• Transform magazine
  • April 26, 2019

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Mastercard launches its own sonic brand

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Brand development, or the promise to deliver a quality product over time to the consumer, is the cornerstone of any business. A select few corporations, such as Apple, McDonalds and Nike have developed their brand to such a great extent it is instantaneously recognisable by most people without any word association. Mastercard joined that elite tier last month when it decided to use only a symbol as its brand, removing the company name from all official merchandise and media.

The brand has now decided to expand its resumé and introduce sonic brand. The new melody it has chosen to represent the company will now be used uniformly across all Mastercard media and merchandise. According to chief marketing and communications officer Raja Rajamannar, “It is important that [Mastercard’s] sonic brand not only reinforces our presence, but also resonates seamlessly around the world.”

The audio brand is simple yet sanguine and can best be described as the sound heard when successfully powering on the Windows XP OS. Mastercard plans to make the audio brand omnipresent in stores, as it will play whenever a customer has successfully completed a transaction. Additionally, a richer, more sophisticated composition of the sonic brand will be played in future television, web, and radio advertisements, and will serve as an asset for musical scores, sound logos, ringtones and more. The audio brand will be tailored to fit locally popular styles and genres of music in towns and cities across the globe, which is intended to establish a personal touch that is still redolent of the sound’s worldwide recognition.

Mastercard debuted the sonic brand right before the 61st Grammy Awards, the most famous music awards show in the world. The company collaborated with Fred Segal, a California based fashion store, to deliver a launch event known as the Mastercard Sensory Lab. The event ran for the week immediately preceding the Grammys and featured the opportunity to buy exclusive clothing with a Mastercard credit card and hear the company’s new transaction melody for the first time. Mastercard also managed to secure music celebrities with California roots to promote the event, such as rapper Kyle and member of Linkin Park, Mike Shinoda.

It is yet to be determined if MasterCard’s new sonic brand will eventually ascend to the status of McDonald’s unmistakable jingle, but the company is clearly determined to reach that level.