work

Justin Bieber
Purpose

At the start of 2016, three of Justin Bieber’s singles were on constant radio rotation – but sales of his album had plateaued. So to convert airplay into sales, we created an innovative outdoor campaign that reacted in real time to radio airplay. Every time a Bieber single played on the radio, digital billboards across London automatically changed to show a poster promoting the new album. Sales jumped up 31% over the campaign period and the album returned to number 1.

Understanding

We needed to convert Bieber hype into sales and streams.

Justin Bieber’s new album Purpose was released in late 2015, and the first three singles dominated the chart over Christmas. However by early March, all three singles had fallen down the chart, and the album had dropped out of the top five. With all three singles still receiving heavy airplay, and with Bieber making a visit to the UK, Universal charged us with re-promoting the album.

We needed a media strategy that would convert the hype & airplay into sales & streams.

Solution

Every time Capital FM played a Bieber song, digital billboards promoted the album.

We constantly track the playlists of the radio stations that play Universal’s music, and hence spotted an opportunity. Capital FM, London’s biggest pop station, had three songs from the album on heavy rotation, most unusual for one artist and album. Tracks from Bieber’s Purpose were being broadcast to London’s commuters and drivers at high frequency.

We created an innovative outdoor campaign that reacted in real time to the Capital playlist. Whenever tracks from Purpose played on the radio, digital billboards across London told listeners which song was playing and the album the song comes from, prompting them to buy the track or stream the whole album on their phone.

Execution

We connected Capital’s live feed with a network of screens around London.

We created a dynamic data link, connecting Capital’s live playlist feed with Outdoor+’s digital screens around London, using the audio as a signal to trigger display of Bieber creative. Each time a Capital DJ cued up a track from Purpose, the Outdoor+ screens switched from whatever copy they had been showing to creative promoting the album. This creative dynamically referenced which Bieber song was playing on the radio at that moment with the line “now playing on Capital FM”.

Our creative ran for the duration of the song, whenever Capital played one of the singles from the album. We then partnered with Proxama to use their beacons on 65 London buses so that each time a bus passed by a site displaying the Bieber creative, people on the bus received a Chrome push notification saying “Listen to Justin’s album on Spotify now”. Finally we used RadiumOne to retarget everyone who interacted with the link allowing us to continue the conversation with Bieber fans.

Results

Sales rose by 31%.

Sales of Purpose went up 31% over the campaign period, and returned to its previous peak chart position, despite the fact that the album had been out for five months already. When Justin Bieber himself saw the campaign while in the UK for the Brit Awards he emailed the CEO of Universal Music to say he was ‘genuinely thrilled’.

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