Pull Makes the Music of Emojis for Pepsi Instragram Campaign

 Emojis aren’t just magic – they’re musical too. The NYC-based music company Pull helped bring these digital icons to life, with three fun themes made for Pepsi’s recent Instagram campaign celebrating World Emoji Day.  

Each 14-second spot created by agency The Barbarian Group features a different musical expression of emojis, animated by old-school stop motion techniques. Pull composer Mitch Davis gave “Texting” a breezy guitar riff bouncing off a perky rhythm. “In The Club” is powered by a programmed jam with thick bass buzzes. In “Football,” emojis hit the gridiron to the rhythm of a super sharp drumline. Pull also provided all sound design for the spots.

Knowing that the campaign would debut on social media, Davis made sure that the music would translate well on a mobile device speaker or earbuds. “This wasn’t going to be played in a large 7.1 system so I simplified the mix to match the simplified visuals,” Davis explains. “It’s a fun shorthand for these environments.”

Working in his distinctive SoHo studio – which has hosted collaborations with U2, Danger Mouse, and Bobby Womack -- Davis intentionally kept the music as “flat” as possible, in keeping with the two-dimensional world of emojis.

“These are digital smiley faces that live in a flat visual plain, so it wouldn’t make sense for the sound to be coming from all over the place,” he notes. “The tracks were mixed mostly in mono, all spatial effects like reverb or delay were kept to a minimum, and everything was mic’d as close as could be. Finally, we tested each song by listening to it on our phones before sending it on to the client.”