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A Music Supervisor’s Guide to Music Strategy

It’s widely appreciated in the retail industry that the right in-store atmosphere drives footfall. In our latest Mood Media In-Store Trends study, we found that 70% of shoppers believe branded music contributes to a pleasant in-store experience, while 45% say it’s the main key to achieving it. Although opinions vary slightly throughout regions of the world, we found that many retailers appreciate the value of a solid music strategy, with the luxury sector out-performing other sectors in setting the perfect tone.

At Mood Media, we have a team of music experts, researchers and strategists to develop a music strategy that strikes the perfect balance. A playlist and plan that reflects the brand personality whilst ensuring consumers feel at ease and enjoy their time in-store. Our team is dedicated to creating a media solution that compliments the overall brand experience and represents the tone of voice with the perfect collection of artists, tracks and genres.

This month, we took some time with Music Supervisor Ida Glomnes to delve deeper into the world of retail media and music strategies and how they work together. At Mood Media, we have a whole team of Music Supervisors and Researchers working collaboratively to create the perfect music strategies for retailers and hospitality businesses.

What does a Music Supervisor do?
A Music Supervisor works with clients to update playlists and assist with music strategy. They also attend creative review meetings and delve deeper into analytics and research. It’s a team approach for the client and something that develops and grows with the brand in time.

A Music Supervisor’s passion for music is what drives their creativity each day. Listening to music, discovering new artists and working as a team to have creative and strategic discussions and work towards a solution creates an exciting and inspiring process that is vital for designing successful music strategies.

Where do you start when creating a music strategy for a brand?
The first step is to dig deep into the brand. It often starts with social media, reading up on the brand history and looking across their brand materials, marketing messages and channels. It’s also important to take a look into their core customer base. Some of this is done manually by the Music Supervisor or music researcher, but some powerful analytics tools can also be utilised to help build a comprehensive customer profile. This profile creates a clear picture of who the customer is that this is all for. What do they like? Who are they? What bands do they love? What TV do they watch? What’s their story? All of this information regarding their brand and consumer profile is put together and fed into a unique recipe using, what we call, “music filters”.

How do brand Music Strategy Filters work?
Combining manual research and analytical software, a picture starts to emerge about which words or phrases keep popping up. These may be words used in campaigns describing the products and services. They’ll also often appear in the language and style of the brand tone of voice.

From here, a number of filters or ‘buzz words’ are chosen and they remain at the forefront of every decision from here. It’s key to make sure that every song chosen for the playlists represents these filters and the sound of the brand. It’s often surprising how clear the vision is for what the brand sound should be after doing all of this. Often colleagues will go away and do their own research but come together with the same outcome. The process really does work.

Where do you start with discovering new artists for a music strategy?
Listening to a range of provider playlists, like New Music Friday is essential. However, it’s also important to discover new music out there in the real world. Word of mouth is a powerful tool. Friend recommendations, music festivals and local music scenes, all go to create a melting pot of fresh, creative sounds that could work beautifully in a strategy you may be working on.

What is the ultimate goal of music in retail and hospitality environments?
Have you ever been in a gym, shop or hospitality space without music? The space often feels devoid of atmosphere; awkward and uncomfortable. It can sometimes feel too quiet and you don’t feel as though you can spend time there and relax. Music is able to express a brand’s identity through song. It’s an amazing tool for first and lasting impressions to enable customers to feel welcome and increase dwell time.

Music really is a powerful tool to influence moods and behaviours. Each song has the potential to reflect a mood, create an atmosphere or vibe, and influence a customer’s perception of the brand. But it goes beyond the genre and artists. It’s also important to take lyrics into consideration. These are powerful in reflecting the mood of the current situation for the customer profile. Looking back in recent years, it’s been important to lift spirits and create an environment that feels positive, safe and welcoming. Lyrics are able to do just that; whilst ensuring expletives and inappropriate themes are removed.

The role of music strategy cannot be under-estimated in cementing a brand identity and crafting an atmosphere that reflects a tone of voice and style. By regularly reviewing and tweaking the strategy and playlists within it, brands are able to identify what their customers want and how to create the right environment.

Overall, a collaborative approach between the brand and media solution provider creates a seamless solution throughout the consumer journey.

If you are a brand that is looking for a comprehensive music strategy, feel free to get in touch with us here and we’d be happy to assist you.