The 2018 Voice of the Visitor results found that attraction visitors were overall very satisfied in 2017. U.S. attractions’ strengths are that they have friendly staff, provide unique experiences and offer something that is both fun and educational.
But unmet needs exist as well. These are things considered important to attraction visitors, but satisfaction is lower than average. The biggest unmet needs across the industry are: more variety, more discounts, fresh experiences and new types of attractions. These issues are among the underlying cause of declining repeat visitation among attractions.
And as we all know, the antidote to low repeatability is the addition of something new that is relevant, compelling, differentiated and shareworthy.
H2R has four tried and true guidelines for adding something new:
- Choose “New” Wisely. Collaborate with your visitors. Invest in research that shares potential new ideas with visitors and prospects, and have them tell you which they are most likely to visit. H2R has conducted hundreds of concept studies and has found that consumers are amazingly accurate at reacting to the ideas you share with them.
- Remember New Doesn’t Equal Expensive. It may, but it doesn’t have to. The “new” could be hardware like exhibits, rides, restaurants or theaters. Or, it could be software like new programming, shows, events or tours. Or, you could simply reposition what you already have (a coaster seat turned backwards, new aspect to a tour, etc.).
- Have Context. Don’t just identify the best idea of the lot. It is possible than none of the ideas will help generate incremental visitation. It is wise to ensure your new marketing hook is viable relative to industry norms. H2R has the largest library of proprietary industry norms for hardware, software and new programming. When investing in something new, make sure you get it right the first time.
- Conduct a Post-Mortem Evaluation. After investing in something new, follow-up in a manner that informs the process for the future. If attendance goes up, don’t just assume the new experience caused it—or vice versa. There are far too many variables that impact visitation to assume it can all boil down to one new guest experience. H2R developed a Marketing Hook Evaluation Model designed to define how much of your attendance was incremental—above and beyond what you would have generated had you not added the new guest experience. It is easy to do and can be employed in your own Voice of the Visitor surveys.
If your attraction is considering adding something new, contact us today to see how H2R can help you choose the right experience for your visitors. From Concept Studies to Post-Mortem Evaluation, we have the experience and tools to help your attraction succeed.