“Tinder babies” and the power of connecting people online and offline

Product Hunt Radio

0:00

38:42

Oct. 9, 2018, 9 p.m.

In this episode of Product Hunt Radio, I'm in Los Angeles talking to Brian Norgard and Jeff Morris Jr., both of whom may be indirectly responsible for a generation of “Tinder babies”.

Brian Norgard is an entrepreneur, investor, and Chief Product Officer at Tinder. He has worked on a number of other products and was Tinder's first acquisition. He collaborated with Sean Rad on an earlier app called Chill, which we discuss on the podcast. Brian is also an investor in Lyft, SpaceX and AngelList.

Jeff Morris Jr. is the Director of Product for Tinder's revenue initiatives. He previously worked at Zaarly and has created a number of products, including one stretch over three months where he built and launched three products, reaching the top of Product Hunt. He is also an investor in Lyft, CryptoKitties, Particle, Brat and others.

In this episode:

  • The joy of turning online connections into real-world connections. Jeff is great at this. He once went biking with Lance Armstrong in Hawaii after reaching out to Armstrong on Twitter.
  • How seemingly minor design decisions, like adding a subtle animation to a play button, can “nudge” users into a new pattern of behavior and make products more enjoyable to use.
  • Brian and Jeff discuss the design of Tinder Places, including the thoughtfulness that went into the privacy features of the product, and how they took inspiration from Foursquare.
  • We get nostalgic and discuss some of our favorite products from the past, like Chill and Highlight. They leveraged location on mobile in an attempt to merge the online and offline world.
  • Jeff tells the story of the time he reached out on Twitter about a job opportunity and less than 48 hours later had moved from San Francisco to Kansas City.
  • Why Product Hunt has gained a reputation as a positive, fun, and upbeat community and how subtle, very intentional design decisions — like our ridiculous Google Glass-sporting cat — contribute to the community and brand.

Of course, we also chat about some of their favorite products, including messaging apps, trivia games as well as a couple of now-obsolete apps that were onto something at the time but didn't end up taking off.

We’ll be back next week so be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Breaker, Overcast, or wherever you listen to your favorite podcasts. Also, big thanks to our sponsors, Airtable, GE Ventures, Intercom and Stripe for their support. 😸

Quotes from This Episode

“I like to respond to people who I shouldn't be taking to. I'll email people I shouldn't email. I don't care if they email me back. One in one hundred responses could change your life.” — Jeff

“Tinder's really a serendipity engine... It's one of the few experiences where you're actually leaning forward to meet someone you don't know.” — Brian

“[After he hired me via Twitter and a Skype interview] he said 'I'm in Kansas City, will you move here?' I packed my bags, got on a plane, moved to Kansas City and didn't go back to San Francisco for nine months. That was all from Twitter, within 48 hours.” — Jeff

“[When building products and communities ] follow the traffic anywhere. Things happen, a bunch of people aggregate, you find ways to give them unique value, and you reduce the friction because people are already there.” — Brian

“No one wants another copycat product in any category.” — Brian

Companies and Products Mentioned in This Episode

Chill (RIP) — A fast and fun way to communicate.

Discord — Free voice and text chat for gamers.

Highlight (RIP) — Find friends and new people nearby.

HQ Trivia — Live trivia game show by the founder of Vine.

Slack — Be less busy. Real-time messaging, archiving & search.

Telegram — Fast, encrypted messaging app.

Tinder Boost — Skip the line for 30 minutes to get more matches.

Tinder Places — Discover new people who hang where you hang.