Finding the Perfect Playlist
Music branding in small restaurants
Not only does music influence our emotions and thoughts, it also influences our behavior. It has the power to lead our perception of value and even make us pay higher prices. Brands had soon realized the potential of communicating with their customers through music in their commercial spaces, but the music played was not always aligned with the strategy of the brand. Music branding was created in an attempt to achieve companies’ communicative goals using music as a controlled strategic tool. However, since music and our relation with it has an unique place in our life, it is common for small businesses to manage their companies’ music branding on their own, based on their own taste. Moreover, professional music branding companies focus their attention on big companies rather than on small businesses. Therefore, this thesis aims to understand the perception and application of music branding within small businesses like restaurants. In order to gain knowledge about the value of music branding as a strategic communication tool, interviews were conducted with nine companies offering professional music branding services. On the other hand, seven small restaurants were interviewed to understand the criteria behind their background music selection. The study concluded that small restaurants had a good understanding about basic principles of music branding but lack congruence and a holistic brand communication. Music branding companies on the other side focused on medium and big companies and overall did not represent an alternative to existing music streaming services. In addition, prices vary depending on the client and this could be perceived as an out of reach service for many businesses that could afford and benefit from music branding.