HomeFEATURESChristmas music: to carol or not to carol

Christmas music: to carol or not to carol

santa listening to music

It’s that time of year again when retailers across the country ask themselves whether they should start playing Christmas music.

Some people love it, and some people hate it.

What Christmas music should I play? How much is too much? While it can be a difficult balance to strike, the key is knowing your audience when planning holiday music for your store.

A 2014 study from the Research Intelligence Group saw 36 percent of participants saying they left stores sooner because they weren’t interested in the Christmas tunes.

On the flip side, research shows that Christmas music alongside festive scents such as cinnamon can actually make some shoppers happier and more likely to spend money. 

Timing is also crucial. In a 2015 HuffPost poll, 43 percent of Americans said stores should wait until a month before Christmas before introducing their holiday playlists.

Partner in the Retail Advisors Network, Bruce Winder told Adweek that retailers should analyse their target audience and adjust their festivities to their needs. 

Instead of boosting a repetitive list of 10 cheesy or comedic songs, it’s probably better to include some family favourites that are respectful. If your retail store happens to be a little less mainstream perhaps explore the indie Christmas carol community, you’d be surprised the amount of alternative holiday music there is out there. 

Some retailer tips for making holiday music work for your audience: 

  • Keep a balance of 60/40 of Christmas music and your usual tunes
  • Maintain an appropriate volume level so elderly and noise sensitives shoppers can still browse in comfort
  • Avoid music with offensive lyrics

Another important thing to remember when planning your music for the holiday season is to make the sure you have the permission you need under the Copyright Act to play music in your business. 

OneMusic offer simple annual music licences that give you the legal permission you need to play virtually all music available worldwide – including Christmas tunes! Licences start from as little as 90c a day and help to ensure that people that write and record music are fairly compensated for the use of their music. 

Find out more or apply for a licence here

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