The Daily Rail: Does music effect a guest's beer drinking experience?

Today's Specials


If you've worked long hours in a bar, you've definitely met some pretty interesting people. Some of them might even feel a bit alien to you…

#SERVERPROBS (Sponsored by Upserve)

Why it’s important to you: These are 10 things all servers know to be self-evident… but let’s have fun and list them anyways!

Nearly 50% of U.S. adults have worked in the restaurant industry at least once in their life. Working in a restaurant has its perks, but just like any other job, it also has things that make us tick. Here are 10 of these things.


Why it’s important to you: The way fans interact with their favorite sports is changing and it’s up to you to change with it.

In a recent study by NewsWhip, the WWE (of all sports) was the most successful in its activities on Facebook. In terms of total interactions, the WWE outpaced their nearest competitor, the NBA, by over 58 million transactions and more than doubled the NFL. The irony is that their signature Pay Per View products aren’t even available on DIRECTV anymore. The lesson here is clearly fans of the WWE are committed and involved with their favorite pastime. It stands to reason that from a marketing perspective, the WWE is a ripe target for your bar. Their free programming is consistently scheduled and easy to build a promotion around, and if you want their PPV, it’s available via alternate content services like Roku.


Why it’s important to you: Really, a Nerd Barbie, who doesn’t think that is hysterical?

There has been ample criticism for the Mattel line of dolls for creating body shame and representing women as objects only, but that has been changing over the past several years. Yesterday Mattel released the newest in their Barbie collection, Game Developer Barbie. That’s right, Nerd Barbie has finally arrived. She comes complete with laptop and real programming skills. In fact, there is actual code displayed on her computer. It’s nice to see Mattel representing women as capable, creative and even geeky sometimes. Our industry has always been meritocracy, where woman can rise and excel with fewer glass ceiling limits, so we already know girls can do anything.


Why it’s important to you: Taxes on consumption are a regulatory nuisance, but not necessarily bad for business.

With the approval of a "sugary drink" tax, Philadelphia becomes the first major city in the US to approve levying this type of consumption tax. The measure is attached to programs that help with Pre-K education, especially in Philly’s poorest neighborhoods. However, there doubts are about how well this will work. The tax is collected from the distributor and is $0.015 per ounce, which means a 12 oz soda will now be taxed an additional $0.18. It is believed that Philadelphia succeeded in approving this tax, where New York City failed, by tying it to education and not an effort to adjust consumer behavior.

Our industry is already under regulatory pressure with new FDA guidelines requiring nutritional information be included on menus and other restrictive regulation is not a welcome development. Of course, this tax isn’t an additional administrative burden like the FDA rules, since the tax is levied before you receive the product for sale. It also applies to diet beverages, but not to unsweetened drinks like coffee or fresh brewed iced tea. It might be time to take a hard look at your soft beverage program and see where you can get ahead of new rules like this by adjusting your focus.


Why it’s important to you: If music improves a guest’s beer drinking experience, let’s make a playlist.

Leave it the Belgians — with their Stella Artois and Trappist brews — to study the effect of music on beer consumption. Vrije Universiteit Brussel did a study of the impact music has on both the perception of flavor in beer and the potency of the alcohol. The long and short: music with higher pitches turned the taste of drinks more sour; deep bass makes beer taste bitter. If this is true, then arguably the music you play could make your beer and food taste better to guests. We obsess about little things in our business, such as lighting, tableware and temperature, so knowing empirically what music to play would feed our obsession. 

Unfortunately, you will have to wait for more intelligence because the study doesn’t give specific music examples and their relative effect. For now, you’ll just have to guess and experiment. Let us know how it goes.

This Week in eSports


Sky and Virgin Media are combining their powers to bring a 24-hour eSports station called Ginx eSports TV. The new station launches on June 23rd and will air in the UK. The station will also be available online through Virgin Media. Ginx eSports events will include live commentary, color analysis and post-match discussions, just like your more traditional sports broadcasts. Question is: Is Ginx pronounced with a G or a J?


Bud Light is looking to cash in big with eSports. The beer company, no stranger to traditional sports advertising, has launched it’s Big Light All-Stars initiative. The program lets competitive gaming fans across the globe to vote for their favorite players. The top voters then become ambassadors of their specific genres under the Bud Light banner. According to Bud Light, the difference between eSports fans and traditional sports fans is “marginal.” Something bars and restaurants should think about.


According to data collected and released by Newzoo’s Steaming Platform Tracker, eSports fans consumed more than 800 million hours of eSports league and event content on Twitch. And that’s just in the past 10 months! That translates into 9,100 years worth of eSports watched in the past 10 months just on Twitch, forget events being aired on Youtube, ESPN and TBS. That’s a lot of content being consumed. What are you doing to tap into this obsession at your venue?