Making Growth Happn with Facebook

Happn started with a big idea: bring the real world back into online dating. Stripping away the algorithms, it simply lets users connect with people they’ve crossed paths with before. Launched in Paris in 2014, the company grew at a dizzying pace, amassing a quarter of a million users within months of its launch. The app now has over 10 million users across 30 cities.

Available on: iOS, Android, Windows

Goals: Growing with Trust

With its heart set on growth on a global scale, any city with more than a million people is a potential target for Happn. In addition to this, the team wanted the app to become more relevant in existing markets.

However, Happn’s commitment to bring the spark back to online dating came with a notable challenge: trust. With crossings based on proximity and geolocation, users needed to feel safe in their app experience. To build trust, Happn needed to find a way to ensure that profiles were genuine and that the app remained a safe space, so it turned to Facebook.

Solution: Real Love, Real Identities

Happn opted to make Facebook Login the only way for consumers to connect and use the app. With 100% of its users logging in with Facebook, the integration helped build a strong base of authentic profiles. Providing all the information through the Facebook profile - picture, first name, age - it reassured its users and ensured that any fake profiles were easy to spot. By only requesting essential data from users, Facebook Login provided Happn with a double-win in the form of a quick sign-up process with pre-filled rich profiles in the app, dramatically boosting conversion rates to almost 90%.

Scaling with Targeted Ads

By its very nature, Happn’s service needs to rapidly attract people in the same area. Thanks to Facebook’s powerful Mobile App Install Ads targeting, the Happn team was able to do exactly that. For example, targeting people based in Shoreditch during its London launch created a core community of early adopters, which helped to build a foundation to scale acquisition across the rest of the city.

“Facebook has been and continues to be our biggest source of acquisition. We almost exclusively use Facebook ads when launching in new markets and have seen installs grow by 70% in many markets.” — Didier Rappaport, CEO, Happn

Mobile App Install Ads continue to be integral to Happn, accounting for almost 60% of its user acquisition when launching in a new city. This channel also brought in higher quality users, with a much higher retention rate compared to those acquired from other channels on iOS.

Today, Happn has more than 4.5 million monthly active users and has formidable plans to grow quickly in multiple countries leveraging the power of Facebook.


  • 10M
    users across 30 cities
  • 4.5M
    Monthly Active Users
  • 90%
    Facebook login conversion rate
  • 60%
    of users acquired through Mobile App Installs Ads when launching in new cities

Facebook Products Used: