Like tinder, but to find friends.



How do you make a friend on purpose?

Seriously. Ask yourself if you can purposefully meet a new friend without coming on too strong.

During the height of the pandemic a client wanted to tackle this question. What resulted was a fun, easy to use, and safe chat platform that let people make new friends on purpose.

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Style/Vibe 1st. Profile Pictures 2nd

The client wanted this to be a swipe experience similar to Tinder. But when you're making new friends, you don't care about the looks as much as you care about their personality. This is why I pushed to remove profile pictures until you actually meet in the chats. Before then, you only get to see people's opinions on things like favorite TV shows, and their interests. To take it one step further, we wanted to let people share their personality by choosing a color and a font on their answer cards.

Just because you like the same TV show doesn't mean they're a good friend-candidate. So each candidate would randomly appear with a few answers before a decision was made. Then the match score would be weighted more heavily depending on their activity in the group chats (if people who you liked chatting with also like this person) to determine more matches.

Timed Group Chats

The first big decision was that 1 on 1 discussions would bring too much pressure. Putting people in group chats would take the edge off and let people jump into the discussion as they wanted to. The other angle was making the chats timed. This made it where if a conversation wasn't panning out, the discussion would end without the awkward "I don't like you's"

Chat Intros & Ongoing Pushes

Instead of the awkward "what do we talk about" items, whenever a new chat starts, the app's concierge would share each person's interests one by one. Then it would kick it off with an engaging "name this chat" which would bring a group decision along with an easy way for people to share their personalities. Then, whenever the chat dies down the bot would pop in and bring up a random person's interests which would kick off new discussions.

Chance Encounters

When you make a friend, you have an initial meet usually through activities or friends of friends. Then you have random encounters with them over time that lets you get to know each other over time without the pressure of "tell me about your life. GO!" we simulated this in the app by letting people extend group chats if they wanted, but once a chat ended, you'd be asked to rate how much you want to liked the other people. These were private votes and if you and another person voted favorably of each other you'd be likely placed into future group chats with each other along with others you or the other person voted favorably effectively bringing the "friends of friends" nature to the chats.

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