This can be attributed to the fact that most millennials, unlike previous generations, experience music through earbuds. Because of this, marketers seem to believe that music has become a playlist pushed to the background. However, it represents a huge opportunity in the marketing space. In fact, research shows that 91 percent of the U.S. population spends more than 24 hours per week listening to music. These figures show the untapped potential of using music to connect to consumers, in a way traditional visual aids simply cannot. Think about it: is someone more likely to remember the look of a poster from their childhood or the lyrics of a favorite song? Often, people will remember the song and its exact lyrics for years to come, which in turn will elicit memories and feelings that visual aids rarely do.
There are TV networks, movie production studios, and even companies that have signature melodies or notes we associate with them. These deliberate attempts to add music to their product creates a more holistic and memorable branding experience. One example is Intel — the five notes that come to mind whenever Intel is mentioned is by no means an accident, and acts as an effective marketing tool that has been integrated into almost every Intel product, commercial, presentation and more.
Russell Wallach, President of Live Nation, further elaborates on integrating music into marketing and branding. He says, “You’re seeing it today from many brands, whether it’s in their advertising or through supporting a concert or given artist. It can also be great for the artist, as the partnership can help provide extended exposure to a wider audience.”
For instance, take the partnership between Samsung and Jay Z. In a Samsung commercial, Jay Z announced he’d give away 1 million copies of his LP, “Magna Carta Holy Grail.” Fans were ecstatic about the release, and the Magna Carta Holy Grail app crashed because of the traffic load. Samsung gave Jay Z the air time to make the announcement and create excitement. In turn, they got a brand boost through their involvement with Jay Z.
Matthew Sommer, COO of Brolik very accurately points out, “Music helps brands to form an emotional connection with their target audience in a unique way, in that it affects a wider audience than most other forms of artistic expression. With so much competition for attention, advertisers can’t afford not to use every tool in their shed, especially one as emotive as music.”
Considering all this, why is music then often just an afterthought when it comes to brand exposure and marketing? One of the reasons could be the cost involved in collaborating with an already established artist for a signature tune, or even forming a partnership with the same. Most SME’s wouldn’t be able to afford these sort of partnerships—especially if they constitute only one part of their entire brand image. Secondly, music requires creativity that isn’t as easily available as other forms of expertise required for more traditional communication aids. Finding an expert to suit a particular company’s vision, mission, and also encompass its values to create a suitable “soundtrack” is difficult and again proves to be quite costly.
Keeping this in mind, music production in the life of branding seems like a perfect candidate for automation. Lately, automation has gained a lot of traction when it comes to content creation, especially in the video and graphic realm. This comes as no surprise considering that 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute! Bynderdefines branding automation as “a category of cloud-based software intended for use by brand management specialists. Branding automation automates and streamlines day-to-day operations by making each stage in the content lifecycle – creation, cultivation and consumption – more efficient, standardized, and scalable.” In general—branding automation allows for flexibility, personalization, and an integrated overall brand management system. It allows for new content to be created without worrying about duplicate content, achieving more with less man hours through a streamlined process. Branding automation solves the problems of expensive costs, increased rollout times, and inconsistency.
What many SME’s fail to consider is that today’s digital world offers a plethora of music automation platforms too—enabling specialized tunes to be created at the touch of a few buttons. This negates the need for costly experts and makes integrating music into brand imaging a viable option. Services such as iMuze allow the user to choose from various styles, add voice overs, change beats within a particular key set, and even more—resulting in a completely customized and unique soundtrack without having to consult live experts or artists. Tools such as these are accessible and affordable, and forge a pathway for companies to connect with consumers on a deeper and more meaningful level. Startups and SMEs that have embraced the digital revolution stand to gain a great deal from embracing technology and automation within their branding and marketing strategies. Cost analysis shows that new-age technological software—music automation in particular—can help level the marketing and branding playing field between SMEs and bigger companies, the latter of which have the resources to spare on campaigns that require large amounts of manpower.
It’s fair to say that music automation could be the answer to what is turning out to be a race for increased content creation in branding. Being easy to implement in today’s age, companies should leverage the untapped value of music rather than treat it as an add-on to the more widespread communication mediums. Music should be considered its own main entity, and given equal amounts of importance within branding. As opposed to a single pronged approach that is based upon visual cues, giving music an important seat at the branding table will result in an emotional connect with consumers, making for an immersive and holistic experience that is more likely to be remembered.
Vincent Brissot is the Head of Channel Marketing & Operations at HP. With some 14 years of experience in channel enablement, business development, and marketing, he has a comprehensive understanding of and expertise in the IT industry related to hardware, services, and software. Vincent has worked in multiple countries, in regional and worldwide roles across Enterprise and SMB market segments. You can follow Vincent on Twitter @VincentBrissot and also find him on LinkedIn.
This article was first published on LinkedIn.