fiction

Unwrapping the Magic: Spotify & Shareable Data

Joe Stanley, Research Manager at Mustard on how Spotify wrapped may have influenced the way we present data…

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. No, not Christmas… Spotify Wrapped season! Not, “what did you get for Christmas this year?” but, “who were your top artists this year?”. More “what were your top 5 songs?” than “what are your top 5 Christmas dinner foods?”.

That time of year where we get to see (and judge!) what everyone’s been listening to most. I love it. And I love that it is something that others enjoy sharing across their channels to give all their friends, family and followers a little window into their life. According to social media analytics company SproutSocial, 400 million posts were made about Spotify Wrapped on X in the three days following its 2022 release. In 2021, 60 million users shared their Wrapped graphics to social media to gloat about how (probably) Taylor Swift was their most listened to artist.

It highlights the increasing desire for more emotional and personalised data that tells a story. This is who I am, and this is what I like. (Even if the story being told is – ”my child takes over my Spotify so Moana is top… again!”) The artists you enjoyed, the songs you connected with in 2023 – for many, it helps paint the picture of your year in a bite-sized and, importantly, shareable format.

Not unlike, then, what we in the research and insights world aim for with our own outputs. In an ideal world, all our clients would be excitedly awaiting our research so that they can shout about it, share it around their whole company and tell colleagues “this is who we are!”. Sadly, not always the case.

At Mustard, though, we understand that the term “death by PowerPoint” is one heard all too often within our industry, and we want to move away from that. We strive to Make a Difference by telling better stories and as a whole company have completed extensive “Storytelling” training. We incorporate narrative elements into all of our outputs, and are producing more snappy, relatable, and ultimately shareable outputs than ever before. Through more engaging formats, we are helping clients see ‘their story’ more clearly and communicate it across their business.

This is the future of engagement and Spotify Wrapped, in a way, should be seen as a trailblazer for data and insights. If they can make the general public excited for data, we as researchers can do the same for our clients by producing engaging, exciting and story-led content. We might not have made it onto your Instagram stories and WhatsApp groups just yet, but we’ll get there…

Written by Joe Stanley
Posted on 12th Dec, 2023