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Why the relentless Xmas background music at retailers this season is not by accident

Published December 16, 2011 11:12 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

According to Luke's Biblical account, there was music at the first Christmas, when heavenly angels arrived to sing Jesus' praises while the infant was dressed in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.In the centuries since, music has remained an important element of Christmas celebrations.And, for better or worse, holiday music playing in stores has become an important part of retailers' plans to entice you to buy more presents.As business schools across the country turn to studies of consumer behavior, entrepreneurs of tomorrow have learned that when you add music to the retail experience, more products are purchased.It's simple, when you think about it: Getting into the holiday spirit, to businesses, means getting into the shopping spirit.One of the most unsettling things about retail music is that most shoppers aren't even aware that they're being controlled.That's by design, says Kurt Mortensen, a Provo-based author who has spent two decades researching subconscious triggers and how they affect our behavior."For the use of music to be effective, customers can't really be aware of it," he says. "The music should not be overpowering; rather, it should merely be an atmospheric presence."

For the rest of my story, go to: http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/entertainment/53087062-81/music-says-christmas-shoppers.html.csp