There was a time when ASMR was considered to be quite a narrow niche and one that would not necessarily be thought of when it came to ideas for advertising food and drink. However, the fact that ASMR videos get millions of views online means that it is something you do not want to miss out on.
ASMR stands for automated sensory meridian response and describes people who feel a physical sensation in response to certain triggers which can be visual or auditory. These sensations are often tingling and are felt on the scalp or on the back of the neck. It has been compared to goosebumps but the feeling you get is one of calm and relaxation rather than fear and uneasiness.
Some of the ASMR videos on YouTube can go on for up to four hours. There are many different things that can trigger ASMR and these are different for everyone. Things, like whispering into a binaural microphone or gently tapping on the microphone, are popular sounds to create. However, there are also lots of things that can be created using food and drink.
The concept of using sound in relation to food and drink is not something that is new. Soft drinks companies have always shown their fizzy drinks being poured over ice cubes that tinkle in the glass. You have probably also seen advertisements where people make sighs of contentment after eating or drinking something particularly delicious. ASMR can also be visual and so the sight of food cooking or being cut into can also be appealing, Incorporating ASMR into adverts for food and drink companies takes the sights and sound associated with eating and drinking one step further.
Food companies have been working with established ASMR artists to produce videos that promote their products. There are artists who will categorize biscuits based on the sounds that they make when you bite into them. The companies that make these biscuits can get a lot of exposure by offering their products for the artist to try out. There are also a number of ASMR cooking videos online and this is another chance for companies to raise awareness of their products by providing the ingredients that will be cooked.
Some companies are also using ASMR in their mainstream advertising. Michelob Ultra is one example of such a company with their ad that aired during the Superbowl. The whole ad was filmed in a similar style to an ASMR video and featured sounds that fans of ASMR would have found pleasurable. This included someone tapping on the bottle and hearing the beer fizz as it was opened. As ASMR is becoming more popular, then there were many people who would have understood what the theme of the advertisement was.
Some ASMR artists have raised concerns about working with certain brands because they don’t want to have any undue influence on their followers. When people are experiencing ASMR then they are in such a relaxed state that they might be more susceptible to advertising than they would normally be. There have been no official studies that prove this is the case, but it is a fairly strongly held belief of some. There are several artists who have pledged to only work with companies that stand for something they believe in.
The key to success for advertising using ASMR is having a message that fits with why people choose to seek it out in the first place. The phenomenon started as a way to relax and combat anxiety, and this is still the reason a large number of people are listening to it today. Food and drink companies who market their products as something to be enjoyed while people are relaxing may find that they have more success with this type of advertising.
Even if people do not feel the full effects of ASMR, they are definitely becoming more aware of the concept. This means we are likely to see more advertising that uses ASMR in the future. Several high profile companies such as Coca-Cola, Lynx and IKEA have already used the concept in their advertising. If it works well for them then it will not be long before other companies start to follow suit.