Sound Advice

Sound Advice

We are all familiar with visual brand images, but have you ever considered audio brands as part of your image? Every brand has a visual image including their logo and color palette. These elements are often developed with a special consideration given to establishing an icon. Icons are a form of sensory trigger that immediately reminds the customer of a brand the moment they are exposed to it.

Color icons are UPS’s brown, ING Direct’s orange and Mac’s golden arches. Audio branding is a sound. Hearing it immediately makes you think of the brand exactly the same way a visual brand works. Great audio brands include Harley’s motorcycle sound, Intel’s notes, and the Hockey Night in Canada theme.

You don’t have to be a multi-national to take advantage of sound. Putting a few catchy guitar licks at the front end of any presentations you do and marry that with your web presence and you can start to familiarize your audience with a sound icon. With the advent of mobile marketing, a sound icon would be a very powerful introduction. Myself, I’m putting mine to use in a series of podcasts.

Join the growing list of savvy marketing and include the senses as triggers to successful marketing.


  1. That is very good advice, Ed. I think the effectiveness of audio branding is under-estimated. Intel’s notes in particular is a good example of how people immediately associate that sound with their brand.

  2. great post brother, thank you for reminding me of how important sound for successful marketing and this is almost not noticed by most people. if visual branding and sound branding have been familiar in the minds of people so this will be very great for marketing strategy. thanks for your advice Ed…

  3. Thanks Paul. I happen to think Intel did the best job ever with Audio Branding. As much as I immediately think Intel, whenever I hear those notes. Powerful stuff.

    Thanks for commenting by the way.


  4. Interesting article about sound branding. I agree that colours and audio have a similar effect for brand recognition. We also write about audio branding, you can see some of our article on this topic on our blog. Thanks for writing.

  5. It works – and I hate it.
    Just think of the german telekom (T-Mobile) which has a five tone melody in every commercial they are running. I hear it everyday a few times.
    Also when flying, the first thing upon arrival is that people switch on their mobile phones. When logged into the network some phones acknowledge this with a tone signal – guess what T-Mobile uses. The famous five tones are all over the plane.

    But as already said – it works

  6. Ha! That’s funny Blumenversand. Your comment is a great testament to the effectiveness of the technique – but it seems that it is driving you to drink.

    Have a great week.


  7. Thanks Tom. I will definitely be dropping by your blog to hear you’re opinion on the subject, (It’s what i do.)

  8. Abumaryan, audio branding is one more differentiator. It resonates on an entirely sub-conscience level. Let’s say it’s like a dog whistle for branding 🙂

  9. This is an excellent idea, certinaly thinking outside the box. Perhaps even a small intro sound when visiting your business’s site (although only small and made sure only to play once to prevent any annoyance!)

  10. I like this idea – it can be incorporated onto all your video, slideshows, and podcasts – ringtone to give your clients. Finding the time to search for a track that reflects your brand – maybe I could get my kids to do the search/ composing.

  11. Ringtones, great idea Arnold! Over time this works. Thank you for your opinion.

  12. Website use is a great example, “Best Self Tan”, and I agree that a non-looping version is the answer. It is very irritating on some sites when it goes on and on.

  13. Whenever we see video clip an audio is play a big role.without an audio sound visual images is looking like a useless and not interesting.and vice, both are necessary and must.

  14. I agree SEO. Video without audio is pretty useless. Unless of course unless it is designed that way. I’ve seen some video that used silence to their advantage. They had text on the screen that essentially forces you to pay more attention and read every word. It was very effective.

  15. Debbie Irwin says

    As Ed mentioned, there is audio branding that includes voice. I think there’s value in hearing a consistent message/sound through a variety of media with one voice. (Phone Messaging, TV/Website welcome message/product demos, etc.)

    That’s what I do as a voice over artist.

    Does anyone have any statistics on the benefit of adding audio to a website/video/power point presentation/etc.?