Music has the power to move you, both physically and emotionally. There have been a number of studies that confirm how music affects us on a neurological level. It can shape our perception of reality, influence our behaviour and impact our psychology.
We’ve all experienced how music can put us in a better mood. We play fast-tempo music at full blast to get us pumped up while powering through our workout routine. Soothing melodies and lullabies are sung to fussy babies before bedtime. Some people prefer rage crying along to 80’s rock ballads as a way to get over a broken heart.
There’s Always Something Playing in the Background
The powerful effect music has on our state of mind should not be disregarded too easily. Its influence on the human psyche certainly doesn’t go unnoticed by adept marketers, commercial retail bosses, event organisers and casino executives. Background music plays an important role in influencing consumer behaviour and we consume much more of it than we are aware of.
Whether you’re sitting at the Blackjack table at a casino, waiting in the reception room of your doctor’s office, walking down the aisle at a grocery store, or simply taking the elevator up to the next floor – you’ll most likely find music playing in the background. Research has shown that different types of music played within a specific environment have an impact on behaviour. It can spur us on to move through a space faster, make us spend more money, encourage us to linger longer and even change our perception of how long we’ve spent waiting in line.
Music in Casinos
Music is an important psychological tool that is used throughout casinos. It is primarily used to create a certain atmosphere, or to maintain a mood. The objective of the music is to make patrons feel as relaxed and comfortable as possible during the gambling experience, so that they spend longer periods of time playing their favourite casino games. The more time one spends enjoying their experience at the casino, the likelihood of them spending more money ultimately increases.
The music played in casinos can either amplify gambling behaviour into a fast-paced frenzy or lull patrons into a soothing sense of comfort that makes them forget about time altogether. It’s not just used in land based casinos either, the soundtracks that accompany online casino games have also been given plenty of thought, and are used to great effect.
Smooth Jams and Low-tempo Music
Casinos can be quite loud and boisterous places. There are flashing lights, ringing bells and sirens going off as another slot machine hits a jackpot. Then there are crowds of enthusiastic gamblers yelling excitedly as they watch the ball spin around the Roulette wheel. You’ll hear congratulatory choruses and the obligatory tirade of some drunken punter who found himself on the wrong side of Lady Luck. It’s an assault on the senses and can get a bit chaotic at times, even for the most seasoned gambler.
To combat this and offset the insanity, casinos pump soft, low-tempo music to soothe you into a relaxed state. The psychology behind this is that when patrons feel comfortable and relaxed they will stay at the casino longer. The longer you play, the more the house edge shifts towards the casino.
One study found that players who listened to low-tempo music showed a heightened persistence in gambling. They took their time when placing bets and placed a larger number of bets than usual.
Fast-Paced Beats and Up-tempo Music
There is also a place for fast-paced and up-tempo music in casinos. It amplifies gambling behaviour by creating an exciting ambiance that is filled with triumphant energy and celebratory sounds. One study found that while listening to fast music, the gambling behaviour displayed became more intense and bets were made at a much more rapid pace.
Now you know how casinos use music to create a specific mood, why not put the theory to the test and see what different songs do to your playing style?