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Advertising and Brand Building

Is Music the most critical ingredient in Advertisements?

We get bombarded each day with dozens of adverts in different forms. Whatever media you consume, you are likely to come across some brand or products vying for your attention.

Among all the media that we consume, videos are the most effective in terms of recall. Often in the past, I have taken part in discussions on whether we should incorporate TV commercials with music, or choose other forms of storytelling, like humor, or drama. More often than not, we chose to go with good music. The times we opted not to do so, our advert recall did not go as well as expected.

So, over the years, I have come to firmly believe that good music is the key ingredient in order to engrave a commercial in the minds of consumers. Think of it this way: look back at the past 20 years of advertising, and try to remember the ads you watched as a child, which ones do you recall? Or which ads did you inadvertently mimic as a child?

I bet, in most cases, it would be jingles. Jingles are catchy and memorable. Not only that, music can be used to influence moods, to appeal to the emotions, to evoke feelings. Besides, the music used is often unique and easily identifiable.

Now, the type of music you choose would depend on what your brand wants to communicate. Usually, new brands start with functional content. Their ads are focused on informing consumers about the features, inducing them to try their product. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sb2AvdjZwcM

While, some brands go beyond the functional appeal to emotionally touch consumers, to make them feel the way you want them to with respect to the brand. And what better than to use music for the same?

In all these adverts, the strongest element is the music. There are very few other adverts which made it through the test of time.

Nowadays, brands have taken up the form of story telling in adverts to spread messages that appeal to the goodness inside you, to associate with what you feel about the world around you. It is an extremely powerful way of bringing brand relevance to your consumers.

Music, coupled with strong story telling: can’t be a stronger package than this. Watch this advert which blew my mind away a couple of years ago.

Actually, this Philips advert is the reason why I decided to blog about this topic today. It is an inspirational on how everyone can make a difference. This advert probably would not have had the same effect on me without the background tracks, which happens to be an acoustic version of the song “Revolution” by The Beatles. Music holds a powerful appeal.

In fact, I was digging into this advert and realized that the same song was used in its original form by Nike in 1987. It did revolutionize the Nike business.

Within 2 years of launching this advert (which was in 1987), Nike doubled its sales. The core message of the advert of empowerment and transcendence resonated with the masses and by 1991, Nike had a market share of 29% in the global athletic shoe market. Of course, the song was not the sole factor, but it had its role to play.

A couple of the most memorable P&G adverts were during the Rio Olympics (2016) and the London Olympics (2012). These 2 adverts were powered by two beautiful tracks from Ludovico Einaudi’s composition (“Experience” and “Divenire”).

Einaudi has been one of my favourite musicians for a long while now, but listening to him in P&G adverts had the most uplifting experiences.

To end this post, I leave you with this wonderful video by AIB which summarizes my memories of Indian advertisement during my younger years. I hope you enjoy this beautiful rendition. 

I am always open to contradictory opinions, or valuable feedback, so please feel free to drop a comment below!

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