How does music help boost sales?

Posted 12.07.19

The vast majority of prospects buy based on emotion, not logic. They decide to buy because it “feels right,” then use logic to justify the decision to themselves. So the better you are at making an emotional connection between the prospect and whatever you’re selling, the easier you’ll find the sale.

In advertising, music works alongside copy and graphics towards leading the consumer to the purchase of a product or a service that they haven’t even tried yet. 

Creates an emotional response

One of the ways music affects mood is by stimulating the creation of certain brain chemicals such as dopamine and oxytocin.  Dopamine is the same brain chemical responsible for the feel-good satisfaction we get from eating chocolate, or the runner’s high and even love. Oxytocin, on the other hand, has been called the “trust molecule” as it enables bonding and relying upon others.

There are a number of specific musical features that are highly associated with particular emotions. Within the factors affecting emotional expression in music, the tempo is typically regarded as the most important, but a number of other factors, such as mode, loudness, and melody, also influence the emotional valence of the piece.

What’s so amazing about these factors is that each of them can create a whole gamma of emotions that can be perceived as positive or negative. For example, slow tempo can trigger either sadness or serenity; fast tempo anger or happiness. 

Makes your ad more memorable

Music can enhance an ad, but it is the lyrics in the music that can really make it stick in your customers’ mind. We’re not just talking about jingles like the Go Compare ads. 

A great example where lyrics are effectively used is “Dumb Ways to Die”  for the Metro Trains Melbourne:

The campaign was devised by the advertising agency McCann Melbourne and John Mescall. The executive creative director, said the aim of this campaign is to engage an audience that really doesn’t want to hear any kind of safety message, and we think Dumb Ways To Die will.” 

Along with the hilarious animation, the lyrics in this advert made it catchy and the positive message reinforces its success. 

Results and case study

Creates nostalgia

Notably, memories stimulated by music often come from specific times in our lives. Classic hits take us back to our teenage years and our twenties, much more so than songs of later years. Psychologists have called it the “reminiscence bump”. It occurs because a sense of identity develops during adolescence and early adulthood, everything is new and meaningful. Later, life becomes a bit of a blur.

The strongest influence lyrics can provoke in people’s mind is triggering emotions from memory. The reason lyrics often stick to our memory is that they can be related to strong emotions. Music can trigger these by itself but it’s with the help of words that we link a song to personal and specific emotional events, effectively making it a representation of our big highs and lows.

Get music high on your agenda

Music is a common phenomenon that crosses all borders of nationality, race, and culture.

Never again let music come last on your list when creating your content. Spend as much time on your tune as you did on your initial idea. It really could be the thing that seals the sale.

Matti Truppi is a Motion Graphics Designer at Wilderness Agency