October 18, 2021

Can pubs be doing more for customer experience?

Our research shows that nearly half of pub-goers think the atmosphere would be improved by music and the sound of people.

It’s been a tough year or so for all pubs, restaurants and retailers, but pubs have arguably had the biggest challenge in getting back to normal, and at a time where many are still announcing that their like-for-like yearly sales are down, those challenges still remain.

Music, and especially live music and gigs, were one of the very last elements to return to pubs, a vital part of the magical pub atmosphere. At one stage, regulations stipulated that people were not allowed to sing-along or dance in a group to music. Doesn’t sound much like fun, does it?

So, it is perhaps not surprising to see that significantly more pub-goers, in comparison to restaurant and shop goers, believe that the experience would have been better with music and the sound of people.

43.3% of pubs goers think the experience would have been better with the sound of music while 44% say it would have been better with the sound of people. The corresponding stats for restaurants are 28.1% (better with music), and 30.3% (better with sound of people), and for retail are 30.2% (better with music), and 24.9% (better with sound of people).

Chart showing people who think the atmosphere would be better with the sound of music


It should not be forgotten that music and atmosphere are vital ingredients to creating a great experience in restaurants and retail. And there is more to a great atmosphere than just the music played. Embracing the combined power of music and technology to shape behaviour is a smart and strategic way to engage customers, improve customer experience and stand out from the competition. That is what at Startle we call Music+.

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Can pubs be doing more for customer experience?

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