What does it take to monetize over 2 million daily active users in 196 countries? Join Grindr CTO Lukas Sliwka and VB analyst Jon Cifuentes in a free webinar to get an inside scoop on how mobile app analytics solutions help you powerfully leverage critical user data.
Grindr, the first and largest gay dating site in the world, has 5 to 6 million monthly active users and 2.4 million daily active users. At any given time, there are over a million users active on the platform, says Lukas Sliwka, the company’s CTO.
Those users are a rich and crucial source of data as Grindr continues to grow its popularity with current clients and expand its reach globally. “From a business perspective,” Sliwka says, “It’s critical for us to know what features are working — and why — and how the app is being used in the wild to make the right product decisions.”
It’s how Grindr is continuing to expand its business model by introducing value-add services, transforming itself into a broader gay lifestyle platform. “We can finally do that,” he notes, “because the maturity of our organization and our data science is at the point where we can start answering some pretty interesting questions.”
Analyzing and data mining chat transcripts revealed that their users were already starting to use Grindr in new ways — interacting with people around them, asking for travel and accommodation advice, and widely socializing. Those revelations are driving Grindr’s product decisions in terms of which new features are added, and when.
“You need to make choices about where you direct your resources,” Sliwka says about their raw data findings. For instance, their scrutiny of user analytics across the globe revealed that Brazil is one of the fastest-growing markets, particularly in recent months. This has allowed them to pivot to focus on location-specific marketing and pricing analytics to drive business there.
“From the monetization perspective,” Sliwka continues, “we need to keep an eye on whether the subscription model is effective.” They look at revenue metrics in terms of subscriptions, which include terms of one month, three months, six months and 12 months.
“One surprise was how popular our 12-month subscription was,” he notes. The assumption was that in a dating space, the subscription pattern they’d find would be cyclical as users dated, found a mate, and ended their subscription. But what they found instead is that the year-long subscriptions are far and away the most popular.
Says Sliwkas, “It points to the fact that Grindr isn’t just used for finding a mate, but as a social platform as well.” And that data adds even more ammunition to their arsenal as they make a major push toward becoming a gay lifestyle destination.
The tools to power those analytics bring their own set of issues. “The most annoying thing on the engineering side is that it seems that almost every month another vendor pops up,” Sliwka says. “Then business people pop up, and say ‘Oh my god — I love their dashboard, they’re doing something interesting, I want you to put this SDK into an app.’”
And that’s the way you can quickly end up bloated with far too many SDKs from a wildly different bunch of companies, all gathering similar data and offering performance issue in return.
While hunting for the best technology platform is essential, this throw-everything-into-the mix approach also introduces a lot of security risk, Sliwka emphasizes. It can also mean losing control of your data pipeline. Too many analytics platforms siphon data off, then deliver aggregates rather than raw data.
“What we decided was that we really wanted to put our foot down and standardize our ecosystem,” Sliwka says. “We need to own the pipeline on both the server side and the client side, and we want to own all that data.
Sliwka will be joining VB analyst Jon Cifuentes who will be sharing the important findings of VB Insight’s recent report on app analytics and what solutions are fueling the most successful apps.
Don’t miss out!
What you’ll learn:
- The top app analytics solutions
- The most important features in an analytics platform
- The KPIs that matter to the most successful developers
- The most overlooked app analytics methods
Lukas Sliwka, CTO, Grindr
Jon Cifuentes, Research Analyst, VB Insight
Wendy Schuchart, Moderator, VentureBeat