The power of music in advertising: Delta Airlines utilizes great music to make a highly engaging spot

Engaging drama, brand beauty shots, a clear and compelling benefit, and heart/mind opening messages can all contribute to making an ad that resonates with consumers, elicits high brand recall, and drives purchase intent.  However, given the increased clutter across every communication platform, and the consumer’s ability to more easily skip over ads, creating a message that grabs your attention, generates immediate engagement, and holds it throughout can be highly challenging for advertisers…even elusive.

But Delta Airlines has done just that. In their recent, minute-long ad targeting the business traveler, Delta offers eye-catching vignettes from all over the world, and even convincingly portrays the moment of relaxation that happens when you finally sit down on the plane (granted, it’s business class).  However, it’s the music that wins – drawing you in immediately.  See for yourself here.

I saw the ad for the first time during halftime of a sporting event.  While halftime TV advertising usually serves as background noise, when this spot came on, it grabbed my full attention and held it for the entire 60 seconds. From the moment The Free Design’s Love You starts playing, at the immediate outset of the spot, you’re captivated.  While I think the spot would still be good with other music, it’s Wieden+Kennedy’s track choice that ultimately makes the ad work.

Advertisers should never underestimate the power of music in their spots.  It’s not that it necessarily makes or breaks the communication, it’s just that the right music can act as an engagement and like ability multiplier.  With that said, music can also be subjective and polarizing, which can make identifying the right music challenging.  Fortunately, Delta hit the right…dare I say…note this time.


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