A good idea can make a difference. The lack of a good idea means nothing. As in, nothing changes. As in, I hope the competition doesn’t buy a new idea and move ahead of us. Because without a good idea, we’re standing still. No, that’s not true. In today’s world, standing still is actually moving backwards.
Where are you getting your new ideas?
If you’re like a lot of Indian casinos today, you’re not buying any new ideas. You’re not spending on anything. You’re running with what you got. More than not buying, you are going one step further and investing in the idea of cutting costs, hoping your guests don’t notice that you’re giving them less for their dollar. Guess what — they notice. And that revenue decline that’s not coming back — it’s not all the economy’s doing. It’s partly the economy and partly the decision to give your guests less for their money. Give them less, they will give you less. It’s really that simple.
Am I suggesting you spend money to spend money? No way. Spending smart, yes; spending more money on yesterday’s ideas, no way. But you gotta invest in yourself — even when the economy is tight. Standing still is going backwards.
Here’s a cautionary tale. Someone I know shared an NY Times article analyzing the profitability of a large Northwest Indian casino operation that DOES NOT utilize a modern player-tracking system and the player loyalty marketing tools made possible by that sort of system. The article was very much a “how to do business wrong” sort of piece. The article claims the casino — because they don’t use a modern loyalty database marketing program — is leaving $50 million a year “on the table.” As in, they could make $50 million more if they only installed this $2 million dollar system and engaged in some smart database marketing. Terrible and tragic and amazingly unexplainable, right? I’ve worked in the market before, and so I know the article to be true — and possibly conservative even. A person I know who used to work there says the number is more like $80-100 million. Can you imagine that? Leaving $100 million on the table because… It’s easier to do nothing. Doing nothing is safe. Expensive, but safe.
But what I am suggesting here is not risky. It’s simple advertising principles — a sure and true as physics. Drop a rock off a building, and it falls to the ground. Create advertising that’s interesting, proprietary, and based on an idea that connects with your target audience in a way that creates an emotional connection — that rock will fall.
The simple rational is this: When your casino first opened, you were right to make ads that showcased the casino and all the many things in the building. Now, many years later, everyone knows what’s inside a casino. 99% of your guests have already been to your casino at least once before. So the old idea — showing them what’s in the building — is wrong now. That “show them the stuff” idea was the right launch idea 20 years ago when people didn’t yet know. Now they all know what you have. Now it’s time for an idea that differentiates your casino from the others in the market. Show them difference now, not stuff. Find your difference and up-sell that difference in a way that matters to your guests. Wrap that message about difference in advertising that makes an emotional connection with your audience. Bamm! That’s an idea that’s worth investing in.
This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 at 10:44 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.