One Heck of a Flavour is the newest, flavour-iest sonic identity in the UK.
Here’s how we did it.
We spoke to The Drum to dissect the why and how of the new sonic.
How the Heck do you create an effective sonic identity?
Words by Jen Faull from The Drum as part of their audio deep dive 2022.
Armed with this data, food brand Heck recently decided it was time to create its own sonic brand. The company is famed for its chicken sausages, but increasingly it has been diversifying its product line and needed something that would unite its brands.
“When people think of any Heck product, we want them to hear the sound.”Jack Tate, Marketing Manager at Heck
“We’re always looking for new ways to speak with our customers,” says marketing director Jack Tate, who adds that “Just Eat, Netflix and Mastercard show how powerful a little bit of sound is and how it can change how you feel about a brand“.
The company worked with DLMDD, which initially treated the brief like any other piece of brand identity work – researching the company, talking to staff about its values, understanding the consumer point of view. From an on-paper summary of what Heck is, the keywords ‘iconic‘, ‘quirky‘, ‘energetic‘, ‘happy‘ and ‘genuine‘ emerged – each of which the brand then tasked musicians to create a ‘sound’ for.
That then went through testing with sound research platform Ignite, which compared these sounds with thousands of others in a database to ensure they align with those brand cornerstones.
Arguably, there’s a bit of the ’cheese’ factor in the end result – a chirpy tune, dubbed One Heck of a Flavor, that comes complete with a video of staff dancing in its factories. But Erin McCullough, the agency’s brand music consultant, says that is entirely intentional and that it wanted something that would instantly stick in people’s minds. “Heck is a super fun, vibrant, disruptive brand in a traditional market, so having a song that’s a bit cheesy and references the product is fun. You’d rather have something that’s in someone’s head than not.”
For McCullough, the sonic logos that work best ”are a bit irritating”. She says: ”It’s an earworm. You’ll be able to recall it in five years. There’s a time for a classic sonic identity and then there’s a time for something fun and completely crazy.”
Multiple assets have been created to be used across different platforms and brand touchpoints, from a two-minute jingle that can be used in adverts and call center music to a five-second audio cue designed for smart speakers, like Google Echo and Amazon’s Alexa, and streaming platforms such as Spotify.
“This was built with dexterity in mind, it has been built to last. It’s like a visual logo that people will see again and again to create a connection with the brand. We want it to last 15 or 20 years.”Erin McCullough, Brand Music Consultant @ DLMDD
Tate says that, in time, he wants the sonic logo to be just as recognizable as that logo on its packs and knows it will need to spend significant media budget to get there. “We’re in it for the long haul,“ he says.
Defining the metrics to measure how effective all this is in shifting the dial for Heck’s brand awareness and perception long term is still a work in progress, but for now, for Tate, it’s about “awareness, conversion and loyalty.”
“That’s what we want. When people think of any Heck product, we want them to hear the sound.”