Hark! Regional Christmas Music Favorites Revealed

Largest retailer surveys shoppers to play favorite carols during
biggest shopping day of the year


BENTONVILLE, Ark., November 21, 2006 – Whether “Sleigh Bells” or dogs barking “Jingle Bell Boogie,” Wal-Mart is playing shoppers’ favorite Christmas tunes during the busiest shopping day of the year. The nation’s largest retailer is cranking up the volume on holiday spirit by playing Christmas music in stores specifically tailored to regional choices. Wal-Mart surveyed  shoppers to determine their Christmas music preferences and will play regional favorites in stores on Friday, November 24th.

“We understand that holiday music gets our customers in the Christmas spirit and we’re thrilled to tailor our play lists so they’re listening to their favorites,” said Tom Redwine, Wal-Mart Manager of Radio Operations. “We asked shoppers around the country what music they preferred and we’re excited to respond by playing the holiday selections they requested.  No matter where you live, when you’re in a Wal-Mart store on November 24th, you’ll be listening to Christmas music specifically tailored for your shopping experience!”

Of those surveyed, 77% said that a pleasant shopping experience is important, and the majority of  respondents selected holiday music – over lighting and decorations – as most important in creating a pleasant retail atmosphere. Fifty-seven percent of respondents prefer listening to holiday music that will raise their holiday spirit, and 63% of respondents like traditional holiday music more than other holiday genres.
       
Wal-Mart dialed in on the nine US census regions surveyed and determined what shoppers want to hear when filling their carts with Christmas spirit.  After traditional holiday music, the following were the preferred regional holiday genres that customers will hear in-store on the busiest shopping day of the year: 

  • New Jersey may be home to rockers like Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi, but the Mid Atlantic favors tunes that are a little more upbeat. Forget the 12 days of Christmas…this region wants a top 20 POP countdown filled with tunes from Mariah, Madonna and Clay!
  • New England turns up the volume on its Christmas spirit by rockin’ around the Christmas tree to ROCK music. From the Eagles to Elvis, New England wants to hear some old time rock ‘n roll.
  • Detroit may be the home of Motown, and Cleveland the host of the first rock and roll concert, but the East North Central division prefers a more refined holiday with CLASSICAL music. The trend continues in the Pacific and South Atlantic regions, where the Nutcracker soundtrack and the Boston Pops take center stage.
  • New England may be a little bit rock and roll, but the Mountain and West North Central regions are a “lotta” bit COUNTRY. Santa Claus may be the man of the hour, but Garth Brooks and Clint Black keep these regions in the Christmas spirit.
  • Nashville is country music’s capital, but this Dixieland state (and its East and West South Central neighbors) remembers the reason for the season with CHRISTIAN and GOSPEL music, listening to the angelic voices of Amy Grant and Crystal Lewis.

About Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Every week, more than 176 million customers visit Wal-Mart Stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets, SAM’S Clubs or a subsidiary location in 15 countries around the world. In each of the countries where Wal-Mart operates, the company and its Foundation are committed to a philosophy of operating globally and giving back locally. Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) is proud to support the causes that are important to customers and associates right in their own neighborhoods, and last year gave more than $270 million to these local communities. To learn more, visit www.walmartfacts.com, www.walmart.com or www.walmartfoundation.org.

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