At the start of October I present to an audience at Abbey Road Studios, made famous by the Beatles, on behalf of the RAB, Radio Advertising Bureau.

Radio Advertising Bureau is the organisation that represents commercial radio stations in the UK. They seek to persuade advertisers of the value of radio advertising through publishing research. One way of doing this is to show that music can be a strategic brand building tool; not just an afterthought in the creative process. They commissioned PUSH Research to do a ground breaking project to understand the emotional world of music and sound – a core part of which was semiotics.

PUSH Research http://www.push-london.com developed an approach using several methodologies, including expert interviews, neuro-metrics and semiotics. The findings are exciting and create a new frame work for helping planners and brand owners feel more comfortable in thinking their way through choosing appropriate music for brand communications. The headline findings are:

  • agencies and advertisers still lack confidence when choosing music for ads
  • yet ads using music consistently have higher creative scores and brand effects
  • a semiotics approach to musical meaning helps create a consistent framework

The project involved the painstaking task of picking 8 pieces of music (from Baroque to Bartok to Bad Brains!) which could be correlated with a list of 24 brand attributes – almost 200 specially curated pieces of music. Each piece was also hash tagged to show which of the other 23 attributes it also connoted.

The semiotic analysis also defined 6 parameters which justified why that piece of music was placed into that category and not another one (e.g. why is a piece of music seen as being confident and not reflective etc) – this formed the ‘intel inside’ for the navigator.

I look forward to sharing more about the project details, the semiotics meaning matrix and the online interactive Music Navigator tool once it is all in the public domain.

In the meantime, if you are interested in coming to the launch event at the famous Abbey Road Studios then let me know ASAP on:


And I’ll see if I can get you on the guest list for the event.

It should be a fun and engaging session.

I’m sure they’ll be no ‘chilled out entertainers’ a la David Brent!

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