Audio Branding: Using Music to Create Your Restaurant Identity

Mother and daughter site and enjoy food and music for restaurants in a quick service restaurant.

Your restaurant brand bears much more responsibility than having a memorable logo and a catchy slogan. From the colors, lighting, and decor to the menu selections, uniforms, and managing staff, you’ve invested a wealth of time and resources into creating an immersive multi-sensory experience that keeps customers coming back for more.

But have you ever stopped to think what your restaurant actually sounds like?


The Power of Audio Branding

The fast-casual restaurant landscape is constantly evolving, and savvy business owners know that if they want to differentiate their brand from the competition, they have to stand out.

This is where sound comes into play.

In marketing, audio branding is the approach of using unique, proprietary sound and music to convey a brand’s essence and values. And when used correctly, it can create a visceral connection that other types of branded communication can’t.

For QSR and fast food restaurants, audio branding with music has the ability to:

  • Impact purchase behaviors
  • Boost brand loyalty
  • Connect with customers on an emotional level
  • Reinforce brand values and personality
  • Increase employee morale and productivity
  • Unify multi-unit locations

Selecting the Best Music for a Restaurant

Background music for restaurants not only plays an integral role in shaping a diner’s experience, but also in establishing your business’ values and individuality.

Not sure where to start? Keep these four tips in mind when creating your restaurant playlist:

1. Choose music that matches your theme

If you’re a family-friendly establishment, chances are you won’t be blasting Eminem over the speakers. Matching your music to your brand’s personality is crucial because it helps reinforce your message with your customers.

For example, if you manage a diner, you might consider playing 50s & 60s music to enhance the retro-style vibe of the business. Feel free to test out our 50s & 60s Greatest Hits station for some inspiration.

Morale of the story? Think about what you’re trying to convey before you hit play.

2. Know your audience

Having a firm understanding of your brand’s personality is only part of the equation: when it comes to selecting the right music for your restaurant, you also have to know what demographic you’re catering to.

A chart of the demographic data of avid fast food eaters. Use music in your fast food restaurant to target certain demographics, like millennials.

Is your customer base mostly families? Millennials? Young couples? Your restaurant’s music plays an integral role in the customer experience, so make sure you’re giving your audience what they want.

3. Be consistent

If you’re playing classic rock at one restaurant and the latest country hits at another, there’s a good chance you’re sending mixed signals to your customers. Your restaurant’s audio component should not only be recognizable, but continuous across multiple customer touchpoints and multi-unit locations.

Learn how our client Sara Campbell created a cohesive, branded retail music experience using Cloud Cover Music.

4. Tailor music to your business objectives

Studies have shown that tempo has a direct correlation with the amount of time individuals spend in restaurants. If you’re looking to turn tables, aim for fast-paced restaurant music. Want your guests to stay longer and spend more money? Opt for slow tempo tunes. The best restaurant music services have stations curated by tempo to help you better achieve your business goals.

Graph of the average time in seconds of quick service restaurant (QSR) data for 2016. Restaurant music can speed up the checkout process.

With millions of fast food restaurants and quick service restaurant franchises across the United States and Canada, standing out from the crowd has never been more important. Cloud Cover Music’s business music service allows you to create a unique mix of music that helps reinforces your brand’s message, while instilling confidence in your customers and employees. Try us for free today.


Learn more about how you can Match Your QSR Business Goals with a Restaurant Music Solution and put sonic branding into action.


Cloud Cover Music offers restaurant business music solutions to make a difference in your sales.