04 Jul

When Music Met Advertising

By Nawaal Fakih

The unbreakable relationship between Advertising and Jingles has been one that’s been around since the inception of the industry. Every ad is combined with a light-hearted, catchy and fun jingle that brings out the best results of our efforts (to produce the ad). These catchy jingles have now become a part and parcel of our life. When we hear someone talk about ‘Nirma’ our minds automatically start playing ‘Washing powder Nirma, washing powder Nirma’. Not only lyrical jingles but also instrumental jingles have made equal impact. Airtel being one of the big game changers, with their jingle that we’ve heard not only on TV but also as the average person’s mobile ringtone.

While jingles will forever be an iconic addition to advertising, composed music and music hits of all time are making entry into the industry. Music is addictive and groovy, it attracts. The attractive quality of music is what’s drawing advertisers to take this approach. Bringing glamour to advertising means creating hype. Just like celebrities as brand ambassadors and endorsers have proved to be a winning formula, bringing hit songs to advertising has grabbed the attention of a lot of brands.

Let’s take this back to the 1980’s, the era of the world wide music sensation ‘The Beatles’. When Nike, the famous sports brand, saw ladies drooling over the then hot sensation boy band, it took up the challenge to create an ad by licensing and using one of the Beatle’s hit songs called ‘Revolution’. For an 80’s ad to bring ‘The Beatles’ in the game was a huge deal and it was the perfect idea to draw mass viewership for their ads. While Nike made the right move, it also became a medium for people to get introduced to the song and hence gain even more popularity.

It’s a well known fact that music indeed engages and attracts a mass audience. Advertisers now are not only willing to license music from well known artists, but are also offering them to get on board and create songs made from scratch specifically for their advertisements.

Just like what happens when you get Chris Brown to re-write his famous song ‘Forever’ and turn it into a jingle sung by Chris Brown himself? Well, Wringley’s Doublemint got the perfect collaboration in their bag. The advertisement not only made use of his song but also got Chris Brown to feature and perform in the ad.
Jockey, the worldwide innerwear brand that targets the youth, does it best with adding rock and roll elements to attract its potential customers. Modern visuals with classic rock music is a solid combination for the youth. Jockey chose to use ‘I love rock and roll’ by ‘Joan Jett’ for their US based audience. The ad campaign was such a hit that it was also aired for the Indian market.
Another advertisement by Jockey was targeted towards dancers and athletes where Jockey chose ‘Feeling Good’ by ‘Nina Simone’ and visualised the comfort of their product while being in action.
Recently, Vivo’s ad that featured Aamir Khan as the ambassador also featured the EDM song 'Albatraoz' by AronChupa. This is an example that all kinds of songs are being taken up by brands and advertisers. Since the song is groovy and widely heard it gained more traction.
Apart from just taking hits and successful songs, the Indian market has proved that shorter versions of songs are also equally effective and can bring out the desired result. Take Blackberry for example, to divert the audience’s perception from ‘Blackberry mobiles are for the ones in business’ to ‘Blackberry is essentially for everyone’, all they did was collaborate with Vodafone, India’s top network provider and come up with one of the catchiest songs of 2010 ‘The Blackberry Boys’. It was creative, funny and everything that was needed to reach their target audience.
And how can we forget Hutch’s ‘You and I in this beautiful world’? It melted our hearts and kept us going back to have a listen again and again. You bring a kid and a dog together in an ad with a song like that and it’s as good as a guaranteed success.
While all these attempts to incorporate music into advertisements have been successful, it’s not only restricted to advertising but also world events for that matter. One of the greatest examples being the FIFA World Cup. How many times have we screamed ‘Just like the waving flag’ at the top of our lungs? No matter the occasion, the song is a classic and one that brings people together. How many times have we tried belly dancing like Shakira to ‘Waka Waka’? Needless to say, we have always failed at it but that doesn’t stop us. These song associations are just like any other marketing gimmick that bring people to watch the sport. Glamourize anything and almost anyone gets hooked to it.
One thing that is certain is that choosing the correct songs for advertisements and marketing gimmicks will never go wrong because the art form is not only practiced widely but also heard by mass population. It is everything that the audience is on the lookout for and will make them relate to your brand even more.