Why adland must sing the praises of music

Recognising its power, and how to utilise it fully, is crucial to the future of brands

You may not have liked it, but it would have been better if I had sung this intro rather than written it. That way, I would have stood a better chance of being eloquent and articulate and of moving you – even changing your mind state.

Luckily for all concerned, Global’s creative director, Jo McCrostie, does a great job explaining quite how music has the power to influence both mind and body in her piece that follows in this Music special. Together with Adam & Eve/DDB’s Les Binet, she also delves into the ability that advertisers now have to measure the way music affects us.

Richard Kirstein, the founder of Resilient Music, offers some practical tips on music clearance and learnings from a real-life scenario that had me shivering as much as an episode of Broadchurch. He also has a neat take on the observation that the devil has all the best tunes.

Looking back, 2014 was a very good year for Music Sales Creative. Its head of sync, Bree Winwood, takes us through the tracks of her year, which ranged from licensing from the company’s catalogue to compositions by its composers for brands such as Marks & Spencer and films including The Theory Of Everything.

And what of 2015? What is the future for the long-established resource of the UK ad industry – Mechanical-Copyright Protection Society-registered production music? Celebrating its tenth year in the business, Felt is in a good position to take a strategic view, but its creative director, Steve Spiro, and the managing director, Natalie Dickens, have also taken the temperature across the industry. The conclusion is that MCPS production music continues to thrive on providing high-speed and predictable costs but will need to keep apace of industry change.

One of the most significant ways in which the ad industry is changing is its approach to using music. It’s no longer just about unearthing that killer soundtrack for an ad, as Daniel M Jackson, the chief executive of Cord Worldwide, points out. The art of music planning is on the rise, and that means taking brand objectives that you might find in any advertising brief – build awareness, create affinity, stop churn – and then looking to see how music can provide the answers. Jackson makes a compelling argument for music’s power to carry the heavy burden of brand-building. Great ads of the past had great soundtracks, he says. What of the iconic brands of the future?

I’ll leave the final word to him.

See the Music essays here

What if they say no?

The strategy of soundtracks

Choosing the right song can make a great ad, but developing a musical strategy can help build your brand

A thriving treasure trove

Although production music has become more popular, the sector faces new challenges in the digital age as it evolves

You can't turn your ears off, so listen up

We all know that music has the power to move us emotionally - but data now suggests it can be just as effective at influencing consumers' brand preferences

It was a very good year

From tying up with luxury brands to using old classics in ads to some special gigs, 2014 was a year to remember

A bridge worth crossing

There is no grey area in music clearance - get approval early and aim to build long-lasting relationships