Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

This rescue group successfully encouraged people to adopt pets… through a dating app?! [Friday: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]

March 22, 2024

What features in a dating profile would make you swipe right on a dating app?

A well-lit photo? 

A witty and interesting bio?

A cute smile?


What if that smile belonged to a “furry” someone with whiskers and big, brown puppy eyes? 

In July 2014, users of a dating app were shocked to find profiles of homeless dogs from a local shelter in their feed. The profiles came complete with beautifully taken photos and witty bios narrating the dogs’ stories and how they need loving homes. 

One animal rescue group had this to say: “Swipe right for puppy love!”

The name of this group?

Social Tees Animal Rescue!

Photo from Social Tees Animal Rescue

This New York-based non-profit organization places at-risk animals in loving homes. With a no-kill policy, Social Tees rescues, rehabilitates, and rehomes more than 3,000 dogs, cats, birds, and other animals each year. 

Aiming to spread awareness of homeless dogs through a new, creative twist, Social Tees partnered with BBH, an advertising company also based in New York.

The twist in the campaign? 

Using the dating app Tinder as the platform!

Photo from Slate

With the help of BBH interns, Social Tees creatively constructed profiles with attractive photos for 10 dogs on Tinder. 

Witty quips were also written for the dogs’ bios. With lines such as “Single and ready to mingle!” and “Roses are grey, Violets are grey, and everything is grey because I’m a dog,” Social Tees made sure to capture Tinder users’ attention and smiles!

So, how did the campaign work using Tinder?

Anyone using Tinder within a mile of Social Tees would see the dogs’ profiles. If a user swiped right, it doesn’t mean adoption right away. 

Instead, he or she would receive a message enumerating different calls to action: Volunteer at the local shelter, take a dog out for a walk, have a “short-term relationship” by fostering a dog, or even committing to full adoption. Thus, the users were shown that they can help the dogs in various ways.

All these made the dog adoption campaign playful, eye-catching, and endearing!

As a result, the project received more than 1,500 human and dog matches within 24 hours of the campaign’s launch. The project also garnered well over 55 million media impressions across 95 countries, including coverage from CNN and the Huffington Post.

The best part? 

All the dogs featured in the campaign were adopted by their “fur-ever” homes. 



Social Tees’ pet adoption campaign became a resounding success due to the following tactics:

  • Using a familiar platform gave the campaign a more straightforward path to the public. The adoption campaign didn’t need to explain itself to the target audience; it simply matched interested users and potential adopters to the homeless dogs.
  • Using an endearing, playful, and light tone made the campaign resonate with its target audience—young adults seeking companionship. Like with dating, the campaign also encouraged interested users to help dogs in different ways depending on a level of commitment the users were comfortable with. This positive reception was only made possible through the marketers knowing their target audience well.

Remember: Marketing campaigns don’t have to be difficult or complex to be effective. By using a familiar platform and using the appropriate tone for your target audience, you’ll be able to create a campaign that effectively captures your audience’s hearts.

We hope you enjoyed reading today’s article! 

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”

Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”

Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.

Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.

Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.

This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.

It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).

Guerrilla Marketing can be inexpensive.

The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.

Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.

This is every business’ or brand’s dream!

Every Friday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.

Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.

Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.

Hope you find this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.

Stay tuned for next Friday’s “Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing!”


Kyle Yu
Head of Special Projects
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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