The term “enterprise” can mean almost anything when it's applied to a business. In a way, it's a synonym for the word “business.”
But when we're talking about an enterprise business, we're typically talking about a company that has a central location with several outposts. It's a very big organization that's spread across many different locations. If you own a business like this, you face unique challenges that the right music might help you to address.
Understanding Enterprise Challenges
It's no secret that businesses of all shapes and sizes are struggling to find and retain good employees. In fact, in a survey conducted by The Conference Board, 80 percent of respondents felt that they'd need to use nontraditional employees (freelancers or short-term employees) to meet employment demands in the future.
Nontraditional employees like this can be a boon for an enterprise business. You can staff up when you need to do so, and you can scale back when your needs change. You might also use employees like this to help you lift a big project off the ground (like a website design), and then step away from these employees when the project is complete. A savvy manager can use this workforce in order to stay nimble and relevant.
But an ever-changing employee roster can be disastrous for your brand. In a study published in the Annals of Tourism Research, scientists interviewed 378 customers and tried to identify key factors that influenced brand equity. They found that physical location was important, but customers also cited staff behavior as a key factor in their understanding of a brand.
Indoctrinating new employees into your brand isn't always easy. They need to read up on your history and your goals, and they may need to interact with star employees to understand how your values are embodied by your workers. It takes time for all of this learning to take hold.
Managers, including top management, may be required to step in and intervene to ensure that the brand is presented consistently by all employees in all locations, and that's an issue. In Harvard Business Review, top managers reported that attending to day-to-day business while thinking and planning strategically was a top concern.
When you're consistently training and managing employees, in order to help them represent your brand, you may not have the time or energy left over to push your brand forward.
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The Role of Music
The music you play in shared work environments and customer-facing spaces can help you address this key branding issue.
Choose the right music, and it can:
- Work subliminally to help new employees understand your culture.
- Help tie disparate locations together under one soundtrack.
- Motivate your employees to work more efficiently.
- Persuade your customers to spend more money.
Think of it this way. When your branding documents were put together for your business, you probably settled on a font for your documents, colors for your logos, and décor for your locations. This branding document was designed to unify all of your locations, giving your customers a consistent experience, no matter where they were within your organization.
That consistency is key to good branding, say experts writing in Forbes. Consumers expect the same experience from location to location if they are interacting with the same brand.
Your music choices should work in the same way. Your consumers and your employees should hear the same sounds whether they're in one of your locations in Seattle, Houston, or Orlando. This unifying force helps to support your brand.
What Music Should You Play?
Now that you understand why music can help and why a consistent playlist from location to location is vital, let's dig into music choices.
When researchers writing for the Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services discussed music, they focused on congruency. The more the music matched the product or the experience, the higher consumers rated the quality of service and the environment they were in.
That means the music you choose should somehow explain or relate to your brand, your products, or your market. The closer the match, the more successful your business is likely to be.
For example, if your enterprise business could be defined as:
- Technologically savvy, your music choices should be somehow computerized and modern. deadmau5, Wolfgang Gartner, and benny benassi be just right for you.
- Luxurious, a classical playlist, heavy on Mozart and Beethoven, could help your customers to think about something that is sophisticated.
- Alternative, a playlist that's heavy on Steven Halpern or David Arkenstone could be perfect if you're running companies that focus on yoga, massage, or Eastern medicine.
- American, a country playlist featuring Kenny Chesney, Blake Shelton, or Brad Paisley could be just right.
Licensing Is Vital
Once you've settled on your music, you'll need to find a vendor that can support you on an enterprise basis. Each time you play a song in one of your locations, you need to pay a fee to the copyright holders of that song. Each time you don't pay for that right to play, you could get hit with a fee. Playing music without a license could cause you to rack up such high fees that you'll go out of business.
We can help. At Cloud Cover Music, we can help you choose the right music for your business.
We've negotiated contracts with the major copyright holders of music, so you'll be able to play the music you want without worrying about fees or lawsuits. Our interface is easy to use, so you won't have to spend a lot of time training employees. And we can get you set up in minutes. Contact us to find out more.
- Global Survey of C-Suite: Recession Fears Fade, but Talent Concerns Remain. (January 2018). The Conference Board.
- Brand Equality, Brand Loyalty, and Consumer Satisfaction. (July 2011). Annals of Tourism Research.
- Your Most Pressing Management Concerns: What You've Told Us. (November 2012). Harvard Business Review.
- 5 Ways to Maintain Brand Consistency as you Grow Your Business. (June 2017). Forbes.
- Music Congruency in a Service Setting: The Mediating Role of Emotional and Cognitive Responses. (January 2011). Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services.