According to the Harvard Business Review study,
“There’s one powerful branding tool that has been generally overlooked, and perhaps undervalued by most marketers: “Sound!” The strategic use of sound can play an important role in positively differentiating a product or service, enhancing recall, creating preference, building trust, and even increasing sales… cognitive studies show that relevant sounds and musical cues can truly influence people in ways marketers want.”
A brand’s identity is incomplete without incorporating the strategic use of sound and music. While many have a strategically defined brand identity that includes usage principles for core visual and verbal components, most have no sonic identity, or it’s poorly managed. This is certainly a missed opportunity.
Music sets the tone, sparks emotions, motivates, conveys meaning and can change our mood in an instant. Research has shown that “brands with music that fit their identity are 96% more likely to be recalled than those with non-fit music or no music at all, and respondents are 24% more likely to buy a product with music that they recall, like and understand.”
How can you strategically incorporate sound as a part of your marketing and brand identity? Below, we’ll look at a wide variety of customer touchpoints and marketing opportunities in which music can be emotional engine to convey your brand’s purpose and increase sales.
First, there’s the telephone! Even with our fast-paced, on-the-go mobile society, the telephone is still the number one preferred method of contact by consumers with brands. It’s almost a given these days, that when calling into a business you’re first greeting be an automated attendant system. What does the voice of your brand sound like? Does the voice properly reflect your brand, and in a positive manner? Or, are you using an employee’s voice who may not even be with the company anymore?
Along with the telephone is sure to come on- hold time, it’s simply unavoidable. In fact, AT& T reports 70% of all business calls are placed on hold. This presents another critical opportunity to get your brand experience right, and capitalize on a highly targeted in-bound marketing opportunity with custom telephone music on hold messaging. Brands who use message on hold and music who see an increase in sales offers mentioned on hold by as much 25%, and keeps callers waiting on the line for up to 3 minutes. When calling into brands who have dead-air on hold, over 60% of callers hang-up in less than 40 seconds. Lost calls mean lost opportunity!
Now that you have the phone covered, what does your brand sound like inside your store, showroom or restaurant? Numerous studies have shown a staggering 34% increase in time spent in retail establishments when background music was played, with a corresponding 38% increase in sales! And, the same the same effect has been observed in restaurants.
In fact, a University Of Strathclyde study found that customers spent 23% more money in a restaurant when the right music was played. Interestingly, most of the increase in spending came on the drinks bill (which grew by 51% on average), which is a high margin item in most restaurants.
A brand’s sonic identity can go a long way to address many of today’s top brand challenges. Ultimately it’s not about creating sound, it’s about creating powerful emotional impact that transforms brand experiences. The right sound will increase attribution and heighten emotional engagement, as well as improve your ROI.