CMO 50: George Felix

Chief marketing officer, Tinder

Dating apps were on fire during the pandemic as singles sought virtual ways to mingle. Tinder, the OG dating app, benefitted from the spike. Conversations in the app lasted on average 32% longer than pre-pandemic, and people matched 42% more than before as they swiped more at home. 

Tinder adapted to the shift with campaigns focused on COVID-19 safety. The dating app partnered with medical testing company Everlywell to give 500 users free mail-in COVID-19 test kits — one for them and another for their match. As vaccines rolled out, Tinder shifted to promoting in person dating, teaming up with Lyft to allow Tinder users to gift a ride to their dates.

In April, Tinder swiped right on George Felix as chief marketing officer, with a mandate to appeal to the dating scene’s newest audience: Gen Z. He replaced Jenny Campbell, who left Tinder in November to join Kate Spade. The tech and lifestyle scene is new for Felix, who has an impressive pedigree in CPG and QSR marketing. As director of marketing for KFC, he oversaw the popular The Return of Colonel Sanders campaign, and as CMO of Pizza Hut, he brought the Newstalgia campaign to the Super Bowl. Felix also had a six-year tenure at Procter & Gamble, where he led advertising for Old Spice. His experience is sure to bring a unique spin on the dating app’s marketing approach.

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