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Weekly Recap

Weekly Recap: November 25 – December 1

December 1, 2017

With the world of advertising and marketing moving so quickly, it can be hard to keep up with trends, ads, and more. Not to worry, we have you covered. This week, we recapped some of our favourite ads that happened throughout the week. Enjoy!

Written by Dakarai

Uber and MADD get together for emotional campaign

D: I think in today’s age it’s a reality that we’ve grown a bit desensitized to drunk driving commercials. We’ve all seen the messaging. They are intended to shock the audience into never even thinking of taking the wheels while under the influence. However, drunk driving is still a huge problem. MADD has launched “Motherhood”, a 60 second video that is actually aimed at those Canadians that are desensitized. The question is, what will it take for people to stop drinking and driving? Are these campaigns reaching them? Is the target their friends? There are a lot of questions to be asked but “Motherhood” is taking a step in the right direction with their PSA.

Spotify taps into their consumer data for a brilliant campaign

D: You might have remembered Spotify’s campaign last year, “Thank’s 2016” written by yours truly. Well this year they’re using the same approach in leveraging all of that hilarious consumer data and turning it into funny billboards. They’ve tapped into the amount of times embarrassing song has been streamed, or a weird playlist and more and have turned them into funny copy lines, such as “2018 Goals. Take a page from the 3,445 people who streamed the “Boozy Brunch” playlist on a Wednesday this year.”. It’s a fun play from the brand that also shows just how many active users they have. I mean all I know is if they referenced my playlist or a song I’m guilty of streaming a million times, they’ve just turned me into a lifetime member. Where do I sign up? See below for a few of my favourites.

 

That’s our weekly recap to keep you up to date on the best ads, trends, and more that we could find over the week. You can check out our last weekly recap here. Think we missed something important? Let us know! Also, be sure to follow us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

Guest

So We’re Spying on You…. But is it Really All THAT Creepy? – Spotify’s ‘Thanks 2016, It’s Been Weird’ Campaign

October 6, 2017

Guest Article By: Michael Swanton

 

By now just about everyone under 90 is aware that the platforms and social media that they use are tracking as well as recording their data and selling it to devious marketers. That’s why that ad for a Cuban vacation won’t stop following you.

But is it really as creepy as it seems? One of my all time favourite campaigns was Spotify’s “Thanks 2016.. It’s been weird”. It totally breaks the stigma and provides a clear example of what marketing ought to be. The concept is simple yet genius, Spotify’s CMO Seth Farbman put it best when he commented on it saying “Utilizing data from listeners led to the idea of reflecting the culture via listener behaviour”.

So Spotify went global putting up massive billboards and trolling local audiences about their listening behaviour, some classics include: “Dear person who played “sorry” 42 times on Valentine’s day, What did you do?” Or better yet; “Dear person who made a playlist called “one night stand with Jeb Bush like he’s a bond girl in a European casino… We have so many questions.”

Spotify also managed to make witty yet insightful comments on popular culture during some of the of the most tumultuous and polarizing times this generation have seen. Comments like “Dear 3,749 people who streamed “It’s the end of the world as we know it” after the brexit vote, Hang in there.”

It’s almost as if the brand is engaging in a literal one on one conversation with you, and they’re pretty damn funny. They took the spirit of the moment and literally said what everyone was thinking… on a 42 foot billboard. This unique style gives the impression that Spotify knows us but stays within the bounds we are comfortable with, never mentioning any names, only commenting on funny and universally relevant insights. The way marketers typically use big data to follow you around the internet with pop up ads, or attempt to sneak in your social media feed has become transparent and tacky. But Spotify’s up front and in your face comments make way better use of this information, by relating to its users in an individual fashion and commenting on their quirks. It isn’t so creepy if they’re just trying to get to get to know you and crack a few jokes.

Spotify nailed this one, the fact that they “showed their hand” while playfully teasing their audience about their most private moments took serious marketing tact and poise. The copy was written in a tone that reminds you of funny twitter memes, or the way that a close friend might bust your chops. And this is what makes the campaign so genius, and a perfect example of proper marketing. Using listener data to mirror the culture to itself and communicating with the audience the way they communicate with themselves literally makes Spotify seem like they’re “part of the squad”, it makes the stigma around big data seem overblown and clarifies that that’s just how they know us. Not only that but it’s also how they can relate to us.

The campaign humanized Spotify as a brand, and got us to laugh at ourselves. It’s a risk to tease your audience, admit you know them a little too well or make political comments but that’s exactly what you would expect from a friend who knows you. And that’s why this is an exemplary example of marketing, they proved they know us implied that they accept us and made us feel as if they were one of us. What if the brands you use continue to try to become your “friend”, would you mind if Nike starts trolling on your Instagram photos if you rock Adidas?

 

Michael is a University of Toronto Digital Enterprise Management student, Freelance E-commerce solutions specialist, web designer and digital marketer. When he isn’t plotting on his next business moves or trying to sell you something, he’s at the gym at ungodly hours or making great memories with great friends. Check him out on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Snapchat @mswanton1

Dakarai Turner

4:44 by Jay Z – Does Tidal’s Exclusive Content Work?

July 11, 2017

Maybe you’ve heard of a relatively unknown artist named Jay Z dropping his 13th studio album ‘4:44’ a couple of weeks ago. If you have, chances are a good portion of you weren’t able to listen to it. And why’s that? Because ‘4:44’ was made as a Tidal exclusive, meaning it was only available to their subscribers. So for the majority of us that don’t stream music, or use other platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, or Google Play, we had to wait a full week later until it was available to the rest of the public (except Jay Z doesn’t like Spotify so they’ll never get it). Picture it like watching a wild party happening every day knowing you won’t be able to join it for a full week. The question is: is that desire enough for you to pay for entry? Do you need to listen to something so bad immediately that you’re willing to pay for a monthly Tidal membership, or can you simply wait the full week?

That would be easy to answer if the album wasn’t trending on Twitter with a plethora of different lyrics being tweeted out and solved as if they were written in code. This right here creates FOMO. Tidal hopes that creating FOMO is enough to bring you over to their side.

SO does this work? It’s too early to tell as 4:44 was just recently released, but we can take it back to last year when Kanye West released ‘The Life of Pablo’, a Tidal exclusive. It was reported that Tidal subscribers jumped from 1 Million to 2.5 Million after its release. Keep in mind that this was during a time when a 3 month free trial was being made available, but it would still be a major success if they could retain half of those new members.

Tidal has positioned themselves as that too cool for school club that attracts new users through exclusive content. This is through concerts, video, new music, playlists, etc. With that being said, they still only have 3 million users while Apple Music and Spotify carry over 20 million users respectively. So why isn’t this working for them? This exclusive strategy works just about everywhere else from clothing, tech, automotive, and more.

The issue starts from the product and the way its presented. Tidal has rubbed people the wrong way from the start with their botched product launch. Back in 2015 the service was presented as the second coming of christ. A group of top tier and very wealthy musicians where speaking about how the other streaming services do not pay the artists enough and that Tidal is the solution with their pricing model that was twice that of their competitors.

This right here is a brand and audience disconnect.

I truly believe that this is where Tidal went wrong. At first you could say that Spotify had too large of a grasp on the music streaming market. However, Apple Music launched after Tidal and they have done exceptionally well, so there goes that argument. Exclusive content drives sales when people like the brand and the product. Apple Music offers tons of exclusive albums such as Drake’s ‘More Life’ which broke a streaming record with 300 million worldwide streams in its first week. The service also carries exclusive radio shows with Beats 1.

Will 4:44 bump up Tidal’s subscribers? Sure, but as a service they need to come up with a way to increase subscribers aside from waiting on one of their big name artists to release an exclusive album. If not, they’ll be chasing the likes of Apple, Spotify, and Google forever. What do you guys think? Are you motivated to sign up for a service just to be one of the first ones to use on of their products?

 

Dakarai is an ambitious professional with a passion for advertising and marketing, and is currently employed as an account coordinator for an ad agency in Toronto. When he’s not at the office, he’s most likely trying out a new restaurant, browsing AdWeek, or binge watching something on Netflix. Dakarai, but you can call him Dak. Follow him on TwitterInstagram, and connect with him on LinkedIn.

Weekly Recap

Weekly Recap (April 29 – May 5)

May 5, 2017

Written By: Malick, Dakarai, and Kathleen

As advertisers gear up for summer, you can expect a lot of action in the coming months. Not to worry, as usual The MAD Mix has you covered for the hottest trends, ads, and more. Check out the latest in the advertising and marketing world in our weekly recap below:

 

Nike-Breaking2 

M: If you follow this platform regularly, you’ll know that Nike is a favourite of ours. From quality production to delivering a solid product, they seem to do no wrong in their advertising. In their latest endeavour, Nike has spent time creating one of the most innovative running shoes they’ve created to date. The purpose? Tomorrow, Nike and people form all around the world will attempt to break the two-hour marathon running record. The shoe that they’ve designed has so much technology invested in it that they want to encourage people to do that feat using their new shoe titled “The Nike Zoom Vaporfly 4%”. This marathon is all apart of Nike’s constant desire to push the limits of human athleticism time and time again, and if there’s any shoe to do it, it’s this one. Check out the spot they’ve created for it below. Anyone else want to give it a go?

 

Spotify Awkward Family Moments

K: We all have a song that is attached to a moment or event that happened in our life. Whenever you hear the song it reminds you of that specific time that you will probably never forget. It can either make you happy or sad whenever you hear it. Spotify needed a way to promote their family plan, so what better way than to tie it with your emotions? Spotify decided to play on that but relate it to family moments, more specifically awkward family moments. Some people might find them too sexual but I think it is funny especially the second one. Check out the two videos below.

 
The Sunny Co Bikini Giveaway

D: If you live in the U.S, chances are your Instagram feed was absolutely covered with the same picture of a model in a red bikini. For those of you that are completely lost right now, a swimsuit company by the name of Sunny Co decided to announce a 24-hour giveaway on Instagram a couple of days ago. The now deleted post asked consumers to repost the picture of a model wearing the bikini and tag the brand in order to receive the usual $65 swimsuit for the price of only shipping and handling.

If you can’t already predict what happens next, tens of thousands of people reposted the image, and this ultimately revealed the lack of preparation behind the whole promotion. Following this, Sunny Co decided it would be a great idea to update the conditions of the deal on their website and included a note that stated the company “[reserved] the right to cap the promotion if they deem necessary.”. As you can imagine, they got torn a part on social media and hopefully this serves as a lesson for brands. The whole thing comes off as very “fyre fest-ish”. In the sense of complete unprepared bait and switch tactics or plain negligence. From unknown to hated in 24 hours. But hey, at least people know their name now right? Check out some of the best meme’s below.

 

That’s our weekly recap to keep you up to date on the best ads, trends, and more that we could find over the week. You can check out our last weekly recap here where we gave our thoughts on the latest Pepsi ad. Think we missed something important? Let us know! Also, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

Guest

Battle of the Streaming Services: Apple Music vs Spotify

November 4, 2016

Guest Article By: Laura Hong

 

The rapid growth of streaming services has dramatically changed the way consumers, consume music.  In the last decade, streaming services have grown exponentially to the point where multiple streaming services not only exist-but flourish. The two most recognizable in 2016? Apple and Spotify.

With its 8th year in market, Swedish based Spotify, boasts 30MM active subscribers.  In comparison, Apple Music’s debut in 2015 has garnered 13MM subscribers since its emergence into the music streaming industry. This presented the question to me: How do they differ? On the surface, Apple Music and Spotify provide similar services.

apple-and-spotify

 

Both apps are relatively easy to use, priced similarly at $9.99 per month and widely available on mobile and desktop devices. In short, both play music on demand from a large catalog of songs and make recommendations based on listening your history. Both services offer the ability to create and share playlists of any kind and able to play music even when there’s no service or Wi-Fi around. Quick disclaimer: I do admit, I am a huge Apple fan and love their line of products, from the iPhone, to the iPad, MacBook, and Apple TV!

As a big Apple user, personally I was really surprised with Apple Music’s UI functionality.  It’s very easy to get “lost” in the service, the UI is not a “natural” digital experience. Just recently, I’ve cancelled my apple music subscriptions and flipped over to the Spotify.

Here’s the main reason why;

Navigation

In typical Apple form, visually the Apple music app looks beautiful-but the same can’t be said about its navigation.  For a company that is all about a minimalist layout, I found it pretty surprising as to how confusing it was. It was not intuitive and hard to navigate.

Non-user friendly interface

What really bothers me the most about Apple Music is that everything seems more complex. Each task requires going to another section of the app to do so- it just takes more effort from me to get to play what I want to listen to. I find that in order for Apple Music to be more successful, they needed to simplify and streamline the app much more. This made me realize all the content in the world matters little if you don’t enjoy actually using the application.

Spotify on the other hand, has a strong all around showing and simple yet engaging user interface. It provides effective content, great aesthetic, and most importantly it’s simple to use. You can’t really go wrong with Spotify, especially if all you want is a solid no- fuss music streaming experience without a lot of complications and menus tacked on. I really felt like Spotify struck that perfect balance between streamlined user interface (UI) and fun without compromising user experience.

The fact is, the way we consume music is changing more than ever. Music streaming services are here to stay, and this is just the beginning.

 

laura-hong

 

Laura Hong is currently enrolled in the Advertising and Marketing Communications program at Humber College. Besides her interest in the tech world, Laura is a huge dog lover, health nut and loves scuba diving.

Weekly Recap

Weekly Recap (June 18 – June 24)

June 24, 2016

Want to stay up-to-date with the new trends, products, campaigns, announcements and more throughout this past week? Say no more, we got you covered with our first ever weekly recap.

Written by Malick, and Dakarai.

Bentley uses NASA technology to take a 53-billion-pixel image

D: The luxury car brand took a seemingly normal photo of the Golden Gate Bridge for their site, encouraging users to zoom in. Once you zoom, you go from the once panoramic image of the bridge, all the way to the imprint of the Bentley logo on the seat of the new Bentley Mulsanne. Bentley used this image to show their “attention to detail”. The image uses 53 billion pixels which is 53,000 megapixels (the iPhone 6 takes 12 megapixel images). If printed out, a picture this big would be the same size as a football field, for comparison.

Panoramic image of the Golden State Bridge

Panoramic image of the Golden State Bridge

 

After zooming at 50%, you being to see the Bentley Mulsanne

After zooming at 50%, you being to see the Bentley Mulsanne

 

At 100% Zoom you hit the stitching on the passenger seat

At 100% Zoom you hit the stitching on the passenger seat

Instagram Reaches 500 Million Monthly Users

M: Instagram has easily become my favourite social media platform since I got it last year-and clearly I’m not the only one who thinks so. It’s been confirmed that Instagram has gained over 100 million users in the last 9 months alone to bring the total above 500 million! To scale, it has gained about 200 million users in the last year and a half. This is amongst the various changes made to the platform this year, including a new logo, change in interface, and general algorithm. Keep the selfies and food pics coming!Bottle With Popping Cork on Apple

 

Screen Shot 2016-06-24 at 1.53.05 PM

 

Independence Day Uses Google Maps to Simulate an Alien Invasion

D: Now I’m not usually one to go too crazy over film promotion, but this really caught my eye. My friend shared a website with me that is an interactive tool to promote the new Independence Day 2 movie that releases in theatres today (June 24)! The website prompts you to enter your address in the given field, and after doing so it will show a simulation of an alien invasion in your neighbourhood. Personally, I didn’t even know there was an Independence Day 2 movie coming out, so this was a great way to put it on people’s radar in an exciting way. Check out the site here.

Screen Shot 2016-06-24 at 1.32.27 PM

Screengrab of the Home Page

Screen Shot 2016-06-24 at 4.41.42 PM

Screengrab using the White House

2016 NBA Finals is the Most Watched Finals of the Century

GTY_Curry_James_jrl_160602_4x3_992

M: Back with the 2016 NBA finals. I can say that it was one of the best finals I’ve ever seen, but that has been solidified through the fact that according to Ad Week, it was one of the most watched games in NBA finals history SINCE the Michael Jordan era, surpassing the 30 million viewer mark. That’s huge. In this epic match up, it’s only appropriate that the man who was a part of this viewership spike, is also the same man who made a promise to bring the championship back to Cleveland: LeBron James. Just another comparison between him and MJ I guess…

Rhapsody Rebrands Itself as Napster

D: Rhapsody and Napster, two names you probably haven’t heard since grade school are making a comeback..sort of. In this world music streaming giants such as Spotify, Apple Music, and TIDAL, it looks as though Rhapsody wants a piece of the pie. The company recently announced that it will now take on the name of Napster, since they acquired Napster itself in 2011. The change of the name is clearly to appeal to those that once loved the platform..#Throwback. The question is, is it too late to be doing this? Check out a teaser of the change below.
Nap_Spin

 

Nike Salute’s the Cavaliers in “Worth the Wait”

M: This is the ad that I was waiting for. There’s no doubt that the NBA Finals was absolutely unreal, as mentioned earlier with the Finals hitting over 30 million viewers for the first time since the 90’s. In light of the celebration, Nike released a 60-second spot online that aired directly after the grand finale. The ad, “Worth the Wait” shows the deep emotion for new and longtime Cavs fans that finally get to witness their city winning the big championship. The ad features everything from a security guard watching the game while at work, a girl watching while riding the bus, and families watching together. Nike captures the nerves that the game brought to fans around the world (especially in Ohio) as it came right down to the final seconds. The Cleveland Cavaliers finally did it. Check it out below.

 

These are some of the key moments we wanted to share with you so far from this week. Anything we missed? Let us know! Check out our recap of last week’s best, and be sure to like us on Facebook here.