Interac turns spending habits into songs

A new tool turns payment data into tracks that help Canadians hear when spending on certain things goes up and down.

Interac has developed a novel new way to teach Canadians about their own spending habits.

Through its “Sound of Spending” campaign, developed with AOR Zulu Alpha Kilo, the payments brand is using data about consumer spending to compose unique musical pieces – including one track that resulted from an analysis of one and a half years of anonymized Interac Debit shopping transactions.

The song reflects spending on food, home, entertainment, travel and shopping, mapping each of the categories against a different musical instrument. Where spending is high, the tone and tempo of the music rises. Where spending is lower, the tone and tempo drops as well. Canadians can track the boom periods for various industries through the pandemic, as well as follow the country’s path toward economic recovery.

Interac has also made the tool available to Canadians so they can create an individualized soundtrack to their own spending habits across the same spending categories.

The project is intended to help make information about consumer spending more accessible to a broader audience by communicating “our day-to-day connection with [Canadians] in their own language,” said Wain Choi, ECD at Zulu. “Music is one universal language we can all relate to, whether we have a deep grasp of our finances or are just learning to navigate our spending.”

The campaign is part of Interac’s overarching InLife brand platform, which launched in April with a pair of aspirational ads intended to encourage Canadians to chase their dreams – while using their own money. This campaign reinforces the payments brand’s commitment to promoting financial literacy.

Paid assets on Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, native content and a new Spotify podcast round out the campaign, which will run for six weeks with the tool available on an ongoing basis. Media was planned by Media Experts, while Hill+Knowlton handled PR.