Music Licensing for Bars, Cafeterias & Pubs
Holding a degree in Business Administration and Programming, Pablo established Legis Music in 2016. With a focus on the royalty-free music industry, he has contributed extensively to the field, authoring over 150 articles on various aspects of music licensing. His efforts have been instrumental in developing one of the most straightforward and liberal music licensing frameworks available today.
If the existence of pubs in the world is nothing new, (there were already taverns in Middle Ages Greece!) neither is the importance of background music in this type of business: you’ve probably seen the typical medieval movie in which minstrels sing or some western in which you hear music from a pianola, while customers have a good time.
Since then, technology has evolved, but not human behavior.
Where can you get the background music for your bar, pub, or cafeteria?
|SOUNDTRACK YOUR BRAND||Well-known and famous songs||$34.99/month per location|
|CLOUD COVER MUSIC||Well-known and famous songs||From $16.95/month per location|
As you probably already know, most of the songs in the world are protected by so-called copyrights.
This means that to put music in your business you need either the authorization of the record company that owns the music or the corresponding use license.
In most countries, there is an organization (named P.R.O.) in charge of ensuring that music is used in a legal way by businesses, but these organizations are often lagging behind companies like Soundtrack Your Brand or Cloud Cover Music, which also offer legal solutions for physical premises owners.
In the U.S., these are the companies responsible for ensuring the proper use of music in any physical business.
Therefore, if you are using music for commercial purposes without any kind of license and any they realize that in one of the many routine checks they make, you’re at risk of being sued in federal court – which isn’t cheap.
In order to avoid these fines, they, of course, offer a series of licenses depending on the type of business you manage. Which are not cheap as well!
If you live outside the United States, there will be other Performance Rights Organization companies (PRO’s) that collect these royalties for the musicians.
What alternatives do we have?
Well, thankfully there’s a bunch of companies that give us the possibility to not only use any background music that we need -with proper licensing so we don’t have to pay to these PRO’s- but also online tools to manage it and support 24/7.
Let’s review the best one:
As you’ve probably could guess, PRO prices can be somewhat abusive and, in some cases, even prohibitive.
That’s why I’ll tell you about one of the best platforms when it comes to streaming music licensing.
This platform is called Soundtrack Your Brand and offers music that can be used for commercial purposes in a completely legal way, so you never have to worry about possible routine inspections again.
In addition, their playlists are automatically updated, which means less saturation of customers and workers when listening to music, as the songs are constantly changing.
You also have the ability to schedule music by day and time, import your favorite playlists from Spotify and even use it remotely.
What are their prices?
The price of Soundtrack Your Brand does not depend on any external factor like the surface of the premises.
The price is always $34.99 per month per establishment.
In addition, if you want to try the service before hiring it offers a free month without any commitment.
But before you go ahead and make your decision, let me tell you something: It’s important for you to know that Soundtrack Your Brand usually offers all the rights to the music tracks they have available.
However, in some countries -including the United Kingdom or Australia- it is necessary to acquire the public communication license through the record labels, music publishers, and / or local collection societies in order to use Soundtrack Your Brand legally.
How to manage the sound environment?
One of the things you should keep in mind when managing the music in your bar is the volume.
I’m sure you’ve experienced the typical situation in which you enter an establishment and the music is so loud that it even annoys and then causes a counterproductive effect…
In addition, usually when people enter a bar to drink or eat something, they are oftentimes accompanied, and the fact of having very loud music could be a great obstacle when establishing conversations.
Let’s not forget that a bar is often a meeting point. When it comes to choosing one type of music or another, it depends on the strategy you want to follow.
Generally speaking, there are three main strategies:
- Use always different kinds of music. 2. Always choose the same musical genre. 3. Alternate different styles of music depending on the day.
If you choose to use a variety of music to try to reach a greater number of people, you should keep in mind that it is better if the songs you choose are not too deeply rooted in a particular genre.
For example, if you want to play a Rock’n’Roll song, it’s better to choose a song that is located between this genre and Pop, rather than one that is 100% recognized as Rock.
If, on the other hand, you prefer to use the same musical genre every day to always attract the same type of customer, you will be trying to build a kind of themed bar.
And, as you know, in theme bars, not only the music is important, but also the decoration of the place, the light, the waiters’ clothes, the type of food, the content offered by TV, and so on.
All of these aspects are very important in any type of bar, although it is perhaps in these establishments that greater coherence is required.
One of the most famous themed bars is, for example, the Hard Rock Café, which has grown to the point of creating a chain present in the most important cities in the world.
Another themed bar, in this case, related to the world of sport, would be the NBA Café Barcelona, located in the Catalan town and which is also very successful.
Finally, you have the possibility of alternating different styles of music depending on the day of the week, thus creating, instead of theme bars, themed days.
This option is very valid since you will be able to get all kinds of clients, although distributed on different days of the week, a thing that can help you enormously to make profitable to the maximum each one of the days.
If this option is highly recommended in terms of results, is also one of the most complicated to manage, since we remember that the decoration, light, clothing of waiters… must be in perfect tune with the music, otherwise, the strategy may not work.
It is also the most expensive at first at an economic level, as it can involve having different decorative elements, uniforms, etc. for each day of the week.
Therefore, the choice of one strategy or another will depend not only on your objectives and business idea but also on your budget.
Why put music in your establishment?
One of the main reasons why you should use background music refers a little to the advertising world since is:
- A fundamental element to have good positioning in your client’s mind. - A strong and solid brand image.
Both are key elements, not only in attracting new customers but also in keeping existing ones and building their loyalty.
In addition, music has an unimaginable ability to influence people’s emotions.
Therefore, through its use, you will be able to relax your customers in case they come with a not very good attitude or to encourage and activate them in case they come with a predisposition to have a good time.
Hence the importance, not only of the type of customer, the day of the week and the time but also of the type of business you have:
- Bar: meeting point where drinks and meals are served, always accompanied by music and/or activities. - Cafeteria: an establishment where you usually spend less time, since, in theory, it is a business that, as its name suggests, is destined to offer coffee to its customers.
However, the diversification of its offer has meant that it can often be confused with the concept of a bar.
Usually, the time spent by customers in these establishments is less than in bars, since in the latter case the commands tend to be larger and therefore tend to require more time to consume them.
- Tavern: business very similar to a bar, but with a more informal character. - Pub: they usually open at night and tend to serve alcoholic beverages. - Restaurant: Just as other establishments offer meals and drinks almost all day, restaurants only offer lunches and dinners. In fact, we wrote a complete article about music for restaurants.
In fact, in this kind of business, the good preparation of meals and dishes is your main priority.
As we said before, music helps to build a strong brand image and consequently also helps to attract a particular type of customer to your establishment.
So first you have to think about which customer you want for your store and then you have to think about the music.
For example, if you want to make your bar a meeting point for motorcyclists, perhaps the ideal would be to opt for active musical genres, such as Rock n Roll.
In addition, also related to the time that the client spends on the premises, music is ideal to make the clients feel comfortable and the more comfortable they feel, the more time they will spend in the establishment and the more probabilities of return there will be.
Music is also capable of increasing the productivity of workers.
The more rhythmic the chosen music, the faster the cooks will go to prepare the dishes and the sooner the waiters will also wait on the tables. In the case of waiters, it also influences their willingness to work.
The more cheerful the music, the better their attitude when it comes to serving customers and, consequently, the greater the predisposition, the better the customer’s perception and the greater the likelihood of return.
The importance of music in bars is more than clear.
You only need to look at the number of years that this sound element has been flooding the environments of these types of establishments.
No matter the reason why you want to put background music in your establishment, what really matters is that you use it, otherwise you will be wasting a great opportunity to generate more income, which, in short, is the ‘raison d’être’ of any business.
It is also very important to remember that the fact of using music can mean economic fines or even being sued if not done properly, so if you want to earn money but do it correctly and legally, it is best to use music with their respective licenses.
Why you can trust Legis Music
We offer comprehensive and expertly information about music licensing since 2016.
The website regularly updates its content to reflect the latest changes in music law, ensuring accurate information.
Our dedication to clarity and accuracy in explaining music rights and licensing issues builds trust among musicians, producers, and clients.