Spotify Wrapped was bigger than ever, but not everyone’s a fan

Some have been quick to point out the app’s...questionable wording and design choices.
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It’s that time of year again, when Spotify takes the songs we’ve listened to over the last year and feeds our egos or embarrasses the hell out of us.

The theme for its 2021 Wrapped campaign is the new normal, accompanied by online and in-person ads highlighting things this year that were everything but—from angry gardening to having a “no bones day.”

  • Spotify’s global head of brand design, Rasmus Wangelin, said in a blog post that it’s important the design “matches the sentiment of the way we’re talking about the year conceptually.”

New features were added to this year’s in-app Wrapped experience, including an “Audio Aura” and a game of Two Truths and a Lie that quizzes users on their listening habits. This also marked the first year that users could post their results directly on TikTok.

But while some eagerly shared their year in streaming (Taylor’s Version), others were less impressed with the annual data dump:

  • Journalist Elle Hunt wrote in The Guardian that Wrapped is “little more than free advertising” for Spotify, adding that it reduces music to a numbers game largely dictated  by the company’s algorithm.
  • On a surface level, critics had something to say about the wording used this year, which felt a bit, “How do you do, fellow kids?”
  • The font choices were also subject to memery.

Last year the company saw a 21% increase in app downloads in the first week of December after Wrapped was released. If they’ll surpass that number this year isn’t clear yet, but one thing’s for sure:

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