As 2020 draws to an end and consumers are busy figuring out details of their Spotify 2020 Wrapped, Subway Malaysia decided to put its own spin on the trend. In a Facebook picture with a colour scheme similar to that of Spotify Wrapped, the sandwich chain featured a Subway wrap with the caption: "Keep it together, 2020 is almost over." It also used the hashtag #SubwayWrapped.
Done in collaboration with VaynerMedia Asia Pacific, the post also read: "What's the one sub that helped you get through it all?", referencing one of the popular segments in Spotify Wrapped that typically showcases one main song that helped listeners tide through the year. In a statement to A+M, Ee Laine Hang, Subway's marketing director for Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Macau said the annual wrapped playlists and data [by Spotify revealed a lot about how people are feeling this year - sad.
Seeing so many netizens thank their top-streamed artistes for creating tunes that helped them get through this tough year, we acknowledged that and thought of how Subway Malaysia could spread some positivity too. Through a simple reminder to stay resilient with 2020 coming to an end. Since Subway’s menu carries a wrap as well, we thought of tying it back to the brand with a quick visual pun," she explained.
Hang added that this trendjack is also part of its larger always-on strategy of being attuned to what is culturally relevant in the social sphere, which is very important for a brand and agency today.
Subway is adept at trendjacking. Last month, shortly after Burger King encouraged consumers to order from other restaurant chains including KFC, Domino's Pizza, Subway, Sushi Shop and Five Guys, it jumped at the chance to encourage consumers to order from anywhere. The brand added that it has felt the pinch during these challenging times and others definitely more so than Subway. "Some restaurants have thousands of staff, some have barely two, but all of us rely on the chance we might get to delight you with your favourite meals now more than ever," it said in a Facebook post then.
In October, it also jumped on the “How it started vs how it's going” trend, which showcases how far the featured brand has come. Subway took a tongue-in-cheek approach to show how irresistible its sandwiches are. What started as a full sandwich ended up devoured soon.
Meanwhile, Spotify noted that 2020 saw an increase in nostalgia-themed playlist and a 1,400% increase in work-from-home themed playlists. Health and wellness podcast listening also saw a 180% yearly increase. With social distancing measures in place, Spotify said there was an increase in people streaming from home by way of the playlists they created and there was a 55% jump in Spotify streaming on gaming consoles.
Garden-themed playlists grew more than 430% while there was an approximate 50% increase in DIY stylists creating at-home haircut playlists. The platform also witnessed a nearly 40% increase in cleaning-themed playlist creation. At the same time, 2020 also called for the amplification of Black voices across songs, playlists, and podcasts. There were more than 64 million streams of Spotify's Black Lives Matter playlist and nearly 65,000 playlists created by users were titled "BLM" or "Black Lives Matter".
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