Storytel – When voices become audio branding
BETTER SOUND 2020 | Categories: 4.1 Audio Marketing, 4.2 Audio Branding
Lexter Ljuddesign AB
The audio universe and audio branding for Storytel is based purely upon the recorded narrator voices from Storytel’s own global audiobook library. This makes the audio branding a natural part of Storytel, connecting different countries, languages and cultures over the world with the brand.
Storytel is one of the world’s leading audiobook streaming services. With over 1,1 million paying subscribers globally and a service that’s available in 20 markets, Storytel provides people in all ages and cultures over the world with 400 000+ fun, sad, humoristic, dramatic, scary, educational and documentary stories, both in audio and e-book format. Also, Storytel’s own publishing department globally transform more than 6000 texts into audio stories, yearly. The possibility to listen to stories anywhere, anytime is an important part of Storytel’s service.
In 2019, Storytel renewed their visual profile and shaped a new tonality in how the brand is expressed. Providing a huge service within audio, audio branding was a given next step in the branding process. A big challenge was ahead: How could we create an audio branding universe that would convey the brand and its service and at the same time work globally when cultures, languages and music differs over the world? Lexter went back to the core: The stories. For thousands of years, humans have told stories. Stories connecting people through generations and cultures. And although written stories have been around for a long time, spoken stories have been around even longer. We started to listen to the stories and voices in Storytel’s big audiobook library, and among all these fantastic stories we could hear something more. The voices were like music to our ears.
Lexter started to collect and create different musical building blocks based on the narrator voices and stories in Storytel’s great, global audiobook library. And just like Storytel among many qualities has a warm, playful and friendly brand personality, we wanted to express these nuances with the building blocks. By layering and processing the voices in different ways we could create synthetic musical instruments of them. By stretching, tuning and filtering the voices we created warm synth pads and whistling. By granularizing the voices we created friendly, beautiful choirs. And by layering the different stories together, we created “dooh-like” choirs that could play playful melodies.
With nothing else but the recorded voices from Storytel’s audiobook narrators themselves, we started to create the sound of the brand – the Storytel audio universe. A palette of sound effects, instruments, unique sounds and logos based purely on the voices, connecting different languages, cultures and ages over the world. This was all placed in a digital audio branding platform with all the unique sounds and logos as well as custom synthesizer patches, so that Storytel can use it to create new audio branded music whenever they need. The audio universe is produced to be implemented in all types of marketing channels and is a flexible brand building tool. The Storytel audio universe was launched in April 2020 and has already been implemented in several commercials and audiobooks, making sure a consistent audio brand is presented and expressed globally.