In the late 90’s English Musician, Brian Eno created the Windows 95 startup chime. It went on to become the most recognizable pieces of music ever. From Airtel’s classic advertising jingle to Britannia‘s ‘Ting ting ti-ting’, sonic signatures have always been popular among brands. Sonic brand identity or product jingles encourage the listener to subconsciously recall a brand.
Sonic branding reinforces the brand’s identity using sounds. It conveys a brand’s core values and attributes in an emotional direct way. It appeals to the deepest emotional instincts and bypasses our rational brain.
Creating a Sonic Brand Identity
Identify the Brand’s Essence
Before you begin the process of building the sonic brand identity, you will have to understand the core beliefs and values of the brand. To translate the mental image of the brand into a musical language, the brand has to work closely with the sonic branding strategist and composer.
Sonic Logo Composition
Sonic brand identity adds a new dimension to the brand’s identity. It represents the musical DNA of the brand. MasterCard tapped artists, musicians and agencies across the globe to develop its sonic brand identity.
MasterCard partnered with Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park to create the melody. Sonic signatures are usually 3-5 seconds while the core melody could range from 60 -90 seconds. The process of developing the sonic brand identity also involves focus groups and neuro research across different markets.
Similarly, Visa also released an SDK to enable developers to test a group of sensory branding services that use sound, animation and haptic cues to let cardholders know when digital and in-store payments are completed.
Building a Long Term Audio Strategy
In order to build a long term audio strategy, you will have to develop an eco-system of audio assets. For instance, along with the core 90-second anthem, MasterCard has also created regional variations.
Sonic brand identity is more vital for brands you cannot see or touch. As digital continues to be the preferred medium for customers, brands have to appeal to all senses – sight, hearing and even taste.