Monday, 26 September 2016

Is that music to their ears?

The missing piece in the Brand experience puzzle is so often the audio.  It’s easy to see the beautiful interiors our customers will observe and feel, assess the level of customer service they will experience, taste and smell the cuisine and wine they will order, but so very often, what they hear is just overlooked or added as an afterthought.  To deliver a truly memorable experience, audio has to be weaved seamlessly into the sensory mix to create a coherent, holistic result.

Whether you are targeting millennials or any other key market sector, it is becoming more and more important to deliver a coherent and quality soundtrack to each and every experience.  But getting the audio right is not just about delivering the right soundtrack but it's also about using the correct hardware for your space.  Great music delivered through the wrong speakers will always sound bad, however carefully picked the playlist is.  A sound system which has been expertly designed specifically for your requirements and space, using carefully chosen hardware, will always show off the music you have chosen to its very best.

There is a growing body of evidence which supports the fact that audio affects your mood and emotions and as such can change the way in which you react and behave. Our brains receive so many subtle cues from what our ears pick up, that a great deal of our conscious and unconscious moods and behaviour are attributable to what we hear.  Audio is a critical strand in determining how our customers will feel when they experience a venue, not just at the time, but for many years to come, as music is also a powerful tool in evoking memories.

It’s not just about what is played, but also the way in which we hear it which can affect us emotionally. When we listen to warm rich sound with depth and clarity, it can envelop you with feelings of opulence and quality, like sinking into a big comfortable chair from which you don’t want to get up. Conversely, sound that is thin, scratchy and sharp is irritating and something you wish to shut out and move away from as quickly as possible.  So getting the delivery of the soundtrack in your venue right is just as crucial as getting the soundtrack itself right.

When we hear songs from the past they can stir powerful emotions and transport us back in time. Like stepping into a time machine; you can feel everything as if you were actually there. The relationship between music and memory is powerful, all the more reason to get the right associations for your venue, delivered in the right way, to ensure that wonderful memories continue to to be conjured up in the minds of your customers for years to come.

As you seek to differentiate yourself and the experiences you offer, ask yourself; how are we delivering the soundtrack to our guest’s experience?  The greatest interior design, lighting scheme and legendary customer service, whilst crucial, cannot counteract the bad memories created or the negative, uncomfortable feelings generated from a poor soundscape.

Make sure that the audio experience you offer your guests really is music to their ears.