Do More Than Fill Dead Air: Put On-Premise Music To Work For Your Brand

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Forward-thinking casual restaurant brands are increasingly developing branded social and mobile applications to enrich customer experience, increase engagement, and ultimately gain a competitive edge. From valet parking, reservations and coupons to pre-ordering dine-in meals and requesting on-premise music, there’s an app out there for just about anything – even to reserve a bar stool.

Although apps are an excellent tool to build brand loyalty and engagement and offer services or entertainment value for customers, many brands struggle to offer a meaningful tie-in to their on-premise music experience. And custom apps can be costly to develop, implement, support and promote, making it a risky investment given its uncertain ROI. Sadly, many will inevitably have a short shelf life due to declining adoption and eventual abandonment after the campaign or promotion used to launch the app has expired.

More Than Background Music

Traditionally, establishments leveraged popular jukeboxes as a way to entertain patrons, provide atmosphere and build brand affinity. If you’re over the age of 21, you likely remember the joy of heading to a local hangout, dropping a dollar in the jukebox and listening to your favorite songs while you socialized with family and friends. More than just background music, the jukebox used to enable social engagement and atmosphere. Essentially, the jukebox was not only one of the first forms of on-premise music, but also one of the first forms of brand engagement that was central to the customer experience. 


"The rise of Internet radio, satellite and iTunes effectively 
killed the jukebox."


Casual restaurant employees and diners are now typically subjected to five preset standard music channels comprised of a few hundred – often overplayed – songs that rarely have personal affinity or meaning to the customer. Gone are the days of interactive engagement and the delight of social engagement – on-premise music has been relegated to being a way to simply fill dead air. Furthermore - businesses are often times subject to monthly playlist updates that carry no measurable value. 

Fact: the wrong music at the wrong time has an adverse effect on restaurant atmospherics. However, technologies now exist to bridge the digital divide between the traditional jukebox and streaming media, offering smart and social music solutions designed for a new generation.


"Instead of relying on passive music channels in the background to fill the void, establishments can put on-premise music to work for them via a customized mobile application that enhances customer experience."


Music can be more than just a way fill dead air in your establishment, and many brands are already embracing next-generation solutions. If you're going to play music, use it to your advantage instead of making it another line item on your budget report. Take advantage of today's actionable technologies to enhance the customer experience and a lot more. Ask yourself: how can I engage my customers and employees so they are contributing and personally invested to my establishment’s dining experience. 

If music be the food of love, play on...

William Shakespeare


Engage Your Customers  With Music

Christopher Ezell

Christopher advises enterprise brands at the intersection of restaurant technology and guest experience. He enjoys leading top restaurant brands toward measurable customer engagement and smart, on-premise marketing opportunities.