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Cup Noodles targets music streamers in first U.S. campaign in years

Cup Noodles is turning to mobile music streaming to promote its brand with a new SoundCloud  campaign that puts the focus on new music.

The brand will be streaming music by amateur artists on its SoundCloud page, which customers can vote on. This campaign is an attempt to cash in on the popularity of mobile music streaming services that have grown in popularity as radio has been left behind.

"With the Cup Noodles brand we want to champion up-and-comers from all walks of life ? whether it's a musician, comedian or college student looking to ace that next exam," said Leslie Mohr, vice president of marketing for Nissin Foods USA. "We're embarking on this campaign by focusing on musicians in a big way, but our goal is to provide a spark to warm-up acts across all industries. We know that our core noodle fans are constantly aspiring to get to that next level."

Mobile streaming
Years ago, radio was one of the biggest media channels in the world and it was one of the surest ways to gauge the popularity of music of the day.

Now, however, with the advent of streaming and digital music services, radio has become increasingly irrelevant.

Consumers have more control than ever over their music listening habits and are using that control to discover newer, smaller artists who they may never have found before.

Cup Noodles is capitalizing on this shift with a new campaign that uses the mobile music streaming service, SoundCloud, to introduce customers to new musicians.

Cup Noodles is hosting a contest where it will stream tracks from lesser-known EDM artists on its SoundCloud page.

From there, consumers can vote on which one they like best. The winner will have the opportunity to open for prominent EDM group Cash Cash.

The campaign is part of Cup Noodles? larger effort to promote brand awareness after the company made a major change to its recipe.

The campaign is the brand?s first in the U.S. in years.

SoundCloud x Cup Noodles
Cup Noodles is taking an interesting stance on this campaign, making the brand secondary to the content of the campaign itself.

This might seem counter-intuitive, given that Cup Noodles is marketing itself in the U.S. for the first time in years and would likely want to make the return of the brand the focus of the campaign.

Instead, Cup Noodles is putting the spotlight on the musicians and using its brand name only as a backdrop.

The company is doing so in a smart way. Mobile music streaming has taken off in recent years and the Billboard charts have just begun to count Pandora streams when calculating rankings (see story).

Other brands have turned to music streaming as well, such as Target, which hosted a branded song on a Spotify playlist last month (see story).

These campaigns show that mobile music streaming might be the next new frontier for brands to get their message across to consumers.

"We know how hard it is to break through in the music world; it's taken years and years of hard work to make a dent," said Jean Paul Makhlouf, one member of Cash Cash. "That's why this is so cool what Cup Noodles is doing ? up-and-coming artists need all the help they can get ? so receiving a spark like this goes a long way. We can't wait to play our show and help this DJ get some attention."