Tinder Makes a Pivot in Thailand with ‘Friends with (Other) Benefits.’

Tinder has launched a new campaign in Thailand aiming to reposition the brand as a social app beyond dating. The clever campaign from Wunderman Thompson Thailand is the culmination of research that showed that those with the highest interest in the app were using it for non-dating and non-sexual purposes.

“The first thing I did when I found out we were pitching for Tinder, I asked my wife’s permission to download the app. She said to me, ‘please behave, no one-night stands allowed’,” says Wunderman Thompson’s Executive Creative Director, Thasorn Boonyanate.

For years, Tinder had been established as a dating app with a stereotype of finding one-night stands and friends with benefits. This reputation posed a challenge for recruiting new users in Thailand, where research showed that Gen Z is the most likely group to quit the app within one week for not wanting to participate in hookup culture.


Tinder needed to change its perception and positioning to the Thai Gen Z – as a social app that offers more value beyond just dating and hooking up.

“Our goal is to show Gen Z users just how endless the possibilities are for forming meaningful relationships on the app, platonic or otherwise.”

For the winning pitch of redefining Tinder, Wunderman Thompson Thailand dug deep into the Gen Z’s user data. What they found was that this group of users was more interested in finding platonic friendships through the app, not just the stereotypical friends with benefits.

Based on this insight, the agency came up with the idea “Friends with (Other) Benefits”, or in Thai “Puen Sampan” which twists the word for “sex” into a brand new word for “friendship”. The aim is to capitalize on the emerging trend as a new attraction for the Gen Z audience to give Tinder another chance.


The result was the funny minute and a half film. Friends with benefits? Na. How about Friends with board games? That works. Friends with boba tea? Even better. One nightstand? Don’t think so, but one-night street food will do the trick.


In less than one week, the launch film received over 9 million views and the campaign line “Puen Sampan” started trending on social media.

“Our goal is to show Gen Z users just how endless the possibilities are for forming meaningful relationships on the app, platonic or otherwise. In my research, I found that young people have very diverse passions, from gaming, surf skating, discovering new restaurants and bars, to fangirling over Korean actors.” says Boonyanate.

“I knew immediately that’s what Tinder should be about in the year 2021, an app that multiplies your love for life by matching you with new friends who share and expand your passions, real friends with long-term ‘benefits’ who are here to stay and may even develop these connections into romance that’s not based on mere physical attraction. We believe this is the way forward for Tinder to reach beyond traditional dating.”

The campaign for “Friends with (Other) Benefits”/“Puen Sampan” continues through January 2021.


Agency: Wunderman Thompson, Thailand
Chief Creative Officer: João Braga
Chief Executive Officer: Maureen Tan
Executive Creative Director: Thasorn Boonyanate
Copywriter: Supalerk Silarangsri, Supanat Wachiralappaitoon, Thasorn Boonyanate
Art Director : Supachok Tiyakunpugdee, Wasutorn Techawitoon, Natnari Nimudomsuk
Producer: Jiraporn Channawach, Jiroj Mechoojit
Account Director : Rynrada Pisawongprakarn
Account Executive: Pufah Nuntavisit

Production House: Unboxnow
Director: Littichai Siriprasitpong
Director of Photography: T-Thawat Taifayongvichit
Producer: Arunwan So

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