Most people have an emotional connection to music because of a specific song, performing artist, or experience.


There is a moment of euphoria when you hear the music tied to an important event or season of life. That connection is a driving force for a consumer, and one that brands passionately try to create within their music partnerships.

The power of a song or artist(s) can take consumers on an authentic journey, which has the potential to lead to sales. The process of finding the right partner is very important, and it requires an understanding of your consumer, what they respond to, and the authentic connection needed to launch a music program.

So why should your brand care about music? The wrong partnership can cripple a brand’s perception and affinity with its audience. However, the right partnership can enhance a brand’s consumer experience and long-term loyalty.

Brian Wagner, the Assistant Commissioner of Marketing for the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development, has successfully helped change the Tennessee tourism story by utilizing the power of music in an authentic and strategic way. During his previous role running marketing for The Ryman, one of the top venues, and most iconic, in Nashville, Wagner had a front row seat to audience experience through music. He has taken that expertise to TN Tourism and used music artists as powerful storytellers to connect with various audiences.

Because of his ear on the pulse of the industry and vision for TN Tourism, Wagner has bypassed the common mistakes brands make when partnering in music and has seen an economic impact because of the state’s “Soundtrack of America: Made in Tennessee” program.


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