5 Seconds of Summer, Alison Wonderland, The Rubens and 360 have just launched a huge campaign with EXTRA® Gum to support Australia’s grassroots music scene.

Announced last night during Universal Music Australia’s annual conference in Sydney, the Support Acts program has paired 16 of Australia’s up and coming musicians with the established acts for a series of 60+ pre-roll ads on YouTube.

Blending creativity and data analytics, Support Acts works like this:

Making the most of that first five seconds when consumers’ attention needs to be grabbed, pre-roll ads featuring the up-and-comers will play before the artists’ music videos. An algorithm will aggregate the number of views to determine which Support Act had the most engagement from Australian music fans.

The four Support Acts with the most engagement in their group will perform at the UMA 2018 ARIA Week showcase in November and receive a mentor session and studio day with their hero artist.

EXTRA Support Acts is a platform that essentially let’s emerging artists go view-for-view with Australian music royalty,” reads today’s announcement.

Extra Support Acts with wrigley

Created in partnership with Clemenger BBDO Sydney, Universal Music Australia, UMA’s branded entertainment agency BRING, MediaCom, and YouTube, the idea was an A3 sheet of paper on a wall for two-and-a-half years before its roll-out today.

At a panel event held at Doltone House yesterday, EXTRA® Gum’s Marketing Director, Alison Levins said Wrigley’s last ‘Eat. Drink. Chew’ campaign “wasn’t working particularly well” at bringing new, younger customers on board.

“The gum category globally and in Australia has been on the decline for 10-15 years and it’s the same pattern in every market […] Gum used to be quite cool back in the day but we realised we needed to take a change in direction.”

That change in direction was Wrigley’s ‘Time to Shine’ campaign, with the Support Acts brief won by multi-award-winning marketing communications company Clemenger BBDO.

Clemenger BBDO Creative Director Brendan Willenberg said this campaign was tricky in its brief as they weren’t competing against other gums, they were competing against other music platforms.

At UMA’s panel event last night Willenberg said: “When [Wrigley] identified that they wanted to get involved in music it was like you’ve got Red Bull Music Academy, you’ve got Boiler Room, you’ve got all these other platforms that you need to show up and […] give something back.”

Naturally, Clemenger needed help negotiating with talent; that’s where BRING and UMA came in.

Universal Music Australia, Managing Director, New Business, Roddy Campbell said, “We’ve seen all manner of branded music platforms and really feel this will be one of the best – an authentic role for the brand that creates value for consumers and artists alike. Our acts have been so passionate about supporting the next generation of talent and I think that shines through in the engaging content we’ve created with them. We can’t wait to see how the journey unfolds!” 

Global artist Alison Wonderland, who has over 239,000 subscribers on YouTube, said her involvement in the campaign was a no-brainer at the panel last night:

“When it was first presented to me I was in 100%,” she said. “I really want to offer whatever I can to anyone starting out because I wish I’d had that. […] It seemed like there was a lot of respect for the actual artists that were chosen.”

The Support Acts program is an Australian-first for YouTube. Head to www.youtube.com/ExtraSupportActs to vote by watching, liking and sharing.