Sonic logos: can sound influence willingness to pay?

Sonic logos: can sound influence willingness to pay? Purpose – Auditory branding is the association of a non‐verbal, auditory identity for a brand. Sonic logos, or “sogos,” are a key element of sonic branding. This paper seeks to examine the systematic influence of an objective property, the number of tones in a sogo, on consumers' willingness‐to‐pay for the associated brand. Design/methodology/approach – A laboratory experiment was conducted to test hypotheses. Findings – Findings suggest that the number of tones in a sogo systematically influences willingness‐to‐pay in a non‐linear manner. Sogos with very few (three) tones or numerous (nine) tones are perceived to be less valuable than sogos with a moderate number (six) tones. This influence is mediated by the fluency with which the sogos are processed. Research limitations/implications – Although this study examines only one objective property of a sogo, it lays the theoretical foundation for a new research stream by connecting the processing fluency literature and logo literature to provide objective design guidelines for auditory branding elements. Future research could address the influence of other objective properties such as the contour (ascending/descending) of a sogo. Practical implications – Although sogos are important and costly branding devices, their creation depends on intuition rather than objective parameters. Findings demonstrate that number of tones in a sogo systematically influences willingness‐to‐pay for the associated brand – a direct economic practical implication. Originality/value – Despite its undeniably central role, sonic branding is a sparsely researched area. This paper demonstrates a strategic outcome for a brand leveraging sound as information. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Product & Brand Management Emerald Publishing

Sonic logos: can sound influence willingness to pay?

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1061-0421
D.O.I.
10.1108/10610421211246685
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – Auditory branding is the association of a non‐verbal, auditory identity for a brand. Sonic logos, or “sogos,” are a key element of sonic branding. This paper seeks to examine the systematic influence of an objective property, the number of tones in a sogo, on consumers' willingness‐to‐pay for the associated brand. Design/methodology/approach – A laboratory experiment was conducted to test hypotheses. Findings – Findings suggest that the number of tones in a sogo systematically influences willingness‐to‐pay in a non‐linear manner. Sogos with very few (three) tones or numerous (nine) tones are perceived to be less valuable than sogos with a moderate number (six) tones. This influence is mediated by the fluency with which the sogos are processed. Research limitations/implications – Although this study examines only one objective property of a sogo, it lays the theoretical foundation for a new research stream by connecting the processing fluency literature and logo literature to provide objective design guidelines for auditory branding elements. Future research could address the influence of other objective properties such as the contour (ascending/descending) of a sogo. Practical implications – Although sogos are important and costly branding devices, their creation depends on intuition rather than objective parameters. Findings demonstrate that number of tones in a sogo systematically influences willingness‐to‐pay for the associated brand – a direct economic practical implication. Originality/value – Despite its undeniably central role, sonic branding is a sparsely researched area. This paper demonstrates a strategic outcome for a brand leveraging sound as information.

Journal

Journal of Product & Brand ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 13, 2012

Keywords: Sonic branding; Sogos; Processing fluency; Brands; Logos; Music; Consumers

References

  • Music and consumers
    Kellaris, J.J.
  • Creating meaningful brands: the relationship between brand name and brand mark
    Klink, R.R.
  • Phonetic symbolism and brand name preference
    Lowrey, T.M.; Shrum, L.J.
  • The effect of music on atmosphere and purchase intentions in a cafeteria
    North, A.C.; Hargreaves, D.J.
  • Always leave home without it: a further investigation of the credit‐card effect on willingness to pay
    Prelec, D.; Simester, D.

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