4 Creative Ways To Keep Your Customers Close via Digital Channels
The constant searching, scrolling, reading and researching while trying to come up with viable solutions can be something that takes up a lot of your time at the moment, and we get you. Going through this uncertainty is something that we understand as we experience as well. That’s why we’ve learnt how to embrace it and we want to spread a positive message across the FEC community.
As the saying desperate times call for desperate methods goes, we’re adding a creative twist to it – challenging times call for fun, engaging activities that are both business-oriented and interesting!
That’s why we came up with awesome ideas you can start implementing for your business starting now! Here are four creative ways you can engage with your community, while practicing social distancing.
Don't Give Up on Your Customers
- Your community matters and staying in touch is the best thing you can do right now.
Keep in mind that businesses that bring hope to people (that are currently at home, distressed and worried) by keeping them connected, educated and informed are those who have the best return on the market – because they were part of a community they never thought they needed.
- Focus on what you know best.
Is making people laugh the strongest trait your center has? Focus on that! Is education your best feature? Create content on that subject. Everything is flexible, possible and easy to do as long as you keep the promise you made to your customers?
- We’re sure care is an important core-value your business has.
You care for your visitors. When they enter your center, you want them to be satisfied with everything that’s going on: from the games they’re playing, the food they’re eating to the laughter they’re sharing. That’s why you have to continue with recreating (this time online) that particular atmosphere during these tough times.
BRINGING A SENSE OF CLOSENESS IS THE KEY.
Creating a “breathing-space” through social distancing should only connect people more through alternative methods such as social media, video content, e-mail or chat platforms.
Go Where Your Clients Are
Courage to listen to your audience and constantly looking to integrate alternatives that are both useful and entertaining to your customers is the way to to look at things right now. Even though everyone is spending more time on the web, this doesn’t mean they’re all in the same place. Find where your clients are on social media platforms.
YOUR SUCCESS RESTS ON THE CONSTANT CHALLENGE TO ADAPT.
Start by taking some notes that will answer these two following questions: who’s my audience and what age groups are entering in my FEC on a daily basis? After that, depending on how many categories you have listed, you’ll have to approach things differently according to each case.
Let’s break it down:
- Generation Z
When it comes to Generation Z (born after 1997 and comprising 27% of the US population), you have plenty of alternatives you can choose out from. Even though they are the generation that already spends most of their time online, they are now looking for more creative entertainment options.
Entering your FEC meant more than just playing a variety of games. It was all about how connected they were with each other. About the fun they had and the media shared on their socials. That’s why your approach should be genuine as well as recognizable
For example, Tik Tok has now taken off globally with millions of people and it is mostly appealing to Generation Z. You can choose this platform to create funny challenges, share videos of certain activities (arcades, Virtual Reality). Make sure to use hashtags and reply to comments to fully engage with your audience. Here is a content example for your inspiration – A Family Entertainment Center from Louisiana is posting creative content which gathered up to 12k followers and almost 800k likes. More inspiration here.
You can also opt for a social platform such as Instagram, where you can start up a conversation with them via Stories (while increasing your brand awareness). Challenge them to post the funniest picture they’ve taken at your center or share their greatest experience they’ve had. People are currently reminiscing about how fun it used to be when they were able to spend time outside, and you should use that to your advantage.
When it comes to this audience, it is probably the most demanding one. While parents are working from home and children are out of school, there is a high request on activities parents can do with their kids to keep them engaged (and active).Even though the list of content ideas is generous we recommend analyzing your FEC’s strengths and think about what children and parents would love the most. Here is how other FECs have approached this:
- Coloring Books – A lot of FECs are implementing this in their online strategy, like Hersheypark. You can simply illustrate your center while engaging children in fun activities and keep them busy.
- Birthday in a box – Sending a “birthday box” to all the kids that were supposed to celebrate their birthdays at your FEC in this period of time. Another great idea is organizing a virtual birthday, where you can arrange a party for the birthday boy or girl and have it streamed on Facebook Live or Instagram. This would only strengthen your community as people from all around the country could gather and sing “Happy Birthday”.
- At home exercises – In comparison with how active children used to be at your entertainment center, staying at home can get a bit dull for them especially if they don’t have any type of physical activity going on. Now you can show them what home entertainment means. Find ways for them to enjoy physical exercises in a creative video/Facebook posts or a live stream! Their parents will be grateful as well.
- Live Videos from your center.
- Online Quizzes and use redemption tickets as prizes to guarantee customer turnover
- Presentation Videos - Now it's your time to show your center! When guests come and visit you, they don't usually get the chance to analyze all the interesting details you have laying around, so now it's your time to present everything you want to highlight! See this lovely example made by our friends at Altitude 1291.
One great example of a FEC that’s implementing a lot of fun activities while practicing social-distancing is Urban Air Adventure Park that released a new campaign called Urban Air At Home. They have a lot of fun things to enjoy from home – coloring sheets, photo comparisons, words finder and so many more so that their customers are engaged within their community.
Whatever you choose to do, make sure you stay authentic to your brand while getting inspired by other fellow Family Entertainment Centers. Check what social media platforms work best for this segment of your audience! What we’ve noticed is that families engage the most with businesses over Facebook and their official website.
Implement a Gift-Card Option
Keep in mind that people who crossed your doorsteps were those who loved your brand and business. That’s why they want to help you out - we’re sure of that. One creative way of doing so is offering them a chance to buy gift-card options in advance for when your center reopens. This is a simple method, as it doesn’t have any time constraint and can be used anytime by you customers. Some examples in this way can be found at Palasad South or Space Entertainment Center
Use This Time To Restructure
You can do whatever you have on your to-do list. Or you can work on your online strategy – redo your website, take some professional pictures or rewrite your captions!
NOW IT'S THE TIME TO DO THE THINGS YOU ALWAYS SAID THERE ISN'T ENOUGH TIME FOR.
Moreover, you should check up on your lease plan. As your center is currently shut down, talk to your landlord about your options, maybe you can negotiate regarding postponing or reducing rent payments.
Also, see if you can get a CARES - Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act loan by the SBA. This will help entrepreneurs keep paying their employees while the business is forced to be closed with Paycheck Protection Loans (PPL). See more about this here.
All in all, we’re sure this situation will eventually come to an end. As we can’t control the flow of our businesses and how things unfold, we recommend you focusing on the things you can do and on the positive impact your actions will have upon your community.
Stay safe! 😀