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brandamp unveils major new study into music and brands

31 January, 2008

• Joint initiative between WPP and Universal Music
• Bands & Brands book draws on six-month research project

A significant new study examining the relationship between music, advertising, brands and consumers is published today in a book by brandamp, a joint venture between Universal Music and WPP.

Called Bands & Brands, how music communicates with people, the book marks the culmination of over six months’ in-depth research, involving musicologists, psychologists, music industry insiders, broadcasters, advertising agencies and hundreds of members of the public.

Headed up by Giulio Brunini, chief executive of brandamp and Hanna Chalmers, head of research at Universal Music, the Bands & Brands project provides a guide to the complex world of branded music content. The study is a comprehensive overview of music’s power as a communications medium and also examines how artists and brands can unite to create a profitable and mutually beneficial partnership.

The research also sheds light on consumer habits driving changes in the music industry, with extensive qualitative and quantitative research allied to case studies and expert interviews. Luminaries such as Dr Simon Frith, professor of music at Edinburgh University and chair of the Mercury Music Prize judges, and professor Sue Hallam, head of psychology at the University of London were joined by the likes of U2 manager Paul McGuinness; artist, composer and digital music pioneer Peter Gabriel; Channel 4 head of marketing (digital), Cameron Saunders; WPP creative director Robyn Putter; and Universal Music chairman Lucian Grainge.

Bands & Brands also examines real world partnerships between music and brands, including the recent ‘Comes with Music’ content deal struck between Nokia and Universal.

Research-based branding consultancy Sparkler, Entertainment Media Research and Millward Brown conducted and coordinated the research for the project.

Key research findings from the project are detailed overleaf.

Bands & Brands: key research findings:

• Music consumption has never been so widespread; it is now ubiquitous in modern society.

• Music is something most people love, that no one dislikes and that touches everyone throughout their lives.

• People’s senses, their brains and their bodies can all be penetrated and deeply effected by music. It can manipulate heartbeats and links our emotions with what our senses perceive.

• 61% agree that music makes them feel different physically.

• 85% agree that music can change their mood

• 88% agree that music reminds them of special places in their past

• Over 77 million downloads in 2007 – an increase from 52.5 million in 2006

• Easy access to music is a reaction to demand and does not in any way dilute the power of music in people’s lives. If anything, the option to have music with you at all times only strengthens the consumers’ relationship with music.

• Music is a ‘like’ or ‘love’ thing. Unlike any other form of popular culture or any other medium, people do not actively dislike music

• People would rather live without their computers, their mobile phones, their television and even sex than be without music for the rest of their lives.

• There are two types of music consumer: The Centrals and Peripherals.

• For the ‘Central’ music is an extremely engaging force, superseding any other media. They will take music with them in every space – in the car, on the bus, or at home. A Central’s music taste tells the story of their life over time.

• For ‘Peripheral’ consumers, music is less integral to their lives. They like a bit of everything and their music tastes can be based around an artist’s personality or the memories music evokes, rather than thinking or feeling something about the music itself.

• Whether Central or Peripheral, the emotional, mood-changing, memory-evoking power of music remains strong. Music was embedded in all of our respondent’s memories and will remain so.

• 59% of our total sample listens to music every single day.

• 80% of 16-24 year olds listen to music every single day and 41% of those listen for 1-2 hours daily (27% listen to music for 4 hours every day too!).

• 60% of 25-34 year olds listen to music for an hour a day with 39% of those choosing to listen before 9am.

• More Britons would prefer to be trapped in a lift with John Lennon than either Winston Churchill or Martin Luther King.

In addition to the Nokia-Universal partnership, the guide looks at other recent successful activity, including the Cadbury’s ‘Gorilla’ ad which helped lead Phil Collins’s ‘Coming In The Air Tonight’ to number 9 in the UK download chart, as well as helping Cadbury regain its position in the hearts of UK consumers. The Starbucks Hear Music record label, the 02 ‘Undiscovered’ talent contest, Coke’s tie up with iTunes and Apple’s U2 iPod also feature. 

To read a sample of the Bands & Brands report go here.

For more information, interviews or images, please contact:

Jaime Williams
T: +44 (0) 207 1585607

Acrobat Document Brandamp_PressRelease_Bands_Jan08_guidb3287c97733c.pdf

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