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All You Need is Love? Communication Insights from Pop Music's Number-One Hits
Journal of Advertising Research (2014)
  • David H. Henard, North Carolina State University
  • Christian L. Rossetti, Georgia Southern University
In response to calls for further investigation on the role of music and advertising, the authors of the current study analyzed popular music's most successful songs over a 50-year period (1960–2009). The current paper uses a combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches to uncover communication themes from nearly 1,000 songs that best resonated with mass audiences. The study identifies 12 communication themes and finds that they are used repeatedly over time; are largely emotional in nature; appear congruent with contemporary societal and environmental influences; and help predict a song's chances of commercial success. The results provide advertising professionals with a repertoire of themes for consideration in advertising and other marketing communications for mass audiences.
  • Communication insights,
  • Pop music,
  • Number-one hits,
  • Advertising,
  • Marketing
Publication Date
June, 2014
Citation Information
David H. Henard and Christian L. Rossetti. "All You Need is Love? Communication Insights from Pop Music's Number-One Hits" Journal of Advertising Research Vol. 52 Iss. 2 (2014) p. 53 - 66 ISSN: 0021-8499
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