We asked our CEO and Head Of Content Creation, Jamie Aplin, how to write a successful advertising jingle. What does the process looks like when writing and recording a new jingle? What comes first – the melody, instrumentation or lyrics?
Jamie: It’s always the ‘sell-line’ – also known as the branding statement. That’s the “I’m Lovin’ It” (McDonalds) or “I’m A Big Kid Now” (Huggies), etc. Once you’ve settled on a branding statement, you then need to translate it into a singable format – which is your melody. These two components together ARE your jingle – and it’s crucial that you get them right. Use a complicated ‘sell-line’ or something that’s not easily retained and you’ve missed your mark. Same goes for melody. If it’s not catchy or doesn’t have a ‘hook’ – it won’t stick in the listener’s brain.
Once you have those nailed down, then you work on chord arrangement, instrumentation and full-on production. It is fairly straight forward from that point on. The trick is convincing the client that it’s not always in their best interest to sing their company name. For example, if the company is named “Anchor Bay Laser Vision & Eye Correction Center” – you probably shouldn’t be trying to put that into a singable format (laughs) – although it’s been done many times before. Instead, try to convince the client that it’ll be far more effective to build a campaign around a ‘generic’ branding statement such as “You’re Going To Love What You See”. This not only keeps their jingle memorable – but it reaches the audience far more than any business name ever could. It makes it all about the listener – NOT necessarily the business. After all, it’s the listener we’re trying to reach, isn’t it? They’re the ones we’re trying to evoke a response from.
I believe by following a proven formula, that is how to write a successful advertising jingle. “Simple sell-line + Singable Melody + great production”