As part of the partnership with Stockholm-based Star Stable Entertainment, the game will introduce an avatar of Siwa that will reside in the horse-filled fantasyland for 14 weeks. Aside from hearing the new song, players will be able to experience a dance choreographed for the Star Stable universe and dress up the avatar in Siwa-friendly accessories including her signature oversized bows. Added bonus for fans: Siwa's avatar will be accompanied by a game-ified likeness to her dog BowBow.
As music artists increasingly take to digital and social platforms to reach their young fans where they live, rooting the song's release in a game checked all the boxes, says Jen Tracy, SVP, partner marketing & creative advertising at Nickelodeon, to which Siwa is signed for all media.
"We had been talking with them about a partnership and realized JoJo was probably the perfect talent to bring together the two worlds of Nickelodeon and Star Stable, and a song would be a way to capture that audience globally and domestically," Tracy says.
"When you look at Star Stable, the game encourages exploration and adventure, and that's a lot of what we are doing as well," she adds. "So in addition to our audiences being aligned, our messages are also aligned -- and we're looking at it through that filter."
Also aligned are Siwa and Star Stable's fan bases. Siwa counts 6.5 million Instagram followers, 15 million-plus followers on Musical.ly and 6 million YouTube subscribers. Her music video "Boomerang," released in May 2016, has more than 490 million views and is RIAA-certified platinum. Star Stable has more than 14 million registered players from 182 countries, and the opportunity for cross-pollination among primarily young female devotees is music to both parties' ears.
"To our knowledge, this is the first time that a pop star has unveiled a new song in a video game. A first for Star Stable, for JoJo, for Nickelodeon and for the music industry," says Taina Malen, Star Stable chief marketing officer. "Star Stable is by nature without territorial restraints and is a unique platform for debuting JoJo's new single to an instantaneous and globally relevant audience of tween/teen girls. For JoJo, it's a great way for her to instantly reach to girls in 182 countries where Star Stable is played."
With her latest offering of positivity, Siwa wants to empower her fans and encourage them to stand up for each other. Siwa, who co-wrote the song with Jeannie Lurie and Matthew Tishler, says she'd had the concept in mind before the #MeToo movement but feels even more energized in the current climate.
"MeToo is a strong movement in Hollywood, but a lot of my fans and demographic are younger, and they don't really understand what's going on with it," she says. "I wanted to put something out for them, even for those who are 4 years old, that every girl is a super girl. No matter your age, your height, your weight, your color -- whatever you are."
Siwa will perform the song live for the first time during Nickelodeon's inaugural SlimeFest, June 9-10 in Chicago.