Decoupling Music Procurement (Part 2)

Yesterday Dominic Caisley, CEO and co-founder, Big Sync Music, wrote about his participation at ProcureCon Marketing recently explaining: How Our Unique Model Consolidates The Music Licensing, Creation And Strategy Of Global Companies Through One Unified Hub. He continues here: 

Next we examined:

The importance of transparency throughout the supply chain

The old model of music buying is both complex and opaque.  Traditionally it is procured by creative agencies, who will either execute internally or outsource to one of the hundreds of independent music supervisors in the market. Music is often left until the end of the production process and the music budget tends to be at the mercy of overspend in other areas and is whatever’s left over from the production budget. Music is usually just one line on a cost sheet often with no explanation, validation or breakdown.  The truth is, brands don’t always know how much they are spending on music, who is doing the buying and how.  This can lead to confusion and distrust.

The new music procurement model consolidates all licensing through one source, creating stability and consistency, shedding light on the previously murky process by offering complete visibility of the entire music supply chain. In addition, the new model provides more ownership and control of not only the selection process but of the music itself. Brands are now encouraged to become rights owners which helps keep control of a prized music asset, prevents additional fees for future use and can even provide a new revenue stream.

And finally we asked:

How does the new model ensure creative excellence?  

Whilst we’d love to take all the credit, the simple answer is collaboration. We knew that brands were frustrated and felt they were not part of the music creative process. In some cases, the brand felt pressured and often forced into using and paying for a track because it was the only option on the table so close to the air date. When it came to commissioning composers to write a track to picture, often there was no ‘pitch’ process and a composer was selected for ‘non-musical’ reasons. All of the above led to a compromise on the quality of the music.

Big Sync takes into consideration four key influences:

  1. The creative brief – it’s vital that we understand the creative team’s vision so the music acts as a narrative to what’s happening on screen. Music can create a mood or emotion, evoke a memory of a person, time or place, and can connect with a broad or niche audience.
  2. Portraying the brand’s personality – the best person to describe the brand’s characteristics is the brand themselves and the music must convey those qualities.
  3. Connecting with the target market – profiling the audience to better understand their music preferences demographically and geographically.
  4. The music needs – many factors can shape the final route to market and music brief from budgetary restrictions, broadcast platforms and territories, start dates, number and length of scripts and long-term/360 brand activities. It’s vital that music is approached from a strategic perspective rather than just tactical

In Millward Brown’s 'BRANDsense' study (2010), 42% consumers identified ‘sound’ as an important sensory component in communications and product experience, which was only a little less than ‘sight’ at 58%.  Jorgen Bartsch, our Unilever partner, explained to the audience that despite the two senses being rated so highly, most brands’ focus and budget is usually spent servicing the visual identity and very little on what the brand should sound like. Unilever, recognising the importance of music in its advertising, wanted to tackle that imbalance and improve their use of music - globally.

Bartsch revealed that in the past three years, Unilever and Big Sync have collaborated on over 3,000 projects for more than 100 brands worldwide with savings to Unilever of more than 30% and dozens of successful, award-winning campaigns under their belt.  Over this period, particular attention was paid to creating a Unilever Way of Working that led to a consistent music process and helped brands get better music solutions for the same or less spend. Moreover, music was now elevated up the creative timeline and considered a vital and strategic conversation that included all stakeholders.

Bartsch told our audience how decoupling music procurement can provide brands with visibility and inclusion, value add and cost save, which in turn will ensure creative excellence and meeting shared objectives. He finished the session by stressing the importance of building a relationship that is based on trust.

 

 

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