1 week, 1 day ago

Tinder + Instagram = Profit (..apparently)

Hugo (all names are made up) is a Tinderfella who uses Tinder solely for the purpose of gaining Instagram followers without any intention of meeting his matches. His unashamed jollity surprised me. Is this actually a thing?

After hovering around campus for several days and questioning every student who walked past, I finally got some answers: Hugo is certainly not alone. Perhaps the idea of finding true love through swiping right is already too archaic for the 21st century, so, like Hugo, we adapt.

I find Emma first: “I downloaded Tinder in my first year of Uni. I just wanted to go on a few dates, meet some people, maybe a free dinner. One of my matches had put his Instagram handle on his profile, and I had followed him on it, mostly to see more than the standard five images Tinder allows. I added my own handle after I’d seen a few more matches with the same. It only took about a month before I had doubled my views and followers.”

Emma pulls out her scrunchie and reties her hair, “I don’t actively go in search of them, it just sort of happens.”

Where Emma welcomes the lucky coincidence, Felicity got a bit more creative with her accidental source of followers.

Felicity: “My housemate met her current boyfriend on Tinder and always says how great it was, so I thought I’d try it out. I chatted to quite a few people, but was always too shy to actually meet up with anyone.”

Felicity shrugs, “I just think it wasn’t my thing. But I would chat with matches, add them on Facebook, Whatsapp, and eventually Instagram. I have my own beauty blog and do lots of postings on Instagram about it. A few more followers and likes never hurt. I know most of them are just doing it for my looks, or to try and pull, but I get more shares out of it, so I’m happy. I don’t feel like I’m leading them on, I tell them all about my blog and encourage them to follow me. They’re the ones who might presume they’ll get more out of it if they do.”

The art of swiping for followers has become so popular that some blogs and websites even advise how to make the most of your Tinder account, such as Lisa Price’s online blog, the gist of her advice being:

1. Swipe right on everyone.

2. Everyone includes same-sex matches too (I assume it's the opposite if you're gay, but she fails to mention it).

3. Remember to put your Instagram name on your profile before you go crazy swiping.

4. Take out the part about you "not looking for hookups."

5. Communication time? Don't respond. You've already promoted yourself. Well done.

Does it become more astonishing when you see the instructions written (or typed) down in black and white? It is shocking, but something we should get used to now that Tinder has become more than a dating site. It's yet another form of social media, another platform to promote yourself (or even your business in some cases).

Greg is brazen with his unorthodox approach to Tinder: “I’m trying to build my reputation as a model. It’s expensive to pay for head shots, adverts, and as a student, I just don’t have the time to spend every day searching for gigs. One of the girls I know mentioned how she uses Tinder to get followers on her Instagram, so I tried, and it worked. I swipe right on everyone, get quite a few matches, some of whom I do hook up with.” He grins, “only after they follow and favourite me of course. I’m not trying to hide it. This is what I do. I need to do it for my business, and it works. I’m averaging a follower a day. I’m hoping it will grow.”

Social media is there for promotion and communication, can we blame people for using it to their advantage? I think not. Alas, Tinder is now a cheap alternative to buying your followers, unless you end up paying for dinner.

#tyro #PULL #tinder #NORM