When Spotify announced their new artist apps, they seemingly opened up a whole new can of worms for artists and fans, but especially for digital marketers. With these new apps, artists and their teams have complete creative control over the experience they’d like to provide by giving the apps their own unique feel and function – all while utilizing the Spotify platform and community. Reggae and alternative rock musician Matisyahu is one artist that recently capitalized on Spotify’s artist app opportunity and created a unique fan experience that’s worth taking a look at.
The Matisyahu Spark Seeker app is very straightforward. Users are brought to a screen that has a scrollable and darkened map of Israel in the background, where they are then asked to hold down a click of their mouse to attract and charge a circle of sparks. Once the mouse click is let go, the sparks disperse to a single point on the map like a magnet, leading users to unlock hidden content including streams of the album, exclusive audio commentary about the making of the album from Matisyahu himself and executive producer Kool Kojak, a breakdown of the instruments used, and more.
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“We initially developed the idea to release exclusive behind-the-scenes videos from the recording process of Spark Seeker,” said Brian Schopfel, co-founder of Eyes and Ears Entertainment. “We knew that it was a big album for him, both professionally and personally, and he had traveled to Israel to record the whole thing. We wanted to help represent his trip and show the importance of it so we developed the app on top of a map of Israel to give it some frame of reference and tie the whole navigation element together.”
Matisyahu, an avid Spotify user holding a Premium account himself, also chimed in to us about his app:
"I wanted to take the completed record one step further and allow the fans to listen to how the arrangements were constructed, what instruments were used, and really take my fans along the journey that went into making this new record,” the musician said. “We partnered with Spotify to create an environment where Kojak and I could tell the story in an engaging and interactive way. I'm thrilled with the way in turned out."
The team believes that fans would spend more time and attention with the content if they required them to take action.
“A successful digital campaign or idea should be a direct extension of, in this case, the album concept,” adds Austin Mayer, the other co-founder of Eyes and Ears. “Allowing fans to seamlessly interact and become part of the story of Spark Seeker is why this app works."
"The addition of technology to music shouldn't be seen as anything except a vessel to allow users to interact in ways they couldn't beforehand," Schopfel continues. "The typical user should never be wondering ‘How did they do that?’ but simply enjoy the experience and content.”