Classical music is the food of love for restaurants
In Twelfth Night, Shakespeare writes that if music be the food of love, play on, and it seems that this quote has many meanings, especially in the restaurant industry. Music may well be the food of love, but it seems that Beethoven, Brahms, Bach and Mozart are all responsible for us eating more indulgently too.
Whilst for years, there have been murmurs of classical music making us smarter, scientists have now proven that classical music really does make diners feel more affluent, and thus encourages them to spend more money.
A concerto has been proven to make you want to order the lobster or the filet mignon, while less sophisticated tunes, such as those sung by Britney Spears, see restaurant patrons opting for less extravagant dishes and spending, on average, 10% less on their meals.
Food for thought
It looks like in store music has become something of a science, with companies like https://moodmedia.co.uk creating custom soundtracks to encourage customers and to create a signature brand sound. When you consider that researchers at the University of Leicester recently found that classical music was the most encouraging in helping people part with cash, it’s easy to see why sound has become such an important part of shopping and dining out.
Classical music seems to have associations with affluence and will make patrons dig deeper into their wallets. In contrast, no music was a real mood killer, and during the study it seemed that when there was no backing track to a dining experience, considerably less food was ordered.
The classical effect
The University of Leicester conducted its tests over a period of 3 weeks and they monitored the effects of classical and pop music, along with background silence, in conjunction with restaurant spending.
When subtle classical music was played, spending increased by more than £24 per person, but when pop music was played, spend averaged out at less than £22 per head. Background silence saw an average spend of only £21.70 per diner, and the choice of dishes was also far less extravagant. In the same test, diners also spent far more on coffee when listening to classical music and when there was silence, the coffee-spend dropped to almost half.
It is amazing how music affects us, and this study illustrates why so many restaurants opt for classical!