Have you ever head of acoustic branding? It’s the idea of using music, sounds, speech and rhythms to bring a brand to life. I learned about it via an email I received this week from Wilbert Hirsch, CEO and cretive partner of Audio Consulting Group (ACG), which offers acoustic branding strategies. It caught my attention.
Of course, it was a PR pitch. But what Hirsch said intrigued me: “More companies are looking for new ways to reach out to their customers. Although digital is the big hype, some businesses have realized that a mute brand stays unheard. Today, there are strategic and creative methods available to help design a living brand — one that communicates through more than one sense.”
I did a little research and found that in the ’90s ACG developed a method for companies to incorporate acoustics (music, sound and speech) into their brand identities, and then to develop strategies for implementation. Basically, ACG says that through an analytical framework, it can match a company’s values and existing visual identity with an acoustic identity. It also claims companies that have used its system have shown improvements of up to 30 percent in brand perception.
ACG says that acoustic branding can work with myriad touchpoints, such as advertising, multimedia, mobile, retail spaces, call centers, websites, podcasts and events. Its clients include UBS (Swiss bank), BMW, Autodesk and T-Mobile.
For Autodesk, for example, ACG developed an acoustic identity that resulted from a detailed analysis of the Autodesk brand and the specific needs of Autodesk University. The acoustic elements are now employed in relevant contact points — phone, video and walk-on music.
While I’ve never really sat down and thought about it before, I guess the music that brands play during trade shows or on their websites does have a sort of subconscious effect on me. What about you? Is this something you’ve experimented with or wish to in the future? Let me know by posting a comment below.