After making its voice heard with the first international congress for acoustic brand communication in 2009, the Audio Branding Academy will present the second Audio Branding Congress in November this year. With the motto “Driven by Sound”, on November 5th brand and sound experts from all over the world will meet in Hamburg to discuss latest trends and exchange information about the state of the art of audio branding & sound branding.
This year’s congress focuses on the crucial question of what brand and sound worlds in future vehicles will sound like. Correspondingly, car manufacturer AUDI will present the concept and examples of its award-winning Corporate Sound.
Besides other best practice cases of audio & sound branding, internationally renowned scientiests like British… Continue reading →
Sound Branding (Audio Branding, Acoustic Branding, Sonic Branding) is the process of development, implementation and management of Sound Branding Elements. It includes all sound elements that are exclusively composed and produced for a brand. The key elements are: sound logo, brand song, sound icons, brand score, brand hookline and brand voice. These elements should mirror the brand values and brand personality in their acoustic dimensions and should acoustically distinguish a brand from its competition as well as from other existing sound elements in the field of communication.
Next to differentiation and communication of brand values additional benefits for brand communication are: …. Continue reading →
Brands have used music to leverage their brand communication for years now. Nothing new. New is to integrate Sound Branding elements into a song. But let’s start from the beginning…
Coca Cola has been developing its international FIFA World Cup Celebration campaign around “Wavin’ Flag”, a track by Somalian-born Canadian-based hip hop artist K’naan. “Wavin’ Flag” was first released in March of 2009, but it was only once the Celebration Mix was released that it climbed up the international charts. The Celebration Mix, renamed “Waving Flag”, was rewritten and recorded several times in the build up to the FIFA World Cup, with bilingual versions featuring artists singing in Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, French, Greek, Naija, Chinese and Indonesian. The track has gone to number one on the charts in fifteen countries (according to Billboard.com).
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.
The Old Spice TV ad “The man your man could smell like” has scooped this year’s Cannes Film Lions Grand Prix. Jury president Mark Tutssel described the ad as “the perfect film – it took an old sleeping brand and woke it up. Overnight it became a cultural phenomenon and captured the imagination of the planet.” The spot was released four months ago on the Old Spice you tube channel:
From a Sound Branding perspective it is an interesting case as Old Spice uses different Sound Branding elements. In the above commercial it is the “Ye ol’ classic whistle” at the end. In a different spot the “P..P..P..P…Power” Sound Branding element is integrated at the end of the commercial:
Brand Song is a track which was either exclusively written for the brand (e.g. Langnese: “Like ice in the sunshine”) or was licensed exclusively for the band from existing repertoire (e.g. Microsoft: “Start me up”).
The brand song is then consequently used in brand communication (e.g. Becks: “Sail away”). From a Sound Branding perspective the brand song should incorporate all relevant Sound Branding elements, i.e. the sound logo, the brand hookline, the brand voice and overall reflect the identified Acoustic Identity of the brand.
Are your sound elements becoming brand assets? I found an interesting blog post by Jenni Romaniuk on Randall Beard’s Blog which is describing how you can understand, identify, and build distinctive brand assets.
She states that music, jingles, and sounds can become distinctive assets, just like logos, colors, shapes, characters, or fonts. As examples she uses the Aflac duck, the Nike Swoosh, and Mastercard’s priceless advertising. For Europeans or Germans Milka‘s purple cow or Telekom’s “di-di-di-dii-di” are equivalent examples.
For these elements to become a real asset for the brand it is not enough to be used as part of the brand identity. The specific element has to be unique and prevalent. Only then this element can help to support brand identification or even replace the brand name in communication efforts. Continue reading →
Brand Score can be explained as the adequate acoustic setting (reflection of the brand values) as part of the brand communication. Compared to the brand song the brand score is more of a sound scape. It can be derived from the instrumental version of the brand song. Exemplary field of application: scoring of a radio spot or a corporate movie, background sounds at events, and supersonic sounding at the point of sale. The brand score reintegrates the sound logo and the brand hookline, if these elements exist.
Do you agree or disagree with this definition? Is anything missing in the definition we use? Please post your ideas in the comments section.
Is it a historic moment in marketing time? At least in the field of Sound Branding. AUDI, the premium german car manufacturer, just launched its new Sound Branding Identity. After one and a half-year of development a virtual “AUDI Sound Studio” is in place which is the basis for all creatives, composer and sound designer to create the AUDI sound.
Now the Sound Branding concept is implemented in the music of the new Audi A1 TV-Spot “The next big thing”:
and even the AUDI Sound Logo – as you can hear at the end of the commercial – has been face lifted.
“Our aim is to set us – even more – apart from our competitors”, says Lothar Korn, Head of Marketing Communication… Continue reading →
DeBeukelaer just started (10/3/30) a new TV Campaign in Germany including a newly developed Sound Branding. It consists of a Sound Logo (whistled at the beginning of the commercial) and a Brand Score which repeats the melody of the Sound Logo. The theme of the commercial is “joy” – the joy to eat DeBeukelaer cookies. It’s more of an image spot as it doesn’t feature a specific cookie version.
The question to me is: Do the sound character and the voice reflect joy?