A match made on Match [Stephen Zeigler/DigitalVision via Getty Images]
The S&P 500 and Nasdaq notched small gains today after last week’s initial jobless claims hit a 50-year low and Treasury yields — which jumped after President Biden said he’d renominate Jerome Powell as Fed chair — began to cool. The Dow closed down slightly.
BTW: The stock market is closed tomorrow for Thanksgiving. We'll be back in your inbox on Monday with digestible news (after we’ve all digested our T-giving meals). We’re grateful you Snack with us each day.
“Voice Prompts” on Hinge… slightly cringe. Dating giant Match Group owns Tinder, Hinge, OKCupid, and 20+ other e-romance businesses. Algorithms rule the world, from suggesting your Spotify tunes to hooking you on TikTok. Match has long used algorithms to surface eligible singles who also love Nirvana and vegan sushi. Now its techy selection process is getting a human edge:
#CuffingSeason… During the pandemic, couch-bound singles flocked to dating apps for (virtual) company. Bumble video-chat usage soared 93% after a national emergency was declared, and Match added features to its apps — think free video calls, virtual trivia nights, and Insta-like social feeds. But the real money is in paid subscriptions like Tinder Gold and perks like unlimited swipes. Case in point: Tinder is the #1 grossing lifestyle app worldwide, with a record 10.4M “payers” last quarter. Human matchmaking could be apps’ next premium perk.
There are too many fish in the sea… Algorithms have enabled personalized experiences on a broad scale. For a low cost (or for free) tailored music, entertainment, and even people can be surfaced to us via apps. Now the differentiators are curation and quality. Human curation is more expensive, but it increases the IRL connection that many crave in an algo-driven world. That could become a competitive advantage for apps like Match.
What Zooms in must Zoom out… The Zoom boom may be over. On Monday, the company reported slightly better than expected earnings — but revenue growth slowed for the third consecutive quarter. Zoom’s quarterly sales grew just 35% from last year, compared to 10X faster growth a year ago. Shares slid 15% yesterday, dropping Zoom’s market cap to a third of its pandemic peak. Now Zoom’s focused on two things:
Zoomed in too far… Zoom’s growth didn’t just slow from pandemic highs: It had its slowest quarter since 2018. Other pandemic thrivers also experienced the “DPF effect” — demand pulled forward. Demand boomed all at once early in the pandemic (aka was “pulled forward”), then slowed as new customers dwindled. The stock market’s up 26% this year, but some WFH winners are seeing slowdown-driven selloffs:
Some pandemic habits could stick… But Zoom could still lose to the conference room. People who flocked to Zoom, Peloton, and Chegg are returning to offices, gyms, and schools — and growth is slowing. But not everyone is experiencing subscripturation: DocuSign’s subscription revenue grew faster last quarter than a year earlier, because people who started signing digitally aren’t returning to physical paperwork.
Authors of this Snacks own shares of: Match Group, CVS, Apple, General Motors, Netflix, Tesla, Walmart, Spotify