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Calvin Klein seduces Tinder users in brand?s latest jeans campaign

Calvin Klein is rolling out its first-ever campaign on the dating application Tinder, but the brand should beware of invasive advertising, as users on the app may not be as inclined to marketing in the same manner as on other platforms.  

The apparel manufacturer is launching its campaign for the fall 2015 line of Calvin Klein Jeans and is attempting to connect its ?sexy? brand image to the seductive appeal of the Tinder app. Many brands are leveraging the app due to the substantial amount of users, but the attempt may falter, as consumers are not using the app for the same purposes as other social channels, which could make ads seem intrusive. 

"If the campaign is not high quality and relevant it can hurt the brand on such a highly trafficked app," said Marci Troutman, CEO of SiteMinis, Atlanta, GA. "Choosing the correct partners in social media is important, ensuring that your brand is not being marketed on an inappropriate site is certainly important."

Matching with marketing 
For a brand to make an authentic and meaningful connection with users via Tinder, it needs to have a loyal following and content that consumers will be excited about and interested in. Calvin Klein?s campaign is attempting this by showcasing real-life love stories through images of conversations through SMS. 

Users on Tinder will see provocative images of models posing romantically together wearing Calvin Klein apparel. Within these images, message conversations are showcased, each displaying a different ?love? story. 

These love stories are less romantic and lean more toward casual encounters, which can appeal to the Tinder community, as it is becoming more known as a platform to hook-up rather than to meet a future spouse. While the content is interesting and tells a narrative that can draw in an audience, the content is still strictly advertising and does not offer an incentive for engaging with the ad. 


Users on Tinder are strictly on the app to search and discover individuals in their area interested in dating. Other social media platforms are used for a wider range of consumer behavior and are not so pigeonholed. 

Many other social media apps are used for shopping or brand information, and therefore users are more susceptible to marketing efforts. An app such as Tinder is not being used for these purposes and ads can seem intrusive.

Campaign comparision
Anheuser-Busch?s Bud Light brand leveraged the native video in Tinder to promote the return of its Whatever, USA contest, in which users get to show how ready they are to bring an up-for-anything attitude to a party town that was created somewhere in the United States (see more). Bud Light?s Whatever, USA is a campaign that consumers get excited about, especially the Tinder audience. 

The brand already has a loyal following, as well as the Whatever, USA campaign and its contest offers Tinder users a significant incentive for engaging with the ad. This is ideal usage of the app, but ultimately consumers will determine the success of the campaign. 

The Calvin Klein Jeans advertisements are also rolling out through digital publication Vice, as well as outside and print advertising. Calvin Klein's social media pages will be sharing the ads as well, and inciting a call to action with the hashtag #mycalvins hoping users will share posts on regarding the brands apparel and campaign. 

The apparel brand has never advertised through Tinder before and Calvin Klein feels as though its sultry nature can coincide well with the app, and resonate with users, which inspired the brand?s decision on advertising with Tinder. 

Marketers should focus on a variety of social platforms, and Snapchat may be a more successful platform to leverage than Tinder. 

For instance, spanish language network Univision leveraged the personalization of Snapchat?s live stories in a new partnership to increase awareness for major events and promote a positive brand sentiment by letting fans take over the experience (see more). 

"Calvin Klein is running a digital campaign that has a direct link to the dating and new social method of meeting others in this digital era," Ms. Troutman said. "With the use of other social interactivity, the #mycalvins call to action, which invites fans of the brand to actively participate in the social media campaign by posting a selfie of themselves wearing Calvin Klein, this campaign is sure to engage quite a few Tinder users. 

"Tinder is slowly rolling out advertising, meaning the brands that are working with them in the beginning are sure to gain results that should exceed their expectations," she said. "It is absolutely critical that brands using this type of social platform ensure that the content is relevant and high quality, when creating the campaign, as well as interlaced with other social media platforms such as FaceBook, Instagram and Twitter."

Final take
Brielle Jaekel is editorial assistant at Mobile Marketer