Staffordshire, UK: The potential use for iBeacons within attractions is vast, whether you’re looking to increase sales, improve the visitor experience or understand what your visitors do. They offer a whole new level of contextual interaction, but it can be confusing to understand how they work and how you can get practical with their implementation. I’m here to tell you that it can be much easier than you think, and there are compelling reasons to implement them right away! explains Mark Locker, Founder & CEO of Attractions.io.
So what exactly are iBeacons? Put simply, iBeacons are small devices that can be strategically placed around an attraction. As visitors walk past the beacons, their smartphones can pick up the signal in the background and in turn perform actions such as presenting a notification to them. The only thing required is that the user has a compatible phone (all of the latest devices are), and your attraction’s mobile app installed.
Here are five reasons why you should be using them at your attraction:
1. Contextual offers
With iBeacons you can tap into the world of highly contextual, location aware offers that are extremely effective! The Attractions.io platform lets you combine multiple criteria to build super-targeted messaging.
Imagine wanting to send the following notification to your visitors’ smartphone: “Get a free hot drink with any snack from the snack shop!”. Now imagine if this notification was only delivered to users if:
- They were physically walking past the snack shop
- Andthe temperature was below 15°C
- Andit was after 3pm when the shop is quiet
Imagine no more! Our platform makes this not only possible but incredibly easy to do.
2. Better experiences
iBeacons shouldn’t be seen as just a marketing tool and a way to bombard users with offers. After all, when misused people will only disable notifications, or worse, uninstall your app completely. There are many ways that iBeacons can add real value to a visitor’s experience at an attraction.
Something really simple, yet effective, is to place an iBeacon at the entrance point(s) of your attraction. Then, when visitors first enter, greet them with a friendly and unexpected message: “Welcome to Fun Land, Mark!”. This immediately gives a good impression and sets the visitor up for a positive experience.
Taking things a little further, how about using iBeacons to give your visitors some inside knowledge? For example, what if a user was walking within the vicinity of a show that was going to start in 10 minutes time, but they didn’t realise. What if they then received a notification: “The stunt show is nearby and starting in 10 minutes time, would you like to go?”. You guessed it, iBeacons make this possible and it can be like having an attraction expert constantly in your pocket for visitors.
It’s not just about messaging though. If you have a day planner, you can use iBeacons to automatically check-off rides when users have been on them. If you have a scavenger hunt activity, iBeacons can be used to present clues. Perhaps you have something of historic significance, iBeacons can be used to conveniently serve up further information on that, too.
3. Increased repeat visits
Every attraction wants to increase repeat visits, and iBeacons can be used to increase them in a very simple yet effective way. Coupled with a tasty offer, the devices can be placed at the exit of an attraction and be used to sell visitors return visit tickets.
Say it costs £25 to visit your attraction. Now imagine if every guest walking out of your attraction was asked if they wanted to return the following day for £10, or any time this year for £15. Couple this with a very convenient and low-friction way to pay for the offer (such as with your fingerprint via Apple Pay), and it’s a compelling proposition that can drive unrivalled results.
4. Visitor insight
Understanding what visitors are doing at your attraction is incredibly important, but also incredibly difficult to determine. With iBeacons being low cost and easy to maintain, you can install them at each ride, attraction, animal exhibit, food outlet, or anything else you can think of. Then, not only can you utilise them for such things as messaging, but you can also gain reports on how many people are visiting each area.
All of a sudden, it’s clear that 90% of people visit your most popular ride, but only 0.5% of people visit the coffee shop in the far corner of your attraction. You can also analyse these numbers over time to identify trends and use the data to monitor the results of marketing efforts. It’s incredibly powerful!
5. Feedback collection
Feedback is so important for any business, but for those in the leisure industry it’s absolutely vital. Sure, you can send out surveys and place feedback kiosks around your attraction, but what about when you want targeted feedback, fast?
Imagine wanting feedback on a newly opened restaurant. With an iBeacon installed there you can ask visitors who exit what they thought, instantly! You have the power to say: “Collect results from 1,000 visitors who dine at this restaurant”, and then sit back and watch the results roll in.
Whatever the situation, iBeacons can be used to help connect the real world with the digital one.
We’ve worked on mobile apps for over six years and have built a comprehensive mobile messaging platform into our app offering which allows attraction operators to take advantage of all of the things outlined in this article.
Whether you’re a theme park, zoo, aquarium, museum, FEC or other attraction, iBeacons, coupled with a mobile app for your visitors, can deliver real, measurable results. If you’d like to find out more, please get in touch and we’d be delighted to have a chat.
Attractions.io was founded in 2009 following the introduction of Apple’s app store and ever since we’ve been committed to delivering the best mobile experience for attraction visitors and owners alike.
The team works with attractions of all sizes to deliver technology that both improves the visitor experience and delivers real business value that you can measure. They understand the attractions industry and have spent years perfecting their technology which has been tried, tested and proven across leading attractions drawing millions of visitors each year.
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