The role of songs in advertising

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Jake
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Postby Jake » Fri Jan 09, 2009 11:57 pm

D. Phillips wrote:The point of advertising is to cut through to the consumer--get their attention.

I think unknown indie rock rarely does that. And even when a new song stands out, the brand never (for me anyway) sticks. Maybe there's some subconscious thing going on in my head that considers Acura (or whatever) hip or something because I heard a cool new song in their ad... But I doubt it.

I love the Kings of Convenience song "Toxic Girl" that was used in some ad with kids on a bus a few years ago, but I have absolutely no idea what it was advertising.

I know that "Pink Moon" was VW, and I first heard Badly Drawn Boy in a Gap ad, so maybe I'm full of shit. But those are the exceptions.

There have been a ton of times I've googled songs from ads, downloaded them, and then IMMEDIATELY forgot who the advertiser was. "I Adore You" by some unknown myspacer might be the latest example of that. Great song, no idea what the ad was anymore. Shit, I can't even remember the artist's name -- I'd have to look it up in my iTunes...

MF
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Postby MF » Sat Jan 10, 2009 1:49 am

My wife sought out that "sweater" song that was in some advert and downloaded it from iTunes. I don't know the artist or what company she licensed the song to, but I can still sing the rather vanilla track, "If you are chilly, here take my sweater..."

Yo La Tengo had a funny story about very nearly writing a song for a commercial, mobile phones I think.

So much of advertising just isn't aimed at my demographic that my take on all this just might be moot.

MF
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Postby MF » Sat Jan 10, 2009 1:52 am

And here's that story from Yo La Tengo...

Yo La Tengo Sellout: Part 1

D. Phillips
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Postby D. Phillips » Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:05 am

Some of you guys are putting way too much weight on the song and the fact that it got your attention but then you forgot what the ad was promoting. Music us just one element of the ad. It's like saying you loved the soundtrack to that kovie that Ellen page was in with the funny name...what was it...Judo or something? I'm not saying a well placed indie rock song will sell shoes. I am saying it's one piece of an overall package that makes up a commercial. Also improtant: Imagery, copy, acting, and a decent product or service people might be interested in buying.

jaimoe0
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Postby jaimoe0 » Sun Jan 11, 2009 11:01 pm

D. Phillips wrote:Some of you guys are putting way too much weight on the song and the fact that it got your attention but then you forgot what the ad was promoting. Music us just one element of the ad. It's like saying you loved the soundtrack to that kovie that Ellen page was in with the funny name...what was it...Judo or something? I'm not saying a well placed indie rock song will sell shoes. I am saying it's one piece of an overall package that makes up a commercial. Also improtant: Imagery, copy, acting, and a decent product or service people might be interested in buying.


Off topic, but that's a whole bunch of typos, D. What are you? Drubnk?

D. Phillips
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Postby D. Phillips » Sun Jan 11, 2009 11:35 pm

jaimoe0 wrote:
Off topic, but that's a whole bunch of typos, D. What are you? Drubnk?


*hiccup

Mixmaster Shecky
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Postby Mixmaster Shecky » Mon Jan 12, 2009 3:00 am

Jake wrote:Maybe there's some subconscious thing going on in my head that considers Acura (or whatever) hip or something because I heard a cool new song in their ad... But I doubt it.


Ah, don't kid yourself-companies wouldn't pay ad guys big bucks if their campaigns didn't work.

Advertising & branding is a multi-billion dollar industry, devoted to convincing schlubs like us to buy Accuras, iPhones and Whoppers. And if, for example, Weezer sells to your target market, then you'll eventually hear 'Why Bother' as the soundtrack to a Prudential ad.

That's not a bad idea, actually: you show a bunch of hipster thirtysomethings making foolish decisions while looping the main chorus of 'Why Bother' in the background. Prudential gets a sexier image, Weezer gets paid: everyone wins!

Little Timmy
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Postby Little Timmy » Mon Jan 12, 2009 4:42 pm

Wasn't it last year that NASDAQ ran a commercial with Of Montreal's "Every Day Feels Like Sunday" as the soundtrack?

Everyday feels like Sunday baby everyday feels so good
Everyday feels like Sunday baby everyday feels so good
I'm further and further away from the fall everyday


Further and further away from the fall? That's like, prescient.

steve-o
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Postby steve-o » Wed Jan 21, 2009 1:22 pm

Mixmaster Shecky wrote:Ah, don't kid yourself-companies wouldn't pay ad guys big bucks if their campaigns didn't work.


I don't know, if I hear a song on a commercial that is good enough for me to seek out/download, I usually intentionally try not to associate it with the commercial- like I don't need to be reminded everytime I hear The The's "This Is The Day" that I'm so old and out of touch that I have to hear about good music from a fucking M&M's commercial.

MF
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Postby MF » Sat Jan 24, 2009 10:48 pm

Ah, don't kid yourself-companies wouldn't pay ad guys big bucks if their campaigns didn't work. Advertising & branding is a multi-billion dollar industry, devoted to convincing schlubs like us to buy Accuras, iPhones and Whoppers. And if, for example, Weezer sells to your target market, then you'll eventually hear 'Why Bother' as the soundtrack to a Prudential ad.


I've worked in and around advertising for a long-time and I wouldn't put a lot of stock in the guys with the cultivated stubble and black frame glasses.

Here's more on misguided advertising dollars: http://www.ethanzuckerman.com/blog/2009 ... mance-age/


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