Mention of sound logos first appeared in Fast Company to my current knowledge — I found it via a surprisingly neglected Guy Kawasaki post on LinkedIn– but brands are already creating sound logos to compliment their visual logos, and I think this is something that will probably persist as long as there is a Web remaining (that is if the visitors from that visiting cigar-shaped rock don’t end all that). I’ll explain why this is probably good news for everyone, from brands to garage bands.
An extremely brief backstory of sound logos
Sound logos are NOT new. Never heard that little “Intel Inside” 4-note jingle? That, and all other jingles, were actually sound logos (and with all rights reserved to the parties thereto). The alt text tag was the first hint at what was to be a new and more inclusive Web. We see social media reshaping a lot of people’s ways of thinking on social inclusion, or at least their way of talking about it, but sound logos are part of the more substantial social inclusivity trend. That’s because a sound logo can be heard by the blind and others who can’t easily process visual cues.
Why sound logos will catch onWhat this means for your brand: more brand fans who are either on social media or could become customers, regardless of whether it’s a B2B or B2C brand, an artist, a photography shop, or pretty much whatever. The proof of concept is all around you. Wikipedia, that final last word and bastion of ultimate truth (I kid) is also a social force of sorts and has adopted a sound logo just to show you their serious, despite what all the philosophers, physicists and historians on Facebook are snidely saying.
What are likely use cases for sound logos?There are lots of ways sound logos will likely be used:
- Radio ads
- A new genre of YouTube ads
- Mobile geofencing
- Website intro (and sound you hear when you click the logo)
- Office lobby entrance sound
- Schema structured data
- Spotify ads (it’s more radio show than video show, after all)
- Billboards (I don’t expect this one to work out)
- (Virtual?) office Christmas party drinking game cues