Bumble may have shaken up the online dating landscape in empowering women to make the first move, but now, it's also going a step further: helping women to expand their professional networks through Bumble Bizz. Launched in Australia on March 20, the new mode aims to help users develop their careers, find a mentor, hire or be hired by fostering one-on-one connections via the same "women first" swipe function.
Much like the dating function, users will be filtered based on geographical proximity and can express interest in others by swiping right. Again, as with romantic prospects, connections will only be formed via mutual right-swipes. However unlike the dating function, Bumble Bizz profiles include a digital resume, a skills section and the opportunity to include a portfolio of work.
To celebrate the Australian launch, Bumble tapped a variety of successful entrepreneurial women to share their business insights, as well as their "one connection" — the person that empowered, changed, encouraged, and inspired these women in their professional careers. Below, Elle Ferguson, founder of the Elle Effect, dishes on what she's learnt as a female entrepreneur and tips for getting the most out of Bumble Bizz.
POPSUGAR Australia: Tell us a bit about your One Connection?
Elle Ferguson: For me, I identified Phil Staub, who owns General Pants. I spent just over six years working for them in their head office. And the time that I spent there was when my blog They All Hate Us was born. It was born during our lunch break, Tash [Sefton] and I pretty much built it during our lunch break and after work. I remember when Instagram took off, the blog kind of blew up and it became our full-time jobs, I'd left General Pants and met up with Phil afterwards. I said to him, you've had this successful career, what advice would you give me? He said, be you, and stay true to your brand. I literally have lived by those years, and 12 years later, I still do. Everything I do is true to me and true to my brand.
PS: What do you want people to take from Elle Effect?
EF: Aside from an amazing golden glow, the Elle Effect is something that comes from within. It's feeling good about yourself, feeling that you can do anything you can put your heart to. That's why I've also aligned with Bumble Bizz, because it''s about empowering women. This is the first time that women can have the power back and start the conversation. I think with Elle Effect as well, I'm a woman working for myself with my own company, it's not a big organisation, you need to be able to network with other women that are going through the same process and share your stories, because we all can learn when we share knowledge.
PS: Who are other entrepreneurial women you admire?
EF: My sister, who runs Baby Anything, is another woman who has made a successful, amazing business. We share our knowledge. Other than that, Jen Atkin, who founded Ouai. And I know a lot of people kind of roll their eyes at Kim Kardashian, but it's really amazing to see what she's done with her empire, her reinvention and platform. Chiara Ferragni and Glossier's Emily Weiss are also another amazing two that have turned their platform and status into global businesses.
PS: What would be your personal tips for women on Bumble Bizz?
EF: I'm super excited, because I'm actually looking for an assistant — somebody to bring on board — and I'm going to use the app to try and find this person. I feel like this is the right place, and what is so great about it is that I'm essentially going to be able to write everything that I want and connect with these people straight away. My advice to people using it is to be really honest and look at your skillset — it's essentially your resume, but the great thing about it is that it's so straightforward. It's short and sweet — so keep it that way.