A new European campaign from Bumble, the female-first dating app, portrays one woman's "dating journey" in all its messy reality, showing that you don't necessarily find your true love the first time around and that dating can be a way to explore and have fun.
It's the first work for the brand from 72andSunny Amsterdam, which began working with the brand this summer. The TV spot aims to portray a realistic snapshot of dating, with the message that sometimes you might need to change your expectations and "date on your own terms."
The ad centers on a young woman dating over a period of time with several different men. It revisits relatable moments, including the woman laughing with her friends over her choice of profile photo, cooking for a date for the first time and brushing her teeth with her finger when she first spends the night. Other scenes find her realizing that perhaps she's not compatible with the person she's matched with and show her gossiping with friends about how her date went. The spot was directed by Stockholm-based Sheila Johansson via New Land.
The campaign comes as the brand encourages women to discover what they want from dating and potential partners. It was influenced by research by Bumble into how women approach dating in 2021. It found that while single people are feeling more confident about what they want in a partner, they are not limiting themselves to predetermined dating ”goals.” In the U.K. 32% of people would describe their approach to dating as “exploratory,” and 70% would go on up to four dates a week in order to meet as many people as possible.
“There is no right or wrong way to date and dating in itself is something to be celebrated," said Naomi Walkland, Bumble's vice president for Europe, Middle East and Africa. "Often, it's only in retrospect that we realize how much we discovered about ourselves in the process of dating and how the dates, both good and bad, were part of getting to know what we want. We’re seeing that the pandemic has forced people to reflect a lot and they are approaching dating in a different, more exploratory and less rigid way. We wanted to celebrate this with our campaign and encourage women to own their journey.”
“Society tells us we’re supposed to love being in a relationship and hate everything that happens in between,” adds Laura Visco, executive creative director at 72andSunny Amsterdam, who herself met her partner on Bumble. “As women, we are hard-wired to dislike everything that doesn't end in a long-term relationship. There’s already so much that we need to figure out in life that we wanted to bring some levity to dating—we all need to reframe what that journey looks like, and the beautiful messiness it brings, that makes it worth living."
The TV campaign debuted in Germany with further countries to follow in the coming weeks, including France, the U.K., The Netherlands, Sweden and Israel.
Bumble would not comment on whether 72andSunny had been appointed on a permanent basis but a spokesperson said: "We're excited about the work we've produced with 72andSunny Amsterdam and hopefully we'll be able to do more and continue to challenge the expectations around dating, encouraging women to enjoy and own their dating journeys."