USAA

That is fantastic news! What a wonderful recognition. A true testament to the value of a close relationship between brands and their agency partners! Well done.

Manuel Bartolini - Director, Brand Strategy

Unique aspect of the brand

Optimism, camaraderie, rigor and authenticity

Challenge

After a competitive analysis of the banking and insurance sectors, it became clear that USAA had the opportunity to increase brand awareness among its key targets. USAA identified sonic branding as a key tool.

The US insurance category boasts some of the oldest branded and recognizable musical cues in the market for decades. Into this environment, USAA undertook to launch a sonic brand that would help create awareness while strengthening emotional bonds with existing customers.

The sonic identity strove to capture the idea that “We serve the military but we’re not the military” and convey the values of optimism, camaraderie, rigor and authenticity, The brand needed to be strong, distinctive and recognizable to break through.

Sonic identity

Optimism, camaraderie, rigor and authenticity.

People’s fondest memory of military service was the camaraderie they had shared, often expressed through call-and-response chants or “cadences,” Sixième Son saw the value in those associations and set out to create a new sound based on that emotional territory.

The idea that emerged for the brand’s sonic logo was completely different from anything in the marketplace with ia voice call, “U-S” and the answering “A-A.”

Results

Quick, measurable impact.

When the USAA sound had been in the marketplace for less than a year, the audio identity attracted attention and positive results. The sonic logo was reported by the Veritonic Audio Logo Index to have ranked high on such measures as authentic, inspiring and trustworthy. It scored higher than the, much older, Nationwide sound, and It also placed 12% points higher than the McDonald’s theme, which had been introduced in 2003. It also ranked in 5 th place among audio logos on the measure of “correctly recognized.” beating many logos that had been in the market for decades.

The lively logo also has been awarded the AMA’s BrandSmart Gold in the category of Innovation as well as a Transform Award in recognition of “best practices in brand design and strategy.”

Credits

USAA

Tony Wells – Chief Brand Officer
Sergio D.Trujillo – Brand Marketing Leader
Manuel Bartolini – Director, Brand Strategy
Kreg Lauterbach – Director/Editor/Photographer/Guitar Dude
Darlene Freeman-Rosser – Lead, Brand Strategy
Ted Yun – Assistant Vice President, Creative & Brand
Linda Aguayo – Marketing Director
Wes Laird – AU.Ranger Marketing Consulting

AGENCY

Michael Boumendil – President & Chief Creative Director
Colleen Fahey – Marketing Director USA
Daina Todorovic – Director of Client Services USA
Philip Guignon – Project Manager, Producer
Valentin Fleur – Head of Strategy Managing Director Canada
David Delazyn – Music Designer
Vincent Turbé – Artistic Director
Alice Lépine – Composer, Designer