Smartwater Made Four Ambient Soundtracks to Boost Your Wellness

Music to hydrate by

It seems like every brand is a music brand these days.

W Hotels produces festivals and distributes albums. Axe jams with Dutch deejays. Bacardi, that most tuneful of rums, keeps the beat to cocktail sounds. And Singapore Airlines composed a song from the clings, clangs and grrrrrs of its planes.

And of course, branded playlists are legion, from KFC's menu of hip-hop delights to a cheeky celebration of the Game of Thrones finale.

Those are just a few examples, and the overall trend underscores music's power to help brands engage, entertain and—best case scenario—provide added value to keep customers coming back for more.

Which brings us to Coca-Cola's Smartwater, which has hopped on the bandwagon, as it were, by matching four of its hydration products—Flow, Move, Balance and Connect—with original ambient soundtracks designed to reflect each offering's attributes and help consumers pursue holistic wellness.

Anomaly devised the "Smartbeats" campaign, Cornerstone oversaw music development, and Endel provided the audio-tech platform. Producer Toro y Moi recorded contributions from four artists—Washed Out, Empress Of, Nosaj Thing and Madeline Kenney.

The soothing, spacey songs live in this Spotify playlist.

It's mellow stuff, though there's a pleasing variety among the four selections. For example, Kenney's "Flow" feels restful and reflective, while Nosaj Thing's "Move" picks up the pace. 

"This is the busiest, most anxious and most burdened generation ever," Jennifer DelVecchio, Coca-Cola's senior manager of entertainment marketing, tells Muse. "They understand the importance of wellness, but financial and time barriers make integrating wellness into their daily lives easier said than done. With 'Smartbeats by Smartwater,' we're making wellness accessible through the universal medium of music." 

But wait, there's more.

In addition to the four "Soundtracks," each beverage inspired a separate "Soundscape." These play on "endless" loops—if you're into that—and allow for a degree of real-time personalization. The tracks "adapt" in real-time—growing louder or softer, changing tempo, etc.—aligning with a listener's exposure to natural light, heart rate and range of motion. (We're told Coca-Cola receives no personal data from Endel's mobile app as it processes information to tailor the "Soundscapes.") 

"Everyone has their favorite workout playlists, but there is an opportunity in what I call the 'bookends' of a workout to use soundscapes like 'Move' to get grounded and in tune with yourself as you warm up, and then again as you cool down and activate a calmer state in your nervous system," says Joe Holder, creative director of wellness for Smartwater. "Because the cool-down is a warm-up for the rest of your day, being able to shift between your sympathetic (active) and parasympathetic (restful) nervous systems quickly and efficiently supports your total wellbeing by improving everything from digestion to mental clarity to sleep."

This video hits a few of the project's high notes:

Smartbeats by Smartwater

"Smartbeats by Smartwater" reinforces the brand's position as part of users' routines and, at the very least, provides some fresh tunes for chilling.

That could prove beneficial for those of us driven to nervous distraction by our increasingly stressful lives, the tumultuous state of affairs in the world, and way too many sugary, high-caffeine colas.

CREDITS

"Smartbeats by Smartwater"
Client: Coca-Cola/Smartwater
Agency: Anomaly
Music Agency: Cornerstone
Audio Platform: Endel
Production Company: Unreasonable Studios
DP: Andrew Price
Edit House: Unreasonable Studios
Editor: Joe Hung
Assistant Editor: Mike Morra
Mix: Mr Bronx
Color/VFX/Fusion: Oliver Eido
Music Agency: Cornerstone
Audio Platform: Endel

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David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.

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