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The Most Searched Songwriter

Finalist in Technology, Multi-Platform Partnership, Earned Media, Medium-Length Video


For Google's 25th anniversary, we looked back on the most-searched people, places, and moments of the past quarter century. In the world of music, one name dominated them all. In 2023 Taylor Swift became the most searched songwriter of all time. To honor this historic achievement, we ignited a fandom obsessed with cryptic puzzles and easter eggs, by creating a special Google Doodle with an interactive digital treasure hunt designed for Swifties hidden inside. This experience took fans on a collaborative social journey to unlock exclusive content including a Taylor Swift-inspired film and trends-centered website.

Our goal was to ignite the Swiftie fandom by crafting an easter egg hidden digital experience that not only resonated but challenged them, leading to global social collaboration and delight for users.


The campaign was anchored on the insight that Taylor Swift is the world’s Most Searched Songwriter. To uncover this, we sorted and ranked a quarter century’s worth of Search data, collaborating with the Google Trends Data team and subject matter experts to audit, calculate, and ensure an accurate crowning. We then dove into the world’s Taylor Swift-related Searches, identifying her most searched songs, lyrics, vault tracks, and more, for each of her ten eras.

Next, we took a deep dive into Swiftie culture in order to understand the passion and inside language that drove Taylor’s globally devoted fandom. This led us to understand Swifties affinity for puzzles, easter eggs, and treasure hunts and their unmatched sleuthing abilities.

So we set out to activate and delight them by building a digital experience unlike any other. One that encouraged them to work together on social media to crack a code and be rewarded with exclusive content – which they did, in record time, of course.

To make this happen, we collaborated with teams across our organization to create a custom Google Doodle that led users to The Most Searched Playground: an interactive scavenger hunt where people could seek and find 25 of the most searched things... and most specifically discover a hidden Taylor Swift-centric treasure hunt. 

Inside the experience, users had to find a set of easter eggs related to each of Taylor’s album eras. Upon finding them all, they unlocked one letter from a set of 21. This prompted collaboration with other Swifties worldwide to unscramble the letters and unlock a secret website URL. In parallel, they had to uncover the secret website’s password (sagittarius) by identifying the easter egg hidden in our accompanying Most Searched film.


The campaign received an outpouring of global interaction and ultra positive reception. Users spent over 1 million total hours with the Most Searched Playground, finding more than 5.5 million Taylor Swift easter eggs. 

We saw numerous user-generated posts about the campaign go viral, leading to millions of additional views and spikes in Search interest,  where “taylor swift google year in search” became a top 5 trending search. 

More than 275,000 fans successfully unlocked Taylor’s hidden microsite, with over 7/10 actively engaging with the site, including watching the previously unlisted Taylor Swift Most Searched Songwriter film, which went on to collect over 520,000 views. 

And on Instagram and X, cryptic Taylor Swift easter egg posts developed in partnership with her team garnered 1.3M likes and 600K views, respectively.

Overall, the Year in Search campaign, which included the Most Searched film and the Google Doodle game where Taylor’s scavenger hunt began, scored 3 billion impressions and over 10 million total engagements around the world, trended on X, and ultimately became the most-talked-about Google brand campaign ever.


Video for The Most Searched Songwriter

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