Samsung and Rihanna are building up anticipation for her next album, Anti, with a mystery game that is gradually unfolding and can only be played on mobiles.
At the end of October, Samsung signed a US$25 million deal to sponsor Rihanna’s upcoming album, Anti, and its tour.
The album is expected to be released on November 27, only for users of Jay-Z’s music streaming service, Tidal, where Rihanna is a co-owner. It will be released to the public on December 4.
The Samsung campaign for the album is built around a bizarre website and game, Antidiary.com that can only be opened on a mobile. Users are told, “She’s waiting for you. Are you in? Go to Antidiary.com on your mobile device.” There they swap their email address for an exploration of a mansion with eight different rooms, each related to an aspect of Rihanna’s life. Only the first one, Bedroom, is unlocked for now. Users move their phone around to search for clues, explore the space and watch more content. Eventually other rooms like her studio, closet, tattoo parlour and office will be opened.
A stick figure girl is being used as a campaign icon.
The album and its website are being promoted by a collection of 15 second trailers – essentially teasers for the site.
The campaign was given its first fully public airing at the American Music Awards, spearheaded by a 60 second commercial that joins the teaser elements into a story of sorts – Rihanna plays with a pair of children, who lure her down a hallway – where she picks up a key tagged with R8, the project name for the album – and toward a darkened doorway. The two children then morph into the crowned child on the Anti cover, which is Roy Nachum’s interpretation of Rihanna as a child.
“This is me as a little girl. I brought this one to [Nachum] and he really reinterpreted it his own way with exactly the message that I wanted,” Rihann revealed at the art launch party.
72andSunny New York worked with RocNation as well as Samsung’s partner agencies, RGA, Edelman, PMK•BNC and theater company Punchdrunk on the campaign.
The Samsung partnership follows a successful one with Jay-Z in 2013 for the release of his album, Magna Carta Holy Grail. This allowed people to get access to the behind-the-scenes video as well as early downloads of the album.
In his statement, Marc Mathieu, chief marketing officer of Samsung Electronics America, commented, “In today’s cluttered world, it’s important to break out and create unique, personal experiences that people are seeking in order to connect directly with consumers. We know that one of our consumers’ passion points is music so we decided to join forces with Rihanna because she is an icon of originality and ingenuity and one of the most wildly creative voices in culture today.”
He added that the campaign so far is “just the beginning of an unforgettable exclusive journey through Rihanna’s life story.” It “will take fans inside the mind of an iconic artist while blurring the lines between the digital and physical world.”
— the keyholder (@IAmTheKeyHolder) November 23, 2015
— Samsung Mobile US (@SamsungMobileUS) November 23, 2015