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Spotify Wrapped: A Viral Brand Campaign Case Study

How the “spotify wrapped campaign” helped the brand go viral

Music shapes emotions, amplifies joy, soothes pain, and paints life’s moments with vibrant hues. It unites, inspires, and speaks when words fall short, fueling memories that last a lifetime.

Music connects us in ways we can only imagine. To give the listeners a seamless experience, the creators of Spotify created the app. Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon founded and developed Spotify to tackle the industry’s growing piracy problem. 

Since the launch of the music streaming platform, Spotify has made every possible marketing effort to woo its audience. 

The platform’s success lies in its seamless interface, diverse music catalog, and innovative features like playlists, discovery tools, and the much-anticipated annual “Spotify Wrapped” feature. In this case study we are going to discuss how the introduction of “Wrapped” made the brand go viral on social media. 

About Spotify

Spotify is one of the leading music streaming platforms across the globe. Founded in 2008, Spotify now has more than 574 million users including 226 million subscribers. Spotify has made a place in the lives of music lovers from all over the world. 

Their quirky ads and smart use of consumer psychology have added to their massive fame in earned in recent years. When you join and start using Spotify, it learns your music preferences. The more you use it, listening to music and podcasts, the better it understands you.

Using this data, Spotify recommends songs and crafts playlists just for you. People cherish this personal touch, finding new favorite tunes based on Spotify’s intelligence.

Working and Recent Trends

Smooth Experimentation

When a music-focused business comes into play, imagine the huge number of people it tries to reach. Spotify, in dealing with this vast audience, maintains a remarkably polished approach to its marketing strategies.

The key lies in Spotify’s adaptability; they understand the rapid boredom of today’s generation, thus constantly experimenting and providing new ways to connect over music.

This agility in their marketing endeavors attracts consumers, turning them into paying members or what they usually call “the premium members”. Leveraging consumer psychology elegantly aids in retaining customers. 

With segments such as “Made For You”, “Your Time Capsule”, “Recommended Stations”, “Discover” and the most anticipated “Wrapped”, Spotify has been successful in retaining its audience and even increasing its number of listeners. 

Recent Growth Trends with Consumer Behaviour

At Spotify, artificial intelligence and machine learning play a significant role. They understand your music listening patterns, using every input to recommend the next song.

These inputs are crucial at Spotify HQ. The motto here is ‘Listening is everything.’ 

As you enjoy their song selections, Spotify tracks your listening habits, creating a pattern to predict your mood and preferred music genre ahead.

Now on to the main aspect of this case study. The execution and impact of their annual and highly anticipated segment “Wrapped”.

Annual spotify users

Spotify Wrapped


Spotify orchestrates the viral marketing campaign known as Spotify Wrapped. Launched yearly since 2016, this December event empowers users to explore and share their platform activity from the past year on social media.

This personalized roundup showcases users’ top five artists, most played songs, and preferred music genres. Content creators also receive their version, featuring the streaming statistics of their content. 

Alongside individualized data, Spotify Wrapped offers insights into broader platform activity. Notably, the data spans from January 1st to an undisclosed date in the last two months of the year.

Every year, Spotify Wrapped floods social media, turning millions into brand ambassadors for Spotify. Usually dropping in early December or late November, it arrives with billboards and TV ads, often lifting Spotify’s app store rank. 

This campaign’s ability to generate free advertising for Spotify has sparked both praise and critique, sparking debates on data ethics.

Beyond its impact on the music industry, pundits compare it to rival streaming services’ offerings, igniting industry discussions.

Objectives of the Campaign

  • Spotify Wrapped: Originally a marketing initiative to boost Spotify’s visibility.
  • Encourages Social Sharing: Users share their Spotify activity, enhancing the campaign’s reach.
  • Sets Spotify Apart: Distinguishes itself from competitors like Apple Music.
  • FOMO Effect: Coined by Spotify’s marketing head, it describes how Wrapped lures users to Spotify over other music apps.

Strategies of the “Spotify Wrapped” Campaign

Spotify Wrapped unpacks insights into your music preferences, top artists, genres, and interesting stats. Here’s an overview of Spotify Wrapped’s key features:

  • Listening Personality: Your habits shape a “Listening Personality” based on genre variety, listening duration, and preferred time for music.
  • Artist Insights: Discover your top 5 artists, their songs, and when you listen most. Stats include total listening time per artist.
  • Top Songs & Genres: Unveil your top five songs and genres with stats on minutes spent and top artists within each genre.
  • Artist Messages: Enjoy personalized messages from top artists in Wrapped, such as Arijit Singh and Drake. Use Blend to compare music with friends and delve into AI DJ insights.
Spotify wrapped glimpse

Results: Spotify Wrapped 2021

  • Wrapped drove an increase in Spotify’s Daily Active Users from 145.40 million to 146.16 million in 2020.
  • 461% increase in the volume of tweets about Spotify “Wrapped” from the year 2020 to 2021.
  • 131% boost in user engagement with Spotify Wrapped tweets in 2021.
  • 4,25,000,000 tweets relating to Spotify Wrapped in the first three days of the launch in 2022.
  • 17% increase in total engagements from 2021 to 2022.
  • 22% increase in unique authors post the 2022 “Wrapped”.

Note: Stats Source – Sprout Social

Things to Learn From “Spotify Wrapped” Campaign

1. Connects by Building Human Touch

Spotify Wrapped’s success lies in its ability to transform user data into a personalized narrative, creating a profound impact on both the audience and Spotify’s marketing strategies.

Everyone adores personality tests, and Spotify knows it well. Their latest addition, the Listening Personality feature, taps into this fascination.

Psychotherapist Dr. Dana Dorfman, PhD, notes that personality tests offer a unique perspective into our self-awareness and foster a feeling of belonging.

Drawing from the renowned Myers-Briggs model, Wrapped introduces personas identified by a four-letter acronym.

This isn’t Spotify’s initial venture into cultural trends. Previously, with its Music for Every Mood campaign, Spotify cleverly delved into meme culture, prompting introspection among its users.

Music for every mood

2. On-Point Execution

Brands frequently conceive exceptional ideas, but their execution often falls short.

Wrapped isn’t just interactive and intensely personalized; it’s incredibly shareable. Users can effortlessly share it across various platforms like Meta, Twitter, Snapchat, WhatsApp, email, and text directly from the app.

A dedicated landing page is crucial for a successful campaign, a facet often underestimated. Wrapped exceeds this, offering a comprehensive microsite brimming with content.

It features top tracks, editor’s picks, and best-of compilations, catering to both curious users and journalists. 

Brands that assist time-strapped media professionals in crafting compelling stories tend to gain more coverage.

3. User-generated content Improves Engagement

Brands such as Spotify really get how important it is when their users create content.

When your audience joins in and helps tell your story, your marketing feels more real, human, and trustworthy.

Surprisingly, 96% of people don’t believe ads. But interestingly, 92% of people trust what others share. This shows how powerful user-created content can be in your marketing strategy.

Spotify Wrapped is made for sharing, and that’s exactly what millions of users worldwide are doing. They proudly share their Wrapped reports and personalities on social media, almost like a symbol of pride.

When brands’ campaigns become a part of jokes or references in pop culture, that’s a big win.

Wrapped is making its mark in pop culture too, appearing in memes all over the place.

4. Customer-Centric Campaign

Each year, Wrapped celebrates memorable moments (even the quirky ones) users had with Spotify. It’s a strong marketing move, thanking loyal users and highlighting their shared journey.

Wrapped reaches across digital, social, and out-of-home (OOH) channels. It’s a smooth, global campaign that’s well put together.

In 2023, the focus is on self-expression and playfulness. These themes shine through in how things look, what’s said, and how it’s all put together.


Spotify’s foremost principle centers on personalized experiences, and understanding how it fosters customer loyalty. The “Wrapped” feature echoes this belief. By tailoring experiences for every Spotify user, they anticipate driving substantial sales and revenue growth.

This achievement owes much to cutting-edge tech like machine learning and adept user data management. This viral marketing gem has resonated deeply with music enthusiasts.

Moreover, it serves as a pivotal incentive for selling Spotify subscription plans. The saying “Data is 21st century’s gold” rings true, particularly for companies offering personalized services. Spotify stands as a prime example, handling data in a remarkably promising and considerate manner.

In today’s digital era, marketing relies heavily on digital strategies, and marketers are becoming increasingly tech-savvy. Are you curious about what digital marketing can offer for your business or career growth? Take a look at our highly insightful Certified Digital Marketing Master Program.

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