Millennials have indicated rude staff and impersonalization as reasons for not frequenting nightclubs (along with several others). And I don’t blame them. While nearly every other industry has shifted its focus on providing one-on-one personalized service, nightclubs have fallen behind. And when people are used to being treated like an individual, it’s hard to go somewhere where they’re treated like a number.
This concept of treating each guest as an individual is a huge opportunity for every venue. Nearly everyone has an estimate of how many guests walked through their door on a given night. What they don’t know is who walked through their door. They get people in, serve them, and let them walk away without knowing anything about them.
Follow these three steps to shift your focus back to your customers to give them the experience they want.
Step 1: Capture
Use a digital system to handle every aspect of your door. That way, you’re able to collect data on every type of customer that walks in your venue. And when you connect this to your point of sale system, you’re able to unearth even more valuable information. This means you have a database of all your guests, including their name, contact info, how many times they’ve been to your venue, whether they’re a VIP/guest list/event/general admission customer, how much money they’ve spent, and what their most popular drink purchases are.
Step 2: Personalize
Now think about that. With this information at your disposal at the palm of your hand, you get to treat every guest like an individual. Everyone loves to be recognized. Everyone. And people naturally spend more when they feel appreciated and recognized. Plus, people are accustomed and willing to providing their information. After all, a study conducted by Accenture discovered that 85% of their participants are willing to provide their information to trusted retailers in exchange for targeted, personalized information. Here are a couple examples to do this well:
- A customer is a regular guest list customer. They come to your venue and you see in their profile they’ve visited your venue every week for the past month. Upsell that customer to a VIP table and provide a complimentary bottle of champagne as a thank you. This simple gesture is perceived by the guest as a premium, highly personalized level of service. It shows him how much he is valued, and entices him to stay longer, spend more, bring more of his friends, and come back more often. This is how you organically build loyalty.
- You’re hosting an event. You’ve hosted events in the past and used your digital system to build your database. You segment your customer list into a group of people who attended a similar event in the past that spent more than $200 while at the event. Send that group an exclusive invitation to your event before you release it to the rest of the public. They’ll feel like insiders and will naturally establish a deeper connection with your venue. You can also give your biggest spender a complimentary ticket to the event because you’ll know you’ll make even more once he/she is at the event.
Step 3: Optimize
The personal treatment you’re able to offer will provide your guests with a better experience, making them more loyal and more likely to refer friends to your venue. And now that everything is in one system, you’re able to understand a wholistic picture of who your customers are, which marketing efforts get them through your door, and which types of experiences bring the biggest results. This allows you to stop doing the things that don’t work and optimize the ones that do.
Treating guests like the individuals they are and catering your experience to their needs isn’t hard. All it takes is a system that captures all your information in one place, your staff to use that system so it automatically pulls necessary information on the guests walking through your door, and your ability to execute on providing that exclusive experience. It’s the little things that make the biggest difference to your guests and brings the biggest dollar to you.
Whitney Larson is the president and director of marketing at Vēmos. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the form below.