The Briefing

We know what you heard last year!

How Spotify created one of the biggest FOMO moments.

December 9, 2021
Reading time 2 min.

🌈 A quick taster for you:  

  • Wrapped is your personal music ‘year in review’ from Spotify.
  • FOMO = Fear of missing out. 
  • Artists, fans, haters: there's something for everyone.

🧐 Why do I care?

Did you know that in Sweden it’s tradition to watch the Christmas episodes of Donald Duck at 3 pm on Christmas Eve? Yep, that's as much part of their Christmas as hanging baubles on the tree! And since 2016, there’s been another Swedish end-of-year tradition which we love: Spotify Wrapped.

If you use Spotify you've probably already watched or listened to your own Wrapped, and maybe even shared it with your friends. But let’s get into the real nitty gritty of what Wrapped is all about.

🔍 What exactly is happening here?

  • What is Wrapped?
    If you have Spotify then go ahead and skip this paragraph :) But for all Apple Music fans out there, here’s a quick summary: On December 1st, Spotify gives you a rundown of your year in music. You can see how many minutes of music you’ve listened to, and which songs, artists, podcasts, or genres you’ve pressed play on the most. You can also see whether you’re an ultra-fan of any artist — e.g. if you’re in the top 0.5% of people who’ve listened to them the most.
  • Influencer marketing at its best!
    This move from Spotify is ingenious and creates a win-win-win situation for everyone on the platform. For listeners, it’s great for them to see which artists have made their mark on the year. For artists, it gives them a good impression of how many fans have enjoyed their music. And for Spotify, they benefit from the massive buzz as Wrapped is shared and trending across social media — there are currently nine musicians in the top 20 Twitter accounts, and eight in the top 20 Instagram accounts!
  • FOMO is coming!
    The top 5 artists on Wrapped 2021 are Bad Bunny, Taylor Swift, BTS, Drake and Justin Bieber. If there's one thing we've learned, it's that if anything is trending then the memes won't be far behind — or, as Elon Musk would say, “Who controls the memes, controls the world.”
    Indeed, social media is bursting with memes about Wrapped — there’s a wild mix of enthusiasm for Spotify, the realization that one artist has been listened to more than average, and the bashing of other music services. And all those memes have one thing in common... which is making people who aren’t on Spotify get some serious FOMO! So to everyone out there who uses Apple Music: Stay strong! 
  • Men lie, women lie, dogs lie, but numbers don't.
    Since 2020, Spotify users can no longer see their annual review in the browser — it’s only shown on the app. This is a clever move from Spotify, because it’s led to a lot more people downloading their app. In fact, the number of Spotify app downloads increased by 21% during the first week of December 2020.

🤓 What does this mean for me?

Wrapped is a prime example of how well-planned marketing campaigns can engage customers without resorting to annoying advertising. This year’s Wrapped even includes quizzes where you can guess things like which podcast you’ve listened to the most. 

And so here’s to taking advantage of the small window of time before the new year begins, and Spotify’s tracking for the yearly review starts afresh. So you know what that means: it’s time to listen to all your guilty pleasure tracks! Because from the 1st of January they’ll know all about what you listened to!

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