Case Study for Basecamp

After digging deep into Basecamp, considering how they reach their clients, reading blogs and interviews with the owner, Jason Fried, watching the site, Twitter, and of course using the product and observing the benefits and challenges while using the application with a team—my gut and a lot of evidence told me Basecamp would benefit from having a positive emotional impact with there ads. Currently, they have a quantitative approach getting new users; i.e. 5,702 users signed up this week! This is great however research shows people are 50% more likely to respond to an ad that has an emotional appeal. I wanted to use sound to provoke a positive feeling in listeners while promoting the brand.

Defining Target Markets and Goals:

  • Target: Workers
  • Create a positive brand association between the workers and the brand.
  • Inform new people about the Basecamp brand and capture new users.
  • Retain users (Basecamp has less users than they did in 2011, so I wanted to infiltrate loop and create reminders to use Basecamp through sound ads on WBEZ and WGN). 


Additionally, as a frequent listener to the podcast, 99% Invisible, I had recently heard the Episode, The Sizzle. This episode dives into brands and sounds—the orchestrated sound of the Apple computer when you turn it on, to the sizzling fajitas of Chili's. I decided on sound campaign targeted at people on their way to work. Here are several benefits to current users and potential users:

  • Starting one's day by hearing a Basecamp ad and a positive sound bite, would associate morning activities, getting ready for work, breakfast, commuting, with a positive attitude around the brand. 
  • Reminder to Basecamp users to open the application when they get to work.
  • Believe this could help build a positive emotional feeling around the brand.
  • Research supported sound a based campaign, that could conjure a positive response when thinking about Basecamp. Positive sounds would be used in radio ads, commercials, and at coffee shops that are partners with Basecamp.