Smart Customer Data Meets Hyper-Localization: How Spotify Got it Right

You’ve probably noticed at least one ad of Spotify’s “Thanks 2016, it’s been weird” campaign, perhaps laughing at their genius use of customer data and personalization to deliver a fun, targeted message like a quippy best friend.

Launched at the end of 2016 in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and France - as well as in 10 other countries - each version of the ad was inspired by data from listeners in different geographical areas. Data which not only gave interesting (and sometimes hilarious) insights to the brand’s consumer behavior, but also lent an interesting commentary on how people reacted to some of the social, political and pop culture events that shaped the previous year.

In an interview with Spotify’s CMO, Seth Farbman, told Content Standard that the campaign “led to the concept of reflecting culture via listener behavior,” helping them realize the true power of data to “inspire and give an insight into the emotion that people are expressing [during their daily lives].”

While this is a traditional billboard campaign, there’s not denying that technology has made traditional approaches to localization a thing of the past. Sending personalized messages to individual users is simply the one way to go if you want to amp up a company’s brand equity, customer advocacy and bottom line.

Some key points of inspiration marketers can take away from this campaign are:

  • How to think out of the box to dig deeper on customer localization campaigns, turning personas into targetable audiences.
  • Why innovative doesn’t have to mean creating something completely new: Spotify’s use of outdoor media and smart data blend traditional vehicles with modern tech.
  • Ideas for how to use data to relate - not alienate – your consumers: With a wicked sense of humor, Spotify manages to avoid making its listeners feel that machines know too much about them.
  • Examples of other successful marketing campaigns that successfully translated data into marketing and were able to effectively reach consumers in an emotionally compelling way.

Personalization is no longer the future of content, but the status quo for brands that want to stand out. Data shows that 75% of consumers are more willing to buy from companies that are able to recognize them as individuals and companies that provide recommendations that fit their particular preferences. While savvy consumers can see promotional messaging from a mile away, they still want to build relationships with brands that care about and understand them. 

And if it takes caring about somebody’s obsession on Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” to show that, then so be it.

To continue the conversation about personalization, join your peers at the Marketing and Mentoring Summit this June 13-14. CMO mentors and Future CMO Club members will be coming together for mainstage talks and breakout sessions to discuss how brands can leverage data to create more personalized customer experiences.

Read the original Content Standard article, here.