Audio Branding Congress 2010: Audi Sound Branding Case

Initiators of the ABB: C. Ringe, K. Bronner and Rainer HirtFirst of all thanks to the organizing team & the initiators of the Audio Branding Congress (in the front row): Cornelius Ringe, Kai Bronner and Rainer Hirt!

Again it was another fascinating get together of Audio & Sound Branding Experts, Scientists and Brand Marketeers. The second international Audio Branding Congress took place in Hamburg, Germany, last Friday the 8th of November 2010.

One of the highlights was the presentation of the Audi Sound Branding case. However, and for me surprisingly, this case was discussed quite controversial after the presentation and especially at the get together party in the evening. Critics argue that the new Audi sound branding is missing a clear and memorable theme which is implemented in all commercials. At the moment the core elements of the Audi Sound Branding are: 10 instruments with a “unique” sound character, a motif and elements of the Sound Logo. These elements can be “re-arranged” by the individual musicians. They call it “Audi sound studio”.

Ms Margarita Bochmann, from Audi AG, agreed … Continue reading

Is music the international language?

When working on international Sound Branding projects clients often ask me whether music is international and can be used all over the world. So far to me classical, pop and Hollywood film music can be titled as international music which will be understood nearly all over the world. Nevertheless to be on the safe side on a Sound Branding project which is to be implemented worldwide local market research is the only safe way to go. You can imagine that the budget for such a research project is sky high.

So I am happy for every little piece of information about the recognition of music in an international setting, as academic research is limited. Now we have some more insights regarding this issue. It has long been debated which aspects of music perception are universal and which are developed only after exposure to a specific musical culture.

In a crosscultural study with participants from a native African population (Mafa) and Western participants results show that basic emotions in Western music can be recognized universally (Academic article: “Universal recognition of three basic emotions in music” Current BiologyVolume 19, Issue 7, 573-576, 19 March 2009).

In a first step the international researcher team … Continue reading

Instore Music – the power of emotional branding

Imagine, your are a brand manager responsible for all your branches, brand- and flagship stores (I hope you actually are…). These offer your brand great opportunities to reflect and thus communicate your brands image and emotional positioning through a unique music program.

Studies show that a music concept which fits to the brand, store and target group increases the time that customers spend inside the store. Overall, this leads to more purchases with a higher value – more revenue for your company – and brings additional value to the brand by strengthening its individual image.

However; instore music which supports your brand identity ….. Continue reading

Can music change people’s habits?

I just got a great video from a friend which underlines the power of music. It shows that music can even change habits of people. In a Stockholm subway station musical stairs were installed. Based on the incentive to play with music – each step represented a piano tone – many people took the stairs instead of taking the escalator.

From my perspective this case demonstrates… Continue reading

Sound Branding Term 5: Brand Voice

Thanks to the feedback from Tim Noonan, voice branding expert from Australia, this definition has been  improved:

Brand Voice is the voice that best reflects the ‘personality’ and brand values for a product, service or organisation. The most important aspects during the selection process of the brand voice are accent, gender, perceived age, tone, pitch, volume, rhythm and recognition value. Once a brand voice is chosen it is crucial to obtain exclusive usage rights, at least for your field of business, if not your brand voice could even harm your brand, particularly if the same voice is used for your competition, thus diluting or distorting your brand.

When selecting the Brand Voice the same voice should be considered for use across multiple channels associated with the brand, such as automated telephone services, advertising, instructional audio and of course within the product itself, if it is self-voicing.

What is better:  a voice talent or an actor?…… Continue reading