• Transform magazine
  • January 20, 2020

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Escaping the dating apocalypse

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Today, finding a date is as easy as swiping right on an online dating app. Though there have been accounts of successful relationships using such platforms, many users today have begun to lose hope in today’s digital dating scene, swiping to no avail.

Dating app Hinge, in collaboration with advertising agency Red Antler, has introduced its new rebrand and updated app with the launch of the Dating Apocalypse, an animated campaign touching on the stereotypical horrors of the modern online dating culture. Created by New York based digital production company the STUDIO, the campaign relates to many modern day swipers who are looking for more than just a hookup.

Hinge’s mission, according to its website, is to create ‘Meaningful connections among those bold enough to seek real relationships.’ The campaign distinguishes Hinge from competitors by highlighting the possibilities of the app’s swipeless dating feature in contrast to the rather bleak landscape of the predominant online dating scene. The new app encourages human engagement and breaks away from the dehumanizing trend of swiping, resulting in more than 50% of all matches resulting in conversation as opposed to the 15% figure beforehand. To reflect this, Hinge has branded itself as an escape from the ‘Dating Apocalypse,’ a term coined by Vanity Fair last year.

The campaign, which takes place at the ‘Date-O-Pocalypse’ carnival, takes a jab at the possible consequences of online dating with tongue-in-cheek attractions including the Cycle of Loneliness, Catch a Catfish and the One Nighter. The soundtrack, ‘What About Love’ by Heart, plays in the background as the protagonist of the story, who has forgotten how to engage with people other than swiping, wanders aimlessly through the carnival in search of love. He manages to escape through a door leading to the ‘Hinge World,’ where he finally finds a girl with whom he can establish a real relationship.

Mary Nittolo, founder and CCO of the STUDIO, says, “It was extraordinary to have a project where we had the opportunity to create parallel universes - the dysphoric world of compulsive and unfulfilled relationships and the idealized place where real connection happens. After we were locked on the animation, the Hinge team suggested adding the references to iconic film romances. They were a brilliant touch - they added a delightful, fairy tale feel to the Hinge world. The Hinge team were amazing clients. At one of the reviews, Katie Hunt, Hinge’s CBO, was actually moved to tears.”

STUDIO also collaborated with HINGE to create social media content including memes, GIFs, videos and a press kit with a map of the Date-O-Pocalypse carnival and a ticket to “escape the games and find something real.”