ISD Team

What if your brand means train to a whole country and is known by the 99% of the population*? Then, how should the train sound like? A freight one, long distance…in Japan, Western USA? And in Spain? In 2005 Renfe, the national railway Spanish company and virtually unique operator, started a new era. A new company was created separately from the railway infrastructure operations. Brand name remained the same. Just that.

The brand was huge but lacked order and coherence. Products competed within each other and even with the mother brand. Each division of the company worked for its own minibrand and a global branding strategy implementation was tough to imagine. With a new visual brand starting to roll out, Renfe had a long way to go. And then the sound branding came. While still thinking of music for their spots, we presented an ambitious global sound branding strategy that included every business line and touchpoint, from trains to advertising pieces, mobile phones, on hold music or Internet. All with a clear implementation plan. Involving each department and of course, customers.

We bet on the power of sound to change internal dynamics, impress external perception and produce a shift in the brand. And sound made it all work in an unexpected and unanimously tuned way. A sonic and musical solution that everyone loved from the first minute and is still listened by millions of people everyday was the secret. The outcome was such a success that:

  • for 6 years in a row, each and every sonic touchpoint of Renfe includes the audio created
  • the only musical composition used in commercials has been the one we created, producing enormous savings and strong global brand perception.
  • a brand office was created to reinforce brand efforts, mainly visual and audio.
(* 2006 Instituto Nacional de Estadística data ** Renfe was a 14.000 staff and 516 million travellers* company as of 2006. Travellers have grown in 2012 by 0,5%. Instituto Nacional de Estadística data.)
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