Over the decades, brands have made good progress towards using music as one of the tools in their toolboxes to connect with consumers. But are we really optimizing for music in a way that the return we get for the money and time we spend on music is worthwhile?
I’m a sucker for good value, and so naturally I look a lot at if the music brands are putting in their marketing communications is actually giving them a good return on their investment. Those projects/brands who I think miss the mark on really optimizing music as an asset seem to have a few things in common. In this article, I talk about what I consider the one thing that would make the most difference for a brand, right now.
But first: What do I mean by “get more value out of music?”
What am I getting at by saying, “use music as a strategic tool”, “optimize for music” or “get more value” out of music? A few examples:
- Increase marketing effectiveness (better ROI)
- Save money and time
- Be a more legit contender in the category
- Differentiate from competition
We’ll expand on this in a future article, but for now: The key here is that, when we talk about music optimization, we’re talking about getting more value for the money, time and energy you spend. Music as an ASSET that helps you achieve your business goals, more efficiently and effectively.
What might be keeping your brand from getting the most out of music?
The number one reason music isn’t optimized in brand communications is because there’s no one entity overseeing music from start to finish.
To use music in a way that’s actually helping you to connect more deeply with your people and to sell more product, it requires music touching all of these areas:
- Business Objectives
- Brand Strategy
You might notice that these are all areas handled by different people in different departments and even in different organizations. You may see that, as it pertains to music, that some of these areas are handled by one person or team and some of them are handled by a completely different team. It’s not so much about having one person DO all the work (trust me, it’s a lot of work). What’s important is having one person responsible for knowing the priorities of each area and being able to adjust the levers such that we find an optimal solution amongst all the priorities and objectives – AS they relate to the consumer.
Why does this matter?
If there is not one person who is clued into all these departments and considering their priorities in the selection and licensing of music, one or both of these things are likely happening:
- You’re spending (probably A LOT of) money and time on something without knowing if it’s of value (ROI).
- You’re diluting or even hurting your brand in the eyes of consumers.
Best case scenario is that the intuitions of the various people making decisions on what ends up getting to air are collectively correct and the music is helping the brand at an appropriate ratio of resources spent to return.
Where to start? It’s easy.
Start by having ONE ENTITY, ideally someone who knows about all the possibilities for music licensing and with a line of communication to the brand organization itself, clued into all these areas as they pertain to music selection and licensing. They may start connecting the dots between what’s important to the business and what the actual impact is once music hits the ears of consumers. You may just start seeing other creative elements to optimize as well.