We caught up with Louise ahead of her appearance at Stylus presents Decoded Future London to talk human connections, empowerment and Bumble Bizz.
Please introduce yourself and talk through your background.
My name is Louise Troen and I run Bumble within the International markets. I work in tandem with the US to develop, and deliver Global campaigns that have universal resonance, and are Globally consistent with our brand USP. I oversee Bumbles' marketing, communications and strategic positioning in the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Australia. I also support with new market expansion and growth. Prior to Bumble, I worked in fashion communications helping to position and communicate the messaging and magic of brands such as Uniqlo and Converse. Prior to that I lived in Los Angeles were I was a talent publicist for various individuals. My career has spanned music, fashion and technology and my passion lies within strategic comms and brand positioning; delivering successful campaigns within an ever-growing crowded consumer market.
You’ve spoken before about the innate human desire to connect, but often technology is seen to hinder this. How do you think brands can use tech in their strategy to facilitate connections?
We launched an ecosystem that is rooted in a philosophy and is built on values. Respect, kindness, integrity.
Technology can’t learn those things and it also shouldn’t compromise those values. What technology can do is provide a productive, efficient and user friendly experience to ENABLE more human connections rooted in those values. We exist to increase and encourage empowering connections, and in order to foster that environment on the app we have to communicate it through everything we do - marketing, communications, brand, experiential, customer service. We pride ourselves on ensure all these channels are rooted in the values we want the platform to stand for - thus encouraging people on the app who respond to that. We spend majority of our time as a team focusing on how we can continue to create an environment and brand that people trust, that they feel safe connecting on. Technology should act as an enabler to increase or encourage productivity or likelihood of a kind and respectful interaction happening.
What are the main changes you have seen in consumer behaviour and browsing decisions?
People want to meet up as quickly as possible. We live in a time of instant gratification, of immediate consumption, and expected outcome. Where our users used to speak for days before confirming a time to meet, now we’re seeing this time increasingly decrease. We also know that our users want as much information on the potential match as possible - which is why we’re always evolving the product from an innovation point of view to give back to what our users want. We recently launched Instagram as part of the app, which a lot of our users wanted. We also got a lot of feedback from our users re safely and have several tools in place within the product to ensure our users feel as safe as possible when connecting online.
What is Bumble Bizz? And why did you think it was important to launch this platform?
Bumble Bizz is the third platform within the Bumble app where women make the first move for professional connections. Bumble Date is rooted in creating a safe and kind place for people to connect within romance. BFF is the same for connecting within platonic relationships. It was a natural evolution to create this within the business space too. We’re always looking at ways to innovate, and evolve the product - as well at listening to user feedback. Our users who were in relationships liked what we represented and wanted a chance to be part of the community. BFF and Bizz are perfect for this. We launched Bizz in October 2017 and we feel it was an important step for Bumble - there is no other space than the professional one where women need the tools to feel empowered to go after what they want, and feel safe in doing so.
A spotlight has been shone on women’s rights in the past year, but from the beginning Bumble was set to empower women in the dating space. What can brands do to ensure this is part of their culture and is incorporated into their strategies?
We ultimately have to implement change through regulation but it’s crucial we marry that with as much awareness as possible through Influential sources. It all starts with education and the best way to achieve this on a mass scale is through the power brands of this world.
Brands have a duty to use this power, reach and influence to raise awareness, to educate and engage consumers in the problems of inequality. They also have a duty to offer tools to help their consumers to feel part of the movement. When you buy a product, what do you learn from the label? Who is behind the senior leadership team and what events are they hosting to show how they’re tackling the issues internally as well as externally? What talent are involved in their campaigns that speak candidly to their audience on the issues? Do their marketing plans have a communications strategy that includes male publications as well as female? How does that differ in terms of messaging? We need to look at how we’re educating people, as well as with what information. The future generations are watching brands like us, Nike, Glossier and trusting the decisions that we make - we hold great responsibility and although with great responsibility comes great risk, it also has the potential of great reward.
Hear more from Louise at Stylus presents Decoded Future on 26th June. Discussing the 'evolution of the consumer', Louise will explore how to cater to new types of consumer behaviour alongside Jo Jackson, Chief Creative Officer, MADE.COM, Mark de Lange, Founder & CEO, Ace & Tate, Ben Stagg, Head of Client Management, Barclaycard and Hayley Ard, Head of Consumer Lifestyle, Stylus.
Reported by Mollie Lloyd