The salon franchise, Supercuts, has enlisted emerging music artists to launch an energetic, fully integrated campaign by ad agency, Element79, Chicago, dubbed “Rock the Cut”.
Independent artists featured in the campaign include four-piece band, Vintage Trouble, and electronic dance artist, DJ Ken Loi. The second wave of artists, to be released this summer, includes country artist, Laura Bell Bundy, and Chicago indie band, Gold Motel. The campaign will also include a concert promotion through American entertainment company, Live Nation.
The campaign is also supported by Supercuts’ first ever Artist Ambassador programme – an online community of over 600 bands and their loyal fans – as part of its larger word of mouth campaign.
Each “documentary-style” spot in “Rock the Cut” pairs a Supercuts stylist with featured bands and musicians, live concert footage, rehearsals and photo-shoots, which will provide the stage for the musical artists to share their pre-show rituals. The spots reveal that a good hairstyle is right in tune with stylish digs, sound-check and everything in between when it comes to gearing up for a show.
“The campaign was inspired by the way people talk about the things they feel good about,” says Creative Director, Chris Laubach of Element79.
“You can rock an outfit, you can rock a cool pair of shoes, and you can rock an awesome haircut. All of those things feed your confidence which is what we know everyone wants from a haircut. Whether they want something classic, or something kind of out there, Supercuts can rock that cut.”
The campaign takes a different route to conventional beauty and hair advertising which often feature big name celebrities or sports personalities. Element79 say the original idea was to feature new up-and-coming musical artists getting their hair styled. “Then we thought other emerging artists might also be interested in sharing their love of Supercuts,” says Laubach.
“And in exchange we could get them some national exposure to help get their music heard by more and more people. 600 was not some magic number. It's just how many artists initially expressed interest in the program and had appropriate music for Supercuts to play.”
Music lovers not only have access to new releases for free from the four featured artists via a customised music and discovery page but also the opportunity to unearth new music and biographies from hundreds of under-the-radar artists covering tens of genres, including funk, jazz, hip-hop and Latin.
“We came up with the The Artist Ambassador program as way to provide national exposure to local and regional artists who might not otherwise have this opportunity,” says Ryan Heuser, Music & Entertainment Director at GMR Marketing, USA who partnered with Sonicbids to curate the 600 artists.
“It adds an incredibly exciting element to the overall campaign with regular outreach to a collective fan base of over 4.2 million music fans. It's an engagement platform we’ve not seen before at this magnitude. We've all gone into this as a partnership between the bands and the brand. We share a common goal in that we want to use traditional and social marketing to engage music fans in a cool, relevant way.”
“Rock the Cut” will extend over television, radio, print and digital platforms, which includes a year-long radio partnership where the Supercuts brand will sponsor four custom digital radio stations. Additionally, featured artists like Vintage Trouble will serve as social media brand ambassadors through digital channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare and Pinterest.
It is also accompanied by interactive campaign segments called "Rock the Box," a feature that allows browsers to put a private concert on their desktop. The performances show the bands squeezed inside a specially constructed white box sized around the height of the lead singer.
Video: "Rock the Cut" with band, Vintage Trouble.
Production took place over five days. The interview portions were shot by hybrid company Detox, New York, at a Supercuts in Long Beach, California and concert footage was shot at sound stages and music venues in Los Angeles and San Diego, California.
The Supercuts franchise was founded in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1975 and has over 2,000 locations in the US and some in the UK.
Image: 'Rock the Cut' poster