Sound Is Sexy: Make Your Content Stand Out
Online content is being consumed more than ever, and on more devices than ever. The audio quality, however, is not always up to par with consumer expectations.
So what’s going on here?
Over the past decade or so, brands like Sonos, Beats by Dr. Dre, Google Home, and Amazon Alexa have launched impressively successful marketing campaigns to shift the stigma about buying audio products and have created a billion dollar industry. Not so long ago if you spent more than $25 on a pair of headphones you were considered an “audiophile” — AKA, a fucking nerd.
In 2017, Beats ads featured everyone from hit rapper Kendrick Lamar to star-basketball player LeBron James to model/ actress Cara Delevingne.
People will now drop several hundred dollars to get the cool look and a better listening experience.
Last year’s SONOS Playbase commercial campaign exemplifies how companies are sexifying sound design and audio. These ads diminish the original sound design of famous movie scenes. The result is a well-known epic visual completely deflated by the lack of audio to match. Cue the slow zoom out into the consumer’s living room where they add the full sound back in, revealing the Playbase product and a simplistic text making the viewer feel ridiculous for not owning one. A stroke of advertising genius considering the majority of people watch that commercial from their crappy Smart TV speakers.
Good audio products have become the norm and are in everyone’s hands. Even the free headphones that come with your iPhone sound half-decent. You may have previously been able to get away with poor audio mixes, cheap sound effects, clicky edits, and not-so-clean dialogue because poor speakers and headphones would mask those imperfections. For better or for worse, there are now fewer places to hide.
And just like how watching a low-definition TV feels like returning to the stone-age, with hi-fidelity audio products as the norm, bad audio is obvious and turns-away consumers.
Even so, audio quality is still an afterthought for many digital content creators, usually because of lack of budget and the fact there is no quality control for the internet. Unlike TV or radio, there aren’t strict audio standards that YouTubers or Facebookers need to adhere to (yet). I get hired more and more for online content that may not have been recorded well on set/location and needs some love in post production. After producers neglect proper recording technique, or encounter poor recording environments, they come to me to salvage what exists of their audio because they realize the obvious fact that, yes, how your content sounds is as important as how it looks.
And most importantly, post production audio doesn’t need to be expensive (ahem…Full English Post’s contact details below).
Moreover, audio engineers in this context do more than just edit audio. We add atmospheres, Foley, and have vast libraries of sound effects to make your audio sound real (or not, if that’s what the project calls for). More often than not, what is real doesn’t sound real. Or it’s not dramatic enough. Most Hollywood movies re-record their dialogue after the fact — and nearly every sound effect is replaced or added in the post-production process.
Make sure your beautiful visual content isn’t restricted by poor audio. Record your audio well, and allocate some of your budget toward professionally editing and mixing it. Audio quality is an extremely important part of content production and it’s being closely judged by a growing audience.
Sound has become sexy. People are starting to know the difference between good and great… keep ahead of the curve.
If you’d like professional audio for your content, don’t hesitate to email or call for a free consultation. Whether it’s for cinema, online, festivals, or a simple podcast, Full English Post provides the highest quality recording, sound design, and mixing for your content.