Culture & Sport

Shakira mentions brands in her new song Music Sessions #53. Marketers use the opportunity to connect with audience

The new song Music Sessions #53 released by Shakira, in which she criticizes her husband Gerard Piqué, became an instant success. And marketers have been already using the lyrics as a way to connect with their audience.

Renault Twingo Shakira
Renault Spain shared on Twitter an image of a Twingo model reacting to Shakira’s song Music Sessions #53, in which she criticizes her former partner Gerard Piqué who would now have a Twingo as a girlfriend instead of a Ferrari. | Renault Spain, Twitter

Shakira and Argentine producer Bizarrap released the new song Music Sessions #53 on January 12. It became an instant success. With 52 million views on YouTube in 24 hours, Music Sessions #53 is considered the biggest debut for a Latin song on the platform.

Social mentions of the song, in which she criticizes with punchy lyrics Gerard Piqué her former partner and recently retired football (soccer) player, have been trending since then. But social mentions of the brands included in the lyrics rose, too. Although she may not refer to them positively, it offers them a huge boost of visibility and brand awareness.

Shakira sings that her husband Gerard Piqué traded a Ferrari (Shakira) for a Twingo (Mr Piqué’s new girlfriend), the car manufactured by French automaker Renault. Shakira also compared herself to the luxury watch brand Rolex while the new girlfriend would be the far cheaper Casio watch.

As the song became wildly popular, especially in Latin America and Spain where Shakira and Gerard Piqué lived together and had two children, many brands took the opportunity to communicate on social media.

On its Spanish Twitter account, Renault shared an image of the latest Twingo car model and wrote “Pa tipos y tipas como tú. ¡Sube el volumen!” (For guys and girls like you. Turn up the volume!) as a reference to Shakira who mentioned incompatibility with her husband she separated from few months ago. The car even has a 22 logo on it, as a reference to the age of Mr Piqué’s new girlfriend, which was also mentioned by Shakira in her song. Renault added a hand of hashtags describing the qualities of the car.

Casio Spain also communicated using a play of words referring to Shakira’s song on Instagram: “Nos encanta que esto nos salpique” (We love that this splashes us). The brand uses one of the plays of words from the Colombian singer pointing out to Gerard Piqué (“sal-Piqué”). A few hours later, it also shared in an Instagram story a picture with Casio branding signs on the old but iconic model of a Renault Twingo while “remembering old times.”

In Colombia, the song, released a few weeks after MonotonÍa which also sounded inspired by her break-up, was used by brands to bring attention, too. Renault Colombia, although Twingo is not commercialized in the country anymore since 2014, wrote on Twitter that “Twingo will always love you Shakira.”

In Argentina, Renault wrote that “many do not need a luxury car to be happy, ask our customers how they enjoy life with a Twingo!” while the country has been suffering from economic difficulties and rampant inflation.

Rolex and Ferrari, which are quoted more positively, didn’t seem to react. The products are however exclusive with high standards, and their communications don’t seek to connect with a large audience through humor.

But even marketers whose brands are not mentioned by Shakira already use the song as a reference.

Other companies like Ikea, Netflix, lollipops brand Chupa Chups, home improvement and gardening retailer Leroy Merlin, chocolate brand Nesquik, retailer Dia, Taco Bell, and beer brand Estrella Galicia all referred to the song in recent posts on their Spanish social media accounts less than a day after its release.

TransMilenio, the bus transport system that serves Colombia’s capital city Bogotá, also wrote on its Twitter account: “Bigger than a Twingo, less luxurious than a Ferrari and we take you faster all over Bogotá.” It however received some negative comments about the quality of its service. Meanwhile, Latin American e-commerce site MercadoLibre also took advantage of the popularity of Music Sessions #53 to promote its online shopping features to buy a watch on the Colombian Instagram account.

100 Montaditos, a Spanish chain of restaurants, showed support: “Don’t worry Twingo and Casio, I’ve been through it, and you can get out of anything.” 100 Montaditos has been quoted by Cristiano Ronaldo’s wife, Georgina Rodríguez, when last year she explained how her life changed from eating at 100 Montaditos to enjoying luxury in Monaco.

KFC Spain even made fun of brands using the song as a communication opportunity.

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