Wednesday, May 11, 2011

How sound can influence your customers

Make sure you play the right tunes around your brand. A new Swedish survey on what impact music has on businesses in public places clearly shows that ’the right music’ has a positive impact on businesses in public places such as shops and restaurants. ’The right music’, being music that fits the brand or business profile, played at the right volume, making people stay longer, consume more and recommend your business to others. But what happens if a business plays music that is ’wrong’?

‘The wrong music’ makes 44% of consumers and visitors leave a business and 38% won’t come back.  Almost 4 out of 10 also say that ‘the wrong music’ makes them buy less.

32-41% of the respondents say they would react negatively or very negatively to silence, or more precisely the absence of music in a business such as a shop, restaurant, hairdresser or at the shopping mall. And more than 6 out of 10 of 16-24 year olds would react negatively or very negatively if a gym didn’t play music.

The survey reveals that public places work as a source of inspiration! More than half of 16-24 year olds have discovered new music as well as new artists when they have visited a business in a public place.

How well do people notice the music that is played in public?

Download full report

Talking about sound, I find these studies, presented in Martin Lindstrom´s fascinating book "Buy-ology" interesting.

When classical music was played in the London underground, robberies dropped with 33 percent, assaults on staff by 25 percent, and vandalism by 37 percent. When researchers at the University of Leicester played different kinds of music over the speakers of the wine section in a large supermarket, people made different purchase decisions.

Another study showed how you can drive customers towards a certain product with the help of music. When French music came out of the speakers in a shop, 77 percent of consumers bought French wine, but when people instead got to listen to German music the vast majority of them bought wine from Germany.

Professor Arjun Chaudhuri, author of the book "Emotion and reason in consumer behaviour" has shown that positive emotions generated by music become associated with the advertised product through classical conditioning. Still, a study about branding and music from Heartbeats International showed that 97 percent of brand managers think that music can strengthen their brand, but most of them (7 out of 10), however, only spend 5 percent or less of their marketing budget on music, and only 4 of 10 had identified the sound of their brand. 38 percent of them said that this was because it was too hard to measure a return on investment.

Make sure your brand reaches people´s soul through all senses!

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