Now that we’ve got a lot of the visual side of branding out the way a few mentions to those other senses, starting with sound.
We are all familiar with sounds Idents. They are essentially the heard version of a logo. Short punchy and hopefully memorable. The difficulty with writing any post about sound is you can’t hear what I’m writing but hopefully if I type “mmm Danum” you’ll know what I’m talking about. Coming up with a simple sound ident that can give some flavour of your company is no mean feat.
Longer than an Ident but shorter than a full blown song, its our old friend the jingle. Jingles in some respect are now considered a little old fashioned and cheesy but can still be used to good effect. The core of a good jingle is a peppy tune and easily remembered lyrics, usually with a very simple rhyme. Jingles should be simple and easy for anyone to sing and need to encapsulate your product or brand. If an Ident is the sound version of your logo, then a jingle would be the equivalent as the headline banner on your website.
Sometimes brands come up with their own songs or will re-purpose familiar songs for their own ends. a recent example would cleaning brand Flash, who repurposed Queen’s song for the film of the same name so it was less about space adventures and more about cleaning your space. With a long running series of adverts a song used in the background will quickly become associated with your brand. One that pops to my mind is Peter, Bjorn and John’s Young Folks which was used on Homebase for a number of years. (a quick google and I’m sure you’d soon recognise it) songs are useful in portraying emotions where visuals may not. Obviously songs have rights associated with them and so it’s always worth looking for copyright free and commercial music you can use for your brand.
Last but certainly not least, with video being so popular, using the same voice in your videos is another way in which to stamp the sort of company you are. Although celebrities are increasingly being used, there are many voiceover people you can get at much more reasonable rates on various freelance sites.
Sound is an often overlooked area of branding but as with visuals each and every little element all adds up to guide the viewer and inform them on the sort of company you are.