What is ASMR?

ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) is a new form of relaxation that is starting to make a real buzz on Internet. ASMR is a series of videos offering help for Internet users to fall asleep or concentrate. Investigating on this new phenomenon #simplement.



How does ASMR work?

ASMR is based on triggers: sensory stimuli that helps relaxation. It is a feeling of well-being generally felt in the neck, head and shoulders, resulting in a slight shiver. ASMR uses auditory stimuli (murmurs, southing voices, faint noises, repetition of words and the use of specific materials to create pleasant sounds), visual such as (close-ups on a faces, objects, and other calming settings).

First appearing in the United States in 2008, ASMR was initially a relatively unknown phenomenon even causing some who watched in the contrary to feel uncomfortable and annoyed. Yet, ASMR continues to grow: YouTube now offers more than 10 million videos related to ASMR. GentleWhispering was the first to go over the symbolic stage of one million subscribers on YouTube in 2017.

In September 2016, Google named ASMR as: “The biggest YouTube trend you’ve never heard of”. A observation that is based on a 200% increase in the search for the word ASMR on YouTube during the year 2015, and the figure continues to grow…


Brands and ASMR: a winning couple?

In recent years, ASMR has also been introduced into the professional sphere, with many top brands seeing new business potential with ASMR. They are using this new concept in their communication in order to maximise profits. A doctor of management sciences-psychology of the consumer, Romain Cally, indicates that “if this method of relaxation is effective, the benefit generated by ASMR is doubled, because the brand can benefit a possible emotional transfer”. If the brand is able to communicate by using ASMR, its product has more chance to be attractive to consumers, given that this concept is originally a relaxation method resulting in a positive connection.


IKEA seduces by whispering

IKEA was the first brand to see potential in this strategy and has produced its own ASMR content in September 2017. Named “Oddly Ikea”, this film, made by Ogilvy in New York City, may seem strange if we do not know the concept and codes of ASMR. Released at the end of August, the film was intended for students returning to school, and more specifically, those who live in college dormitories. A young woman delicately touches objects to produce relaxing sounds which provokes a positive reaction: hands gently stroking a fitted sheet and arranging it carefully on a mattress. A calm and feminine voice announces its price. At the beginning of the video, the young woman whispers “Welcome to the ASMR from IKEA, or if you prefer, IKEA weird version”…

On one hand, furniture is an essential element to our well-being and comfort. On the other hand, ASMR is the Art of using furniture, its quality, its resonance or properties. By associating these two things, it in turn triggers a state of well being. In a way, ASMR is therefore in the continuity of the DNA of the furniture designer kits. 

Also, making content available on YouTube allows, for example, allows you to be able to reach that target directly in bed or in their home. We listen to the furniture. We feel the furniture. We can connect to the furniture. In this way, the use of ASMR by IKEA is not a simple desire to follow the trend but a real choice.

The video has generated more than 1,150,000 views since last August. As a result, IKEA’s ASMR commercial stands out among their many advertisements.



Finally, whether ASMR really works or not, it does not matter to marketers. Indeed, this concept is a way to promote the brand and respond to current trends. Especially using the virality of the Internet, not just the target of the brand but anyone anywhere can be impacted.




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