Case Study DATEV eG

A case study of the development and implementation of a Sound Identity for DATEV eG

Speakers: Claus Fesel, DATEV eG / John Groves, Groves Sound Branding
Client: DATEV eG, Nuremberg, Germany
Agency: Groves Sound Branding GmbH, Hamburg, Germany



DATEV eG, based in Nuremberg, Germany, is a software developing company in the accounting, taxing and financial accountancy sector. Its business activities are mainly in the area of accountancy, human resource management, business management, taxing, enterprise resource planning and organisation in general. DATEV was founded in 1966. Today, with more than 5.800 employees and over 39.000 members, DATEV is one of the biggest information providers and software developers in Europe. DATEV takes branding very seriously. Visually, they are a textbook example of consistency. Their logo is very well known and their company colour – green – makes an instant association with the brand. The brand went through a major repositioning based on the consultation of Prof. Dr. Esch (University of Giessen), one of Germany’s top branding experts.

The process involved reducing the brand to its core values and creating what is termed as a “Brand Steering Wheel” which is a tool to define or redefine a brands values, vision and mission. It was during this process, that DATEV became aware that certain attributes possibly could be communicated more effectively using music and sound. They started researching and soon discovered that there are indeed specialists in this field. The basis for their strategic use of music and sound in their brand communication was born. DATEV conducted a thorough check of the market and, after an intensive screening process, GROVES was given the project.

Starting in 2008 the DATEV sound identity was developed from the brands core using the complete GROVES Sound Branding Development System: from Brand Audit, Market Review, Application Analysis and Sound Workshop – through to the Brand Sound Manual and subsequent monitoring with Sound Check. The Brand Sound Identity today consists of more than 40 Brand Sound Elements that are implemented in over 20 touchpoints.

The DATEV project demonstrates that effective Sound Branding needs a systematic development process and stringent management. The GROVES methodology is well on its way to being the branch standard. Experiencing it from „a“ to „z“ together with an exciting B2B brand is what this case offers. Claus Fesel, Head of Marketing at DATEV and John Groves from GROVES Sound Branding GmbH will be available to give details of the development, implementation and control processes in an interesting and dynamic presentation. Brief description of Brand Sound Elements that have been produced for the brand DATEV:
  • Sound Logo
  • Sound Logo | TV-ending version
  • Brand Song (for on-hold-loop and call-centre usage)
  • Brand Song for motivational usage at trade fair event
  • Several soundscapes for event and trade fair usage
  • Classical trailer version for show walk-ons
  • Over 30 tracks for the DATEV brand lounge
  • Ringtone
  • Intercom
  • Pod casting kit
  • Radio spot
  • Flash programs for web-usage
  • Music-beds for image-films
  • Attention signal for in house usage
  • TV-commercial

Time period of realization

Early 2008 – until today