Time for a change in tune

I was quite surprised when I read this story in AdAge. It is all about how one song has been used in countless ads and the dynamics of it.  The piece was coming from the band’s perspective (who are rubbing their hands this, but looking at it from the brand’s perspective you have to wonder who is negotiating terms.

The problem with overexposure of a song is that the song loses impact and now that ads as as much audio as they are a visual experience then you are cutting out some of the effectiveness of your message.  So brands need to be careful and consider what rights they need to purchase to protect ‘their song’ from being used by competing companies (e.g. Samsung Tv Vs Sony Tv), competing industries (Tv Vs VOD) and contradicting industries (Save the Planet Vs SUVs).

The first few ads I remember where music played a real part was  for Levi’s and Apple (examples below).  The difference was they selected music that (a) supported the message and, (b) was exclusive.

Brands had the power then and bands wanted to be associated with specific brands, where as now the tables seem to have turned.  Bands have a lot more gravitas and brands want to be associated with them.

I guess this is just a sign of the times; where associations are the message rather than an element of it.


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