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Product design · Design Sprint Facilitation

The Mashup: 
Blending Music, Technology, and Philanthropy for Gen Z Donors

In a collaborative effort to engage a new generation of donors, our team embarked on an ambitious project to create a unique digital experience that blends music, technology, and philanthropy. An initiative was developed aiming to capture the interest of Gen Z donors by offering an innovative way to contribute to charitable causes.

The Challenge

In the face of declining regular giving trends, increased donor attrition, and economic downturns in Sweden, UNICEF is confronted with the urgent need to revitalize its fundraising efforts. With a significant market share in regular giving, UNICEF's dependency on donors necessitates innovative strategies to counteract negative trends and ensure sustained revenue generation.

In an effort to increase their regular donations, UNICEF invited Hyper Island students to identify a new target group within the Swedish market and to develop a tailored digital product to prioritize individual giving and recurring donations, while emphasizing regular, non-earmarked resources.

The Solution

Our selected concept, named "The Mashup," emerges as a creative collaboration with Spotify, featuring an AI-generated music component that offers users a unique song each month, tailored to their musical preferences, as part of their donation package.




Product Designer, Design Sprint Facilitator


Ten days to develop, test, and pitch the concept


We embarked on this journey by pinpointing our long-term objectives and the specific questions we aimed to answer through the sprint. Our exploration involved mapping the current user journey, identifying potential target audiences through a blend of academic and UNICEF-provided donor research, and analyzing competitors. Through this process, we recognized two promising demographics: Gen Z and Millennials, with a particular focus on Gen Z due to their increased inclination towards engaging in non-profit activities and their promising potential as lifelong donors. This shift towards a younger donor base underscored the need for creating innovative, technology-driven product designs to captivate and maintain the interest of this emerging audience.


Moving forward, we agreed on specific user journey segments in which to focus: the Awareness, Consideration and Decision stages. Leveraging techniques like the four-step sketch, we generated a range of low-fidelity concepts in three-panel storyboards. This ideation phase is crucial as it encourages a broad spectrum of creative thinking and problem-solving, allowing team members to visualize and propose potential solutions without the constraints of high-fidelity details.


Our selected concept, named "The Mashup," emerges as a creative collaboration with Spotify, featuring an AI-generated music component that offers users a unique song each month, tailored to their musical preferences, as part of their donation package. This innovative approach led to the development of a detailed storyboard, laying the groundwork for the prototyping phase. The storyboarding process unveiled additional functionalities, such as the option for users to engage with an existing initiative named "Press Play to Give." This initiative allows royalties to be donated each time the song is played, enabling the AI-generated song to further contribute to donations when shared publicly and played by others. This strategy not only enhances the user's donation experience but also amplifies the impact of their contribution through music.


Using Figma, we developed a clickable prototype to bring the user experience and interface concepts to life. This prototype was designed to validate our approach through meticulously selected screens.

For the Awareness stage, we introduced a Podcast Sponsorship screen, capitalizing on Gen Z's significant engagement with music streaming and podcast consumption—highlighting over 578 billion minutes of music streamed and a 58% increase in podcast plays year-on-year. This screen aims to capture their attention through mediums they are already deeply invested in. The selected podcast was “60 Songs that Explain the 90s” which is likely to appeal to Gen Z since 73% of them love when brands produce retro products or content and 68% like listening to and watching media from earlier decades.

To engage users in the Consideration stage, we developed a Landing Page with a Donation Form and an FAQ page. These components provide comprehensive information about the initiative and address common questions, facilitating a deeper understanding and connection with the cause.

The donation form helps the user in their Decision stage as it provides options to help facilitate the donation such as:

  • Frequency (monthly or one-time).
  • Amount (suggested SEK 111 or custom).
  • A message explaining what the suggested amount affords.
  • A consent toggle to receive messages about this project.
  • Payment options linked to the most popular methods in Sweden.

The objective is to provide clear, persuasive information and reassurances that can help alleviate any doubts or concerns, making the donor feel confident in their decision to engage with our initiative.

If the decision is favorable, donors are introduced to the Connect with Spotify screen. This integration allows us to tailor the user experience by analyzing their listening history, further personalizing their interaction with our initiative.

After making a donation, users are led to the Play AI Song screen, where they can experience the unique song generated for them, offering an immediate, tangible benefit of their contribution. This experience is further enriched by the opportunity to Add the Song to the Press Play to Give Initiative, visible from UNICEF Sweden’s account, promoting further engagement and potential viral spread of the initiative.

Lastly, the Song Overview screen serves as an ongoing engagement tool, showcasing a monthly collection of AI-generated songs. This not only incentivizes continued donations but also strengthens the donors' connection to the cause, by reflecting their growing impact over time.

Each screen has been strategically designed to guide users through the journey from initial awareness to active participation, ensuring a seamless transition through each phase while emphasizing the unique aspects of our concept.


As a last step, we tested with potential users. This approach of early and consistent testing allowed us to refine our concept from the beginning, ensuring that our solution not only appealed to our target audience but also delivered substantial value aligned with our objectives.

For recording and analyzing feedback, we utilized Lookback, a web-based tool designed for user interviews. Lookback facilitates session recording and provides transcripts, enhancing our analysis capabilities. Its virtual observation room feature stands out, enabling team members to watch the interviews live and engage with the interviewer in real-time, all without interrupting the flow of the interview.

Feedback from our test users was overwhelmingly positive, indicating strong resonance with our concept:

“I really liked the concept because it feels intriguing to get your own song! And it's very informative in a lot of what matters.”
– Greta
"It's fun and different than what I have seen before. I like the idea of the song providing donations as well so feels like you are double-donating. It’s an incentive to listen more to the song."
– Sesselia
"By making a donation you get a personalized song which is really nice, the investment for us is not big but can make the difference, that’s amazing"
– Bianca

This feedback underscores the effectiveness of our solution in engaging users and contributing to the cause, affirming our strategic direction and the potential for continued refinement and success.

Wrapping Up

The Mashup project exemplifies how agile methodologies can be effectively applied to solve business challenges through collaboration and creativity. By focusing on the user experience and leveraging the power of music and technology, we were able to introduce a novel approach to philanthropy that resonated with a younger audience. This case study not only demonstrates the potential for innovative digital solutions to engage new donor demographics but also highlights the importance of agile processes in developing and refining these solutions.

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