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From the 12th Annual Shorty Awards

Google Pixel 4: Rebel for Reggaeton

Entered in Multicultural Community Engagement

About this entry

To make the Pixel 4 famous, we celebrated its first-to-market feature, Motion Sense, which enables users to change or restart a song by making a swiping motion above the phone. With the Pixel 4, we knew we had something truly special in our hands.

Our analysis found that a segment of Latin X consumers were a mobile-first audience, with 43% “planning a smartphone switch or upgrade in the next year” and 42% believing camera quality as a top priority consideration (iAB).

This phone’s features alone could make headlines, but the right cultural touchpoints could make our Latin X audience consider choosing Pixel by showcasing that the phone’s technology could change the way they interacted with music that they loved.

Why does this entry deserve to win?

Music is so ingrained in Latin X culture, spanning generations and genres and an integral part of the community; from bolero and salsa to today’s epic rise of Reggaeton. Latin X music has now “crossed over” into the mainstream and become more popular than Country and EDM in the U.S (Forbes).

But the urban and reggaeton artists, particularly the female artists, were being overlooked and snubbed by the Recording Academy, finding little to no nominations at the 2019 Latin Grammys.  Bolstered by learnings from last year’s Latin Grammys, we closely monitored the award show news that was in contrast to Latin X artist sentiment and commentary on social. And it turns out, there was a LOT of commentary. Leading artists (and last year’s winners) all posted anti-Grammy photos with the hashtag #NoHayLatinGrammysSinReggaeton (which translates to “There is no Latin Grammys without Reggaeton), in protest and vowed not to attend the award show.

To illustrate Pixel’s challenger positioning, we needed to partner with talent who shared our ethos and personified all aspects of a challenger. Someone who could authentically communicate and gain traction with the Latin X audience. We found that challenger in Karol G.

Despite being one of the highest streamed Reggaeton artist and winner of last year’s Best New Artist, Karol G did not receive any nominations for her new album. We teamed up with her to hijack the biggest stage outside of the Latin Grammys - and gave both her and Pixel 4 a platform to challenge and stand out. And while Karol G boycotted the event, she was still very much a part of the show.

Weeks before launch, protests erupted against the lack of representation in nominations beyond just the designated urban category. Karol G, Grammy winner of last year’s Best New Artist, was among the top artists publicized for protesting. Despite the controversy, we flipped the script and convinced Google to stand behind our original strategy and talent - zoning in on Karol G, who we stood by and promoted her new song and our partnership everywhere.

We gave Karol G the spotlight she deserved while highlighting the latest Pixel 4 features:


Through this campaign, we delivered a first-to-market tech-driven performance while delivering the key objective: cultural fame amongst our key audience:




Video for Google Pixel 4: Rebel for Reggaeton

Entrant Company / Organization Name

PHD Media, Essence, Google