3 Reasons Why Music Matters in Restaurants

Aug 16, 2022 11:50:39 AM

Restaurant Audio

Let's face it, everyone loves to go out to their favorite restaurant. Whether it's an evening with a group of friends, a birthday celebration, maybe a work dinner, or even an anniversary. We've congregated around the table and made lasting memories for decades. Another favorite pastime of many members of society is listening to music or heading to a favorite musician's concert. Music has long provided an emotional pull for humans that very little can. It can completely change the emotion a person is feeling, or set the tone and feel of a space. When you pair a food experience with the correct music you can create both an atmosphere and a memory that lingers and stays with the consumer for a very long time. This can create repeat customers, and referral marketing that moves the needle and increases the foot traffic through your doors. It doesn't matter whether your customers are eating in a fine dining restaurant, a hip bar, or even a small coffee café, music plays a fundamental part in the retail mix in the restaurant space. Here are a few things to consider when discussing your music strategy in your dining or hospitality based business. 


Something we've learned throughout the years by reading a lot of research on the topic, and experiencing it through our clients first hand is that music can impact taste and actually drive repeat business. In fact, science shows that playing low-pitch sounds while eating makes many foods actually taste better due to enhancing all of the senses. When eating sweet food,  slightly higher pitch tone can enhance the flavor, thus the faster paced environment that often has sweeter foods can most likely accommodate a higher pitched, faster paced playlist. The volume of the music also plays a part: when the background noise is too loud it takes away from the sensory experience and can detract from flavorful food. Music style and volume are important to creating a lasting experience. Coffee shops or patisseries that often produce background conversations and tend to be a little mixed pace with sweeter treats should play higher-pitched songs, whereas bars and pizzerias, or busy casual restaurants should play low, deep sounds that can resonate in the space. 

Reason 2: music improves the waiting experience

The right music in a space of waiting or queueing can relieve anxiety and put guests at ease. A sense of mindfullness and relaxation can be created causing guests to simply speak to one another, or even just sit back in a char or on a bench and wait for their turn at the restaurant.  Waiting guests don’t become as stressed if soft music playing in the background to relax their senses. The science behind this first was implemented at doctors offices and dentists throughout the years and has spilled over into restaurants and retail and can make a real difference in the happiness levels of guests. Slow paced audio that is comforting (despite being slow) has been proven to make time seem as if it is speeding up and actually passing quicker. If you run a busy restaurant, make sure to start the day playing, slow music, to make it seem as if a customer's busy morning is more relaxed and they have time to wait for that cup of coffee. 

Reason 3: music can actually increase customer spend

Classical music in up-scale restaurants has proven to increase consumer spend by an approximate 5% because they are viewed as higher class than even some more expensive restaurants that don't play music. The effect audio has on the sensory part of the brain that controls the desire to spend money is undeniable. If you manage a fine dining restaurant it is important to play sophisticated classical music to increase revenue. This will help to make your guests feel affluent, and important. If you run a coffee shop or even a small restaurant on the other hand playing calming yet upbeat music can help to drive additional customer spending.

Always choose your own playlists with the help of a trained professional. It is important to not cater to personal tastes, but rather what the research shows.Creating the appropriate atmosphere emotionally is important to your bottom line, your customer experience, and the likelihood of driving repeat business..


Topics: Video Audio

Jacob Zupancic

Written by Jacob Zupancic

Jake is an Account Manager at PTG. He is responsible for taking care of existing clients and ensuring that any new projects are taken care of. As part of his role, he is also charged with the task of finding new and innovative ways to expand PTG's portfolio of clients.

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