likes large teams. JOHN: How big is
the Tinder team now? SEAN RAD: Right now
the team’s 40 people. And we’ve sort of
hit this point where it’s like we can’t
stay small anymore because shit’s breaking. And we’re recruiting but
as much as there’s a need to bring in help,
I’m trying my hardest to sort of keep the
bar on excellence on who we bring in very high. And we’re slow to
hire because we’re so careful that every
person who comes in understands sort of our core
principles, our culture, and has the curiosity
and the talent that’s needed to propel us forward. Finding great people is the
hardest thing in the world. I mean it’s people. What builds great
companies are people. And what got us
here are great minds that I was fortunate enough
to surround myself with. And what will usher us into
the future is the same thing. So if anyone’s
looking, if anyone’s looking to join an awesome
team, come talk to me, please. AUDIENCE: Hi, Sean. Oh, here. Can you hear me? SEAN RAD: Yeah. AUDIENCE: I want to ask
you how do you guys– JOHN: I can’t year you. Could you move the mic up? AUDIENCE: Can you hear me now? How did you guys deal
with competition? Because there’s a lot of
apps similar to Tinder in the markets, that were in the
market for quite a long time. So like what were your goals
in trying to like overcome? SEAN RAD: The competition? AUDIENCE: Yeah. SEAN RAD: Honestly,
we till this day, I can confidently
say we don’t give a shit about the competition. The reason– but
it’s not because. Like actually, we do
look at the competition to see where we can learn. But the reason we don’t care is
we have our own vision of where we want to be and
what others are doing is irrelevant to that. We have a roadmap. Like I have a list so long
of what I want to accomplish. And you go to everyone
in the company and it’s like they’ve
got their list and together we’re
prioritizing, sort of building this roadmap that
gets us closer to our vision. And the competition
in some cases could help you
figure out what are the right steps through
their own experiences that you can learn
from as a bystander. But ultimately, at the end
of the day, what builds great companies is sort of
a very common understanding amongst great people that
are working with you on where you want to be and what
it takes to get there. And there are a lot
of people at Tinder who put a lot of time and energy
into thinking about those steps and analyzing what
did we do, sometimes we unknowingly did it, that
brought us to where we are. And that knowledge is
knowledge that the competition doesn’t have. The passion that we
have and the investment we’ve made in sort of getting
to our ultimate vision is an investment a lot of
times copycats haven’t made. And that’s why they
just drop like flies. And I’m still waiting
for a viable competitor, like somebody who’s not
like we’re literally going to take an x, a
heart, a stack of cards, and put people in it
and just let you swipe, because that’s not
what Tinder is. There’s a lot under
the hood, there’s a lot more science behind it. But like there’s certainly a lot
of competition who does that. But I’m still
waiting for somebody who’s sort of not
thinking about Tinder but thinking about the problem
that we’re trying to solve and is going to come up
with a unique solution. And that somebody
I want to talk to. But it’s about
identifying the problem. And our solution is
just one solution. There are potentially 100
ways to solve the problems that we have. But what makes a
company is everyone is unified around what that
vision is and what is it that you’re trying to
deliver to your customers. And I think we know
that very well. And that is where we compete,
not in the product and the user base but in a team who
understands what they’re doing. JOHN: Fantastic. SEAN RAD: What’s up? AUDIENCE: Hi, thanks for coming. My name’s Al. Tinder specific
strategy question. You swipe right, a
couple moments later you have a chat line open up. How do you personally start
your Tinder conversations? JOHN: The most pressing
question of the day. SEAN RAD: So it’s easier for
me because I could ask, hey, how are you liking Tinder? And everyone wants to tell
me about their experiences. But that’s a great question. I struggled with that. A lot of people
struggle with that. And what we realized is we did
a really good job of helping you say hi, like
connect with somebody, and then we created
another problem which is we’ve now create
2 billion total matches and that’s growing. And people sort of
don’t know what to say. Now that they’re
in front of someone they know that that person’s
interested in them back. And the tools to
get to know somebody are very primitive
in my opinion. And then the tools
to express yourself are also primitive, at least on
Tinder they’re very primitive. So moments. We just launched moments. And the idea behind moments was
to solve that exact problem. What you say could be something
that’s in response to a moment that that person has expressed
or shared with their followers. And so I think the
best answer I would say is like pay attention to who
the person is in their profile and what they’re
trying to convey and then what they’re
trying to convey in the moment, in their moments,
and have a response that’s personal that’s related to that. Hay is for horses, hey’s
work actually on Tinder, but probably aren’t
going to help you get closer to an individual. But starting with something
that’s more personal probably is my best advice,
and it works, that works best. JOHN: Awesome. AUDIENCE: Hi, thanks for coming. This is maybe more of–
based on your users, have you seen may
perhaps a cultural shift in dating culture in general? Or maybe a lack of bias? Because there used to be a lot
of bias towards internet dating and now people seem to be more– SEAN RAD: Yeah. I think there’s been a stigma
around online or mobile dating. I actually don’t even
think about Tinder as online or mobile dating. I think about Tinder
as solving a problem that we all face, whether it’s
offline or online, or anywhere. And it’s a psychological, it’s a
human issue that we’re solving. And again, we’re not
building a directory. Were sort of helping to
solve the question of is that person interested in me? Should I approach them? Should I not approach them? Is their context there? And that is a
problem that exists in romantic relationships,
business relationships, friendships, anything,
and it’s something that Tinder is solving. And I think there’s
another set of problems that other products are solving
which aren’t necessarily what Tinder is doing. Have we seen a shift in sort
of just the overall attitude towards using an app
to meet somebody? Yes. I think if you look at the
user base that we have, which is growing
incredibly fast, and you actually just
once we survey those users and actually compare
them to other data that we have through
some of our partners, there is a vast
majority of our users are new entrants into the space. Right? These are people who are
this is their first app for social discovery, this
is their first platform that they’re using to do that. They haven’t necessarily
used a new product in the past, another
product in the past. And I think, so yeah, I think
we are making a change as far as people’s attitudes
towards using these tools. I think we’re also making
a change in society. Making 2 billion connections
in less than a year and a half has, I hope, has
changed society. I hope has provided
a lot of life altering value for a
lot of people out there. And I hope it’s made it easier
and more fun to meet people. And that was our goal and
I think we’re doing it. JOHN: Are you going to be the
best man at any Tinder weddings coming up? That’d be the day. SEAN RAD: I’ve been
invited to more weddings than I could possibly attend. But I’m too busy trying to help
create other weddings to go to any of the ones
that I’m invited to. JOHN: Well said, well said. I think we have one
more question there. AUDIENCE: Hi Sean, thanks
so much for coming. SEAN RAD: Thank you. AUDIENCE: So two
questions for you. First is can you talk a little
bit about your experience. Like have you built
other companies and how has that influenced
the trajectory of Tinder? And then the other one
is I know you’re Persian, we’re Persian as well. I’m just wondering how
that’s at all influenced the inspiration or
the idea for this app? SEAN RAD: OK, I’ll answer the
first question then the second. OK, the first question. So let me come back
to the first question. Because now you got me thinking
about the Persian thing. Has that helped? JOHN: Perhaps you’re
operating in your childhood. SEAN RAD: I mean, I think I
come from a family of immigrants who were encouraged
as children and then encouraged me to do
the most with my life. Because you look at immigrants
like they had to make the most and sort of achieve
high goals in order to survive and
assimilate into culture. And they had to
be high achievers. And I think my
parents definitely pushed me to do the
most that I can. And I think that that’s
definitely given me a sense of drive and
a sense of purpose. I don’t know if it’s because
I have a family of immigrants or just my family
themselves and maybe there are other families
who do this too, but I think definitely my
parents have impacted me. And they are
entrepreneurs as well and they’ve sort of achieved
great things in their lives. And watching them
has inspired me. What was the first question? AUDIENCE: Do you have other
experiences from the past, like building other
businesses that, yeah. SEAN RAD: So the common thread–
so this is my third company. My last company was Adly,
which sort of started celebrity endorsements in social media. So pretty much if a
celebrity endorses a brand and gets paid for it, it
probably comes through Adly. Sorry if you don’t like that. And then my last company was a
unified communications company called Orgoo and we took
all your email accounts, instant messaging,
all the ways people communicated integrated
into one platform. The common thread across
all of that and Tinder is that I am so
passionate and curious about how we
communicate as humans. How do we express ourselves? And frankly, simplifying
and sort of just like breaking down the
barriers in communication. And my last two companies
were more utilities. So how do I actually enhance
my communication tools and how do I as a brand
communicate a message to an audience. Tinder, I think is less
of a utility and more of how do I solve just
like– how do I break down some of the social norms that
we’ve developed as a society and how do we work around
them to sort of enhance communication and bring
people closer together? But there are
underlying utilities as well that we’re building
to sort of do that. But it’s more of the context and
the ecosystem that we’ve built. But yeah, the common thread
throughout all these companies have been an interest
in communication and the people around me
that have sort of shared that passion and interest. And then I’ve learned a lot. I mean, like I said, I
make mistakes every day. I fail in a small way and
sometimes in a big way all the time. But the beauty of
failing is if you’re open to admitting the
failure and learning from it, you probably won’t fail
again in that one department, and you’ll know what
to expect next time and that just makes
you stronger and more accurate with the
risks that you take. So it’s definitely
impacted what I’ve done and the way I look at the world. JOHN: Awesome. So with that I just want
to thank Sean for his time. SEAN RAD: Thanks for
having me, thanks guys. JOHN: It was a pleasure. Awesome. SEAN RAD: Thanks. JOHN: Thanks, guys.

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7 thoughts on “Google I/O 2014 – How Tinder caught fire & how your app can too: Sean Rad

  1. How can I get my own Google glass for free. Im disabled and dont have much money or a lap-top. Everything I do is on a 3inch screen. Gives me a headache. Might be worth it I have created alot of circles and stars

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