Apart from picking the right location, getting your storefront in order visually, and designing an effective marketing strategy, music is a key element in making your pop-up store successful.
For over 50 years, in-depth studies have been conducted into the role that music plays in retail performance. It’s clear that choosing the right music helps to define your brand identity, set the mood and influence purchasing behavior significantly. Yet, too often retailers arrange their in-store playlists based on their own preferences, instead of carefully thinking it through and making the soundtrack to their store part of their overall strategy.
Here are some key points to consider when thinking about the role of music in your next pop-up:
- Define your brand.
In-store music should not dominate and distract customers too much. Instead, it should add to the overall experience and be an integral part of how you engage your customers. What lifestyle do your products represent? Are you going for hi-tech, catering to parents with newborn babies or selling high-end jewelry? What age group does your audience primarily belong to? In thinking about the story you want your brand to tell and the specific audience you are speaking to, don’t just think about your visual, but also your sonic identity.
- Tempo, Volume & Genre.
Studies have shown that the longer people linger around, the more likely they are to purchase products. Upbeat music, although appealing to a younger audience, heightens arousal and causes customers to move faster. Slower music keeps people around for longer. The choice of volume depends on your audience. A young audience generally prefers loud music, whereas an older crowd prefers to shop to a less intrusive soundtrack. Then, there is the choice of genre: studies in a wine store have shown that playing classical music, associated with sophistication and status, drives people to purchase higher value brands, while pop music works better when selling youthful apparel.
- Create space.
One of the worst things when visiting a store is when you feel pressured to buy something and your every move is being watched. Customers want to feel at ease in your store. Music helps to mask sounds of movement and conversations and creates a sense of personal space and privacy. Make sure that the music you play enables greater focus, amplifies people’s experience of your brand and helps them forget about time.
Keep it legal.
Every country has its own rules when it comes to playing music in a commercial setting. Make sure you research the legal framework and find out which licenses you require to prevent your business from having to pay hefty fines and allow you to play music without unnecessary stress.
Whether you’re preparing for your first pop-up venue or developing an already established brand, music in your store should never be random. There is a definite science to it and there are plenty of studies readily available online that can help you make decisions about how to best arrange your store’s playlist.