CNN International Rebrand

CNN International Rebrand

Speaker: Alex Moulton, Expansion Team
Client: CNN International
Agency: Expansion Team, New York, USA



In 2008, CNN International (CNNi) challenged Expansion Team to reinvent “news music” for the 21st Century. To educate themselves and their client before composing a single note, the Team investigated the storied trajectory of news sonification, from the horns of the ancient Greek herald, to the percussive teletype sounds of early radio broadcasts, to wartime newsreels, to the grand orchestrations of the late 20th Century, examining how and why the “news music” aesthetic evolved into a style that no longer resonates with contemporary audiences. The new audio brand package launched in September 2009, including an adaptable updated network mnemonic and a template for the continued creation of localized themes for each region in which the network is broadcast. Expansion Team’s founder and creative director, Alex Moulton, will take the audience on a journey through the unusual history of “news music” and will share the insights that now guide the ongoing audio evolution of one of the most recognized news networks in the world, including an unexpected formula for creating a unified theme across a vast array of region-specific genres.

Time period of realization

Initial branding presentation: September 2008
Audio Rebrand launch: August 2009
Audio Production: May 2009 – ongoing


Video Trailer