Everything You Need to Know About Playing Music in Your Restaurant
Restaurants sell so much more than just food. They’re also selling the experience. If you aren’t thinking about how to improve the ambiance to match the vibe, the menu, and your customer base, then you’re making several hiccups that could lead to ruin. The ambiance is so much more than the décor. It’s the full package. It’s the arrangement of the tables, it’s how bright it is, it’s the smell, the sights, and yes, the sounds. One of the most transient elements of ambiance is the music, but with this guide, you’ll find everything you need to know to master the art of music accompaniments and what you need to do to play the right songs in your restaurant.
What Type of Restaurant Are You?
The first step is to understand what vibe you’re going for, keeping in mind that it can and should change throughout the day. Restaurants that are big date spots in the evenings can and should try to attract business workers or families throughout the day to keep business flowing in.
This means you’ll need multiple sets of music to suit the time of day and the type of customers you’re trying to attract. This music, of course, should always be themed after your menu and overall store. If you’re a traditional Italian place, for example, then opting for a few different playlists of Italian music to suit the time of day and meal should be your go-to. If you’re a fusion restaurant, you should look at more modern options.
Restaurant music licensing laws do exist and must be adhered to. The good news is that it’s not difficult at all to play by the rules and gain access to quality playlists that, most importantly, don’t have breaks, ads, or a host. A simple business subscription to a B2B music streaming site can handle all the legal requirements and give you access to all the music and more you’ll want – without the hassle of putting playlists together yourself.
There is a sweet spot when it comes to music. You never want to drown out your patrons or make it difficult for them to talk to one another. You also don’t want the music to be so quiet that your customers barely notice it’s there at all. Finding that sweet spot can take a bit of work, and keep in mind the right volume will likely change depending on how full your restaurant is.
Understanding the Acoustics
To help you get the right volume level, you need to master the acoustics in your restaurant. Flat, smooth surfaces will bounce more sound, which is why volumes will need to be lowered when there are only a few people in your restaurant. You can control this by adding tablecloths, tapestries as decoration, and using partition walls to not only divide up your space, but also break any echoing. From there, you’ll need to add smaller high-quality speakers throughout the space so that you can add rich-sounding music at the right volume, every time.