Faint heart never won fair lady helping the nation find love in lockdown

Client: eharmony

Agency: The Specialist Works

When the UK went into lockdown, eharmony saw a 25% drop in site traffic. Not surprising, considering that going on a date had become a criminal offence overnight. It was a scary time for everyone and investing while registrations were falling was especially daunting. But we knew that having relevant conversations with customers during the crisis would lay the foundations for success on the other side. eharmony is a cautious brand, but what had previously worked for them wasn't working now. So, we decided to be brave and tear up the rule book. Unprecedented times called for an unprecedented strategy. eharmony built a new virtual dating product in just four weeks, and we tested audiences, channels, programmes, regions, creative and dayparts that we'd never tried before. eharmony wasn't the only business struggling – advertisers, agencies and media owners were all feeling the pain. By bringing eharmony and the salehouses together, we were able to deliver enough value to allow eharmony to profitably navigate through this challenging time. It paid off. All metrics fully recovered from the fall in March, above and beyond where they were pre-COVID, with app registrations increasing by 85% YoY Jan-Jun 2020. A significant proportion of new customers included younger people that hadn't previously considered eharmony. While key workers were the heroes during this crisis, with just 7% of brands seizing the opportunity to invest in marketing during COVID-19, it took an adventurous client to change strategy, launch a new product and continue investing.