Hospitality, Music and its Consumers

The Hospitality Industry is rapidly growing and evolving in Australia, leading to an intensely competitive landscape. Venues need to be leading the way in consumer engagement, to avoid being pushed out of the Industry.

Venue presentation, products and service levels have always aided in consumer engagement, but now, the auditory landscape has become equally important to managing your venues’ bottom line.

People spend a lot of time and effort on the visual aspects of their venue, then they negate their efforts by putting the wrong music on.

Venue owners spend hours of their time and millions of dollars on venue fit-out, aesthetics, beer systems, wine lists and styling – all essential elements in getting the finished product right, but music is often overlooked.

The music played within a venue has many effects: it helps determine the type of people who frequent a venue, it affects their behaviour and it helps them make a subconscious decision about whether or not they’ll come back. Music also helps the venue reaffirm its unique image and differentiate itself from competitors.

Research commissioned by APRA has proven that music significantly affects customer behavior, customer perception of your venue and your bottom-line. This is why music needs to be understood as an important business tool and used to drive patronage and spend per head.

So, does the right music mean more sales?


“In a restaurant it’s all about the tempo of the music,” says  Rachel Torise, ex Front of House Manager for Hugo’s Lounge in Sydney. “You have to put yourself in the position of the person eating the meal.”

If you play slightly faster music, people’s pulse rates pick up. Waiters serve faster, tables rotate quicker and people have less desserts, making it ideal for a lunch service. At night with a different tempo you can make it so people stay longer, have a cocktail, a dessert and another coffee. What works at lunch time probably won’t work at dinner time.

This is where the concept of ‘fit’ comes in.

Does the music match the environment?

In APRA’s research, they found that when customers perceived the venues music to match the stylings of the venue itself, the alcohol consumption was significantly higher.

By understanding your venue and your target customers, your music can be catered to meet the changing needs of your clientele. Music can be adjusted through genre, volume, length, tonality and tempo, all to ensure maximum customer engagement and spend.

How do you select the BEST music to suit your venue?

This is where Music Curators come into play. Just like an interior designer personalises the look and feel of your venue with textures and colours, a Music Curator customises your music to compliment your venues concept and target customers.

With all the free software and cheap music available, many venues don’t immediately see the value in Music Curation. Think of it like this though: Music is not an afterthought for people as they enter a venue – it is one of the first things they consider, often being the deciding factor. So it should be one of the first things a venue manager considers.

As research shows, music selection is far more complicated that putting some playlists together and pressing play.

Commercially licensed streaming companies, such as Q.SIC, take on board all the research available regarding music and bottom line management, then take a data driven approach to understanding what works best for your specific venue and clients.

Having a Music Curator on your team will not only encourage maximum spending from your patrons, but will also help with your teams’ efficiency. Having a professionally Curated Playlist means the venue manager and staff can put their focus back on the patrons (instead of messing around with customizing volumes, tempo, genre, song selection and so on). More focus on patrons means more positive customer experience, increased likelihood of return business, and an extra coffee or dessert gets ordered.

Again, the most successful venues are the ones that are run with a consumer focus, from the decor to the  music selection. The venues with the highest alcohol and / or food consumption have music that is perfectly aligned with the venue brand and its target clientele.

According to research group Ferrier Hodgson’s 2014 report STATE OF THE NATION: HOSPITALITY, trends in the hospitality industry tend to start in the Sydney and Melbourne CBDs and spread from there. So it’s no surprise Q.SIC is already Curating music for about 40 venues across these areas.

As competition intensifies, venues need to take every step possible to be unique and true to their brand and patrons. The right music selection will not only achieve this, it will also stimulate sales and generate return business.

To discuss a quality music streaming service designed for business use in Australia, call Q.SIC today on 1300 113 279 or visit for more info.

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