Sixieme Son nailed it at the Transform Awards North America. 2 submissions, 2 awards: gold for Merrell, silver for Interac. Different brands, different strategies but always the same fundamental tool: the power of sound.

Share the simple power of being outside

In the highly competitive outdoor category, Merrell is unique. While the competition focuses on the sole athlete conquering nature for personal achievement, Merrell contends everyone should share the simple power of being outside. The brand strives to provide everyday adventures without barriers to anyone.

Merrell has a new understanding of its customers and is seeking to gain more relevance to a younger demographic of 25–35-year-olds who enjoy being in nature together. 

Auditing the category’s use of music, Sixième Son revealed an opportunity for Merrell to stand out as the only outdoor brand to embrace welcoming natural sounds and convivial human voices in their sonic vocabulary. The objective was to create a modern sonic identity that would serve as an invitation to explore the outdoors together. The result is an original, unique and ownable sound for Merrell and its nature-loving fans.

A sonic system was created to flex across all of Merrell’s content to fit a variety of styles and emotions. The system includes an adaptable logo structure, sonic DNA, comprehensive music library and event music kit. 

In the few months since its debut, the Merrell creative team has infused the sonic identity into a wide range of content across all social and business channels. 

Consumer testing in the target demographic confirmed the sonic identity evokes both the sound of adventure but also the calming aspect of nature.

Consumer testing of the sonic logo revealed the following results.

200 U.S. participants in the target demographic (male and female, age 25-35).

When asked what values sonic logo brings to the brand, the top three answers were:

Confident (65%)
Approachable (63%)
Encouraging (61%)

After exposure to Merrell name in connection with sonic logo

42% of respondents felt “more connected” to brand
44% “want to buy” Merrell brand

Helping you get more out of life

Interac Corp. empowers Canadians to access, spend and send funds whenever and from wherever they choose. It is one of Canada’s leading and most trusted financial brands, with Canadians choosing Interac products an average of 18 million times a day to pay and exchange money.

Though Interac services make up part of Canadians’ daily routines, people are not often aware of how the company simplifies their lives. Developing one recognizable sonic ecosystem to build sonic branding association to the Interac Brand became an opportunity for the brand to stand out.

Interac gives Canadian users everyday control of their money and now celebrates its service’s ease with a new tailor-made sound. It is fresh, upbeat and timeless. It prioritizes interoperability, security, privacy and inclusivity.

Resulting from very collaborative creative work, this new brand asset embodies the brand tagline: InLife or, in French, Inspiré par la vie. With very few but recognizable notes, the sonic logo conveys the brand’s great agility in connecting humans. It reflects Interac’s ability to support customers in their day-to-day projects, with simple solutions and complete trust.

The new sound makes it a top-of-mind brand when it comes to payments, electronic transfers and digital banking solutions in Canada. It enables Interac to differentiate itself, capitalizing on a positive and consistent sound across all touchpoints: TV, online streamers, digital platforms and corporate content.

When it comes to what it says about the brand, people agree that the brand is:

Innovative (82%)
Confident (74%)
Approachable (65%)
Smart (62%)

Upon learning that the sonic logo belongs to  Interac: 

50% Say that the sonic logo positively affects their brand perception 
61% Feel it is more relatable to themselves
55% Feel closer to the brand
53% Want to use Interac more frequently