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The Brief

Spotify Design and D&AD asked us to create a function that transforms Spotify into a social listening experience. However, I set myself the task to create an almost anti-social media. How can a function relieve the socially isolating effects and loneliness of common social media when you get a lack of likes and comments. How can having support groups within between friends within the app strengthen existing relationships through music sharing and discussion. Can I find creative ways to help community members feel valued all whilst making participation fun? 

Spark

A new format of social media where interactions between users moves from the public realm to a more private one. No likes or comments on public posts, you must message a person or group of people directly to interact. A movement from busy airport terminals to safe, private "digital campfires". 

Spotify Spark is an intimate, private and interactive approach to the social challenge where all it takes is a spark to share the music you love with the people that matter the most.

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Defining my audience

 

As part of this project I used the service design principles of personas and User Journey Maps. The helped me understand my given users’ needs, experiences, behaviours and goals. After completing these I found a number of essential outcomes that would ensure I was developing a feature that added social value for all users on Spotify

Defining my Audience

 

As part of this project I used the service design principles of personas and User Journey Maps. The helped me understand my given users’ needs, experiences, behaviours and goals. After completing these I found a number of essential outcomes that would ensure I was developing a feature that added social value for all users on Spotify

Outcomes

 

Below I will take you through all the new features that have been designed to complement the already existing Spotify platform but take it to the next level of sharing, starting with the all new profile;

The new customisable profile lets you express your musical identity and allows you to create something you want to share. New pinned tracks, albums and artists let you share what you're loving at the moment whilst tags now let you share your musical interests at the slightest glance. You'll also have a feed showing what the people you have been following have been listening to as well as your own listening and share history.

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Direct Sound Sharing with Messages

Introducing a DM system that allows you to send music directly to users if you need them to hear it right now. When you send songs to users you will select a 30 second part of the song that will be able to be directly played within the chat space. Start group chats and chat whilst a live event is going too so you can share music together. ​User can also opt-in AI assistance to help people get suggestions for albums and songs based on what audio your group has shared or discussed.

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Spark Campsites 

And for those who want to connect with more listeners as part of a community there is Spark camps, born out of a love for the certain genre of music, mood or podcast type. In the group other users are invited to post their own recommendations in, much like the music chat spotify already has. Groups would allow users to meet and follow like minded listeners.

No matter what sounds you love there will be a camp where you fit right in were you can all help each other find your next best obsession.

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Spark Scouts

Inspired by Spotify's Rock Stars and the phrase "they share their playlists as social currency and proof of their own passion" I think a way that people could gain their profile upgrades to a better profile or a page would be by sharing their own experience through the app. There would be a point system that once you got to a certain stage you would be able to have a better profile/page.

Users who have a passion for curating these huge playlists and make a skill of this, like in the personas, could also be rewarded by an upgrade on their profile with the option to make their profile a page for other like minded listeners.

Spark Scouts will be seen as a hub for new music and expertly curated playlists

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