Sonic and Multi-Sensorial Branding

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Over at FUSE 2013 , Scott Power, Senior Brand Strategist for Kaiser Permanente, discussed sonic branding vis-à-vis KP’s work with Audiobrain.

Power pointed out how sound is being used as a way to reinforce, not only the Kaiser Permanente brand, but their services, thus helping people get healthier.

Sonic branding is hardly new, yet this powerful method is underused.

Many people think of a brand as represented by a visual trademark- a company saying: “This is us and what we represent.” However, with regards to audio branding companies say, “This is what we are offering, and this is what we want it to sound like, and how we want it to impact your senses.” But, it doesn’t need to stop there!

Walk into a McDonald’s. It has a certain smell. Order a burger. Nothing smells like a McDonald’s burger. Those smells are all part of the brand. What about the colors? The feel of the cups? The taste? The sounds that you hear when you wait in line? Leave McDonald’s and imagine what it would be like if every car company had its own distinctive ‘new car’ smell. What if each doctor’s office had its own smell that helped patients be more calm?

The brand is more than a logo, trademark or tagline. The brand is tied intimately to the experience of a product or service. It speaks through the languages of touch, sight, taste, sound and smell. It’s creates the greatest impact when, not only does it speak for the company and its offerings, but you and I actually understand the language and it resonates with what we expect the brand to be saying. There needs to be consistency, or paraphrasing Sartre: pink cake needs to taste pink!

The exciting part of this, is that Audio branding is only the beginning…

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Michael Plishka
Michael Plishka is the President and Founder of ZenStorming Solutions, LLC an innovation design consultancy. He believes in co-design methodologies, sharing design thinking essentials - empowering people and companies to make a difference with their products and services.

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