Music as pleasant time travel
Immedia Group's Dr Vicky Williamson writes ... This week I have been thinking about the role of music as a means of fooling old father time.
In times of increased economic diligence a shopping trip is likely to be seen by more and more people as a treat; something to be anticipated, savoured and enjoyed.
And even if a person is not a shopping fan, the experience should be as pleasant as possible in order to make for a good impression and foster favourable word of mouth.
A keen retail outlet should therefore use as many means as possible to boost our enjoyment. So what can be really annoying in a retail environment?
I’m pretty sure most of us would agree that waiting is close to the top of that list: Waiting at a till, waiting for a changing room, waiting for customer service or waiting for our shopping companion to browse through items that do not interest us.
Standing idle and frustrated, feeling precious leisure time slipping away. We’ve all been there! In a busy shop there is only so much that conscientious, hard working staff and a premium, frequently modified visual layout can do to minimise waiting times and the subsequent negative impact on the customer. What more can be done? There is an easy tool at the retailers’ fingertips that can have a magic effect on our sense of time – music. In truth, this is no secret.
This is one of the main reasons why telephone customer services often opt to use music during a waiting period. Background music has the potential to distort our sense of the passage of time, especially if it is well selected, enjoyable music. And – just a note for all the phone music planners out there – as long as it doesn’t repeat all the time!