What kind of music captures Hillsdale’s vibe? Though students may have differing ideas, they can help cultivate Spotify playlists that represent Hillsdale through a Marketing Department initiative.
The Hillsdale Marketing Department puts together Spotify playlists to connect with the student body and represent student life on campus.
Social Media Manager Gianna Green had the idea during remote learning last spring as a way to connect students separated by the lockdowns. Green oversees the student blog, and noticed that there were popular student posts which included links to Spotify playlists. When she saw a QR code on a bottle of wine that led to an accompanying Spotify playlist, it finalized her decision to make a Hillsdale Spotify account.
“It’s the perfect way to bring students together, though apart,” Green said.
Student Blog Writer and Spotify Manager senior Asa Hoffman is responsible for making the playlists, and Green, along with Marketing Manager Sterling Wertanzl, manage the account.
“It’s music people at the college are familiar with,” Hoffman said. “It’s meant to be a cultural meeting place.”
During quarantine, the playlists provided students with something that reminded them of school. Playlists are inspired by locations and activities on campus. The first playlist is called “Lavender Latte @ Penny’s,” followed by “Meet Me at AJs” and “Up the Hill.” There is also a game day playlist, a workout playlist, and a road trip playlist.
Recently, Hoffman branched out to different styles by making jazz, classical, and decades playlists.
Wertanzl said the team relied on crowd-sourcing to pick the songs.
“At first we were taking recommendations from students through the college Instagram, which I run, so I could directly add favorites to get specific mood playlists going,” Wertanzl said. “Now we are expanding into more rigid genres like jazz, classical, and decades, which Asa brainstorms up.”
The “Hillsdale’s Own” playlist features original music from Hillsdale student bands. The last song on “Lavender Latte @ Penny’s” is a Jon Bellion cover by seniors Taryn Murphy and Caroline Greb. Hoffman hopes to showcase more original student music as more bands record.
The Marketing Department has received a lot of positive feedback on the playlists. They are looking to become Spotify creators by uploading more original Hillsdale music, particularly the Hillsdale Alma Mater sung by the choir. Once creators, they will be able to determine how many people are listening.
Wertanzl shared what she likes most about the Spotify account.
“I think it really expresses the interests of the student body in a fun way that isn’t geared towards donors or prospective students,” she said. “It’s just music that Hillsdale students like, made by Hillsdale students for Hillsdale students. There’s a cool kind of ethos that comes with that because it’s a direct representation of student life as presented by students, so it’s a great way to bring campus together over something as simple as music.”