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Nudgestock 2023 - Getting Messy

Nudgestock 2023 - Getting Messy

Written by

Adam Castleton


July 10, 2023


Startle news

We sponsored the most important day in the behavioural science calendar! Here's what went down...

Behavioural science is our bread and butter. So when we made the decision to sponsor Nudgestock 2023, we knew we had to bring some rock and roll with us…

What is Nudgestock?

Nudgestock - which, this year, is running as part of MAD//Fest - is the world’s biggest festival of behavioural science and creativity, attracting all with a thirst for knowledge and an appetite to understand the human animal. So, of course, we had to be a sponsor.

Music for mooching, for meeting, to network and natter…

This wasn’t your run-of-the-mill sponsorship.

Firstly, we had the delight of curating the soundtrack for the event. It was designed by our team using music data, an expert human ear, and a generous sprinkling of behavioural science.

The courtyard playlists were themed in soul, funk and disco. Stylistically, these are branches of the same tree, giving a coherent sound across the day. Acquiring arousal (energy) track data, we designed the playlists to increase in energy throughout the day to build momentum and end the event with a bang (Peak-End Rule and all that).

We made sure that the auditorium music was a little different; house-inspired and repetitive, with deep textures and minimal vocals. We wanted something energetic, but not too hard hitting, so opted for a BPM (Beats Per Minute) range of 115-125. This was designed to allow conversations in between presentations; a blanket of atmosphere that wasn’t too foreground.

If you’re interested in what we chose, you can treat your ears to a listen and enjoy the courtyard playlist on Spotify here.

Air guitar anyone?

As well as providing music for all areas of the event, we challenged attendees of the event to join us in an epic showcase of air guitar skills. 

Luckily we had over 50,000 air guitars to shift, so there was plenty to go around. Part-time Startle employee and full-time rockstar Tim “The Plectrum” Plester was on hand to oversee the performances, taking the opportunity to show us how it’s done, including the iconic Sweet Child of Mine air guitar solo. We even had the wonderful Rory Sutherland show us his epic skills on stage.

In case you missed out your air guitar care instructions, please see below.

Atmospheres that Sell

Alongside providing music and first class air guitar entertainment, Nudgestock gave us the perfect platform for sharing our recently released book, Atmospheres That Sell. 

Stacked full of useful information, examples, and tips about how to run your sites more like an extension of your brand and marketing function, Atmospheres That Sell is a first-of-its-kind behavioural science book specific to retail and hospitality.

To our amazement, we sold out in seconds. But if you’re dead set on getting a copy, don’t worry, you can request one here.

Behavioural Science in action...

It was great to see some behavioural science principles in real life- whether it was the idea of scarcity increasing the value of an item with our sold out air guitars, or even social proof very early on in the day when our stall suddenly had a queue of attendees assuming they needed a Startle wristband to get in, it was super interesting to take part. FYI, they formed a very orderly queue.

What a day!

Nudgestock 2023 was a knowledge-filled, rock and roll day celebrating behavioural science. We saw some of the most incredible air guitar performances, had great conversations and heard some super insightful talks. Thank you to everyone who came to see us. 

We’ll see you next year!

To get a copy of our book, head here. Or get in touch here.

Nudgestock 2023 - Getting Messy

Adam Castleton

CEO at Startle. It's my job to lead Startle, ensuring that we have a positive impact on both our customers and our team, by delivering innovation and growth in a positive culture. When I'm not at my desk, you'll either find me at a customer's site, or in the forest with my wife and boys - my two happy places.

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Hey, we've just met you and this is crazy. But here's our number +44 (0)203 397 7676. So, call us maybe?

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