The Sound of Whitewall

May 23, 2017
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How do you feel about S Club 7? Radiohead – yes or no? Do you like Radio 6? Polarising questions! While music can create a sense of shared community and collaboration, it can also be the subject of a good ribbing in our office.

So how does this all apply to marketing? Earlier this year, we attended the Techaus festival at SWG3 and heard from David Hill about engagement through effective advertising at Spotify.

As Hill detailed, with streaming services left, right and centre, it’s no longer a question of ownership but rather one of access. And it’s not something that’s singular to media either. Brands such as Rent the Runway, Air BnB and Uber provide services that are appealing to the younger generation.

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With all of the insights from British Land’s True Value of Stores and Westfield’s How we shop now, the market for providing access has expanded. Engaging with key audiences, especially the 18-35 range, is essential as is understanding that it’s not necessarily a question of selling a product to the younger consumer anymore. The bigger draw is to provide access at a reasonable cost making the brand more inclusive and appealing.

And then there’s engagement. Providing access is only half the battle. How do you convert users into loyal brand advocates? As marketers, it’s a question we’re constantly asking.

The answer, more often than not, is data. But how do you use this data to create meaningful ways to engage with consumers? Enter Spotify!

At the end of 2016 Spotify subtly introduced billboards highlighting key listening trends in specific geographical areas. In addition to key trends such as listening spikes around key news topics, it harnessed the power of its user data in a fun and slightly cheeky way that was insightful without being overly creepy.

Here are a few examples from Spotify’s ”Thanks 2016, it’s been weird” campaign…

“Dear person who played ‘Sorry’ 42 times on Valentine’s Day, what did you do?”

“Dear 3,749 people who streamed “It’s the end of the world as we know it” the day of the Brexit Vote. Hang in there.”

As the campaign rolls out its next iteration, it’s about taking the soundtracks of day to day users and pulling quirky moments to encourage others to soundtrack their lives:

“Someone made a playlist called “sorry I lost your cat” when they could have been making flyers.”

“DO NOT DELETE THIS AGAIN POOTY OR I WILL END YOU” is a playlist. Be careful, Pooty. They seem serious.”

Both conclude with the subheading “Discover, follow and maybe even create your own playlists”.

A few times a week, we do just that. With themes ranging from celestial happenings and Harry Potter to the Queen’s Birthday and GBBO inspired playlists, we’re always making some kind of music in this office.

And with 17 contributors of varying ages and musical preferences, you’re guaranteed everything from Metallica to Little Mix. If there was to be a geo-specific Spotify campaign based around this office we think it would probably highlight the bi-weekly playing of Scissor Sisters “Let’s have a kiki”. It’s a Whitewall thing.

P.S. Fancy listening to our tunes? We’re loving Spotify’s new scannable images. Hit the search button at the bottom of your screen and open the camera. Scan one of our lovely codes above and you’ll be taken straight to the playlist. Magic!

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