The Evolution of Music in the Hospitality Industry
By Derrick Garrett Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Roundhouse Multimedia | May 12, 2019
There have been many areas of evolution in the hospitality industry. The bed has been one area of focus, as I mentioned in my previous article. It is a part of hotels' upfront marketing, has created a buzz and driven business in some well-done cases. Look at telephones; they have always been in the rooms and once cost a fortune to use them. Now most calls are free. The all-inclusive resort market as a whole has quite possibly experienced the greatest evolution over the past two decades. What was once a quick fix for cheap getaway is now the extreme opposite.
The emphasis has shifted away from the price point; it is now experiential. Long gone are the endless, tasteless buffet menus on a limited rotation. If it wasn't for the fact you don't get a check at the end of a meal, you would easily forget you were in an all-inclusive setting these days. The à la carte restaurants in the all-inclusive arena are varied from French to Mexican, Italian to hibachi, with excellent choices, cuisine and tableside ordering.
There can be parallels drawn between the evolution of all-inclusive resorts and music in the hospitality industry. Just as three repetitive buffet meals a day will no longer cut it, neither will the same playlist streaming throughout every area of the resort on repeat. The à la carte restaurant approach needs to be applied to music in the hotel industry.
The same music for the lobby and the pool and the sushi restaurant and the spa and the breakfast buffet and the gym and the lounge and the bar is… have I begun to make my point? Repetitive. Music needs to be part of the upfront marketing story and strategy, just as the bed and restaurants are. It's part of the experience. Music is much more a strategic part of the story and branding – a driver and influencer – than people give it credit for. It drives the guest experience and revenue when done right.
We Need Music vs. What Kind of Music Do We Need
Music at hotels is not new. There has always been music, but not necessarily the right music. It was background music, both literally and figuratively. More of an afterthought than a strategy. Those who have their arms around – and ears in tune – with the true branding experience know that music is as important as the artwork.