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Beats & Brands: The Supervisors Take on Sonic Branding

Trends and Insight 100 Add to collection

Goody Bag speaks to The Supervisors' Lotten Karlsson and Patrik Berggren to find out how brands should approach developing their sonic brand

Beats & Brands: The Supervisors Take on Sonic Branding

With the rise of audio and music based social media channels, brands are starting to ask themselves, ‘how do we sound’? And rightfully so, the research has been done and the benefits of sonic branding are as clear and powerful as a Phil Collins drum solo.

A strong audio identity can not only help brands stand out from the pack, it can lift brand recall and flesh out their overall personality.

Goody Bag spoke to Lotten Karlsson and Patrik Berggren, founders of the Stockholm-based music agency The Supervisors, to find out how brands should approach developing their sonic brand.


Q> How important is an audio identity for brands these days?

The Supervisors> Incredibly. We’ve seen a huge shift of brands coming to understand the large impact that a visual identity combined with an audio one can have on their audience. As consumers, knowing how they sound helps make the brand so clear. You get a deeper emotional feeling for a brand.


Q> For those who haven’t begun the journey, how does the process of developing an audio identity look?

The Supervisors> It starts with their brand values. Every brand has a clear view or what they stand for, the culture, what they want the customers to see or feel. The question is then, ‘what emotion do we want people to feel?’

With a clear brief, we then begin translating the brand's values and goals into notes.

As a music supervisor, Patrick then makes sure those notes are readable for the composers to create. The clearer they understand the picture musically, the easier the process is.

Working with brands and in-house agencies is a joy. They are as passionate about their brands as we are with music and that combination works perfectly.


Q> What are the main ways in which brands use their audio identity?

The Supervisors> The brands we work with use the music for everything from scoring commercials to podcast and even the in-store retail experience. And the channels of use are growing each day and will continue to do so. Sometimes brands don’t understand the full extent of how they can use music so we guide them through that process. Our knowledge, as well as business model really highlight the full potential an audio identity.


Q> Tell me about your model?

The Supervisors> We sell the rights to the music straight to the brand and the upside for them to own the music is huge. They can see it as an investment into how they sound and know that they only pay once.

They don’t pay year two, year three, year four or for increasing regions or channels. That gives brands a huge opportunity to focus on how they use it, not if they are allowed to.

There's obviously a huge benefit for agencies as well. For them to have music and audio components without restriction means they can treat music with the same level of creative curiosity and attention that they do with print, film or digital.

Up until now music has been treated as an after thought but with this model it means that brands and agencies can explore the creative possibilities & uses freely.


Q> Coming from Sweden, a country that has over the years produced some of the world’s top artists and producers, I’m assuming there is no shortage of talent.

The Supervisors> That’s right. We work with a hand picked selection of top level producers, each focusing on their particular genre. Quite a few music supervisors these days work with a smaller pool of generalists, but not us. When we do jazz we go to a jazz specialist. It’s a professional collaboration and not something to be risked. How a brand sounds is too important an issue for us to left in hands of anyone other than a specialist.

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Genres: Music & Sound Design

Goody Bag, Mon, 10 May 2021 14:20:00 GMT