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The holiday season is an opportunity for brands to grow revenue and experiment with creative experiences, and that is the case more than ever this year.
At AnyRoad, we’re excited to see the unique ideas brands come up with! If you haven’t already, it’s important to start planning now to create engaging experiences for consumers to enjoy, because before you know it, holiday music and decorations will be here.
We’ve outlined five tips below which might help you improve revenue and engagement over the holidays.
1 - Gift Certificates: These are more popular around the holidays, as guests love to give experiences to their families and friends. In fact, we consistently see a 20x increase in gift certificate sales from October to December for all our customers using gift certificates. We updated our policies this spring so that partners now receive revenue from a gift certificate sale as soon as the sale goes through, rather than when the gift certificate is redeemed.
- Be sure to keep any 2021 pricing changes in mind — you don’t want to upset guests by having to charge them additionally after their gift certificates are applied.
2 - Online Experiences: Our partners have been seeing success with the online format for experiences. In fact, 4 in 5 brands using data to improve their experiences yield higher guest satisfaction for online experiences than in-person experiences, regardless of the price of the experience. Here are some ideas that would work especially well for holiday:
- Private Group Holiday Parties: As corporate offices around the country are shut down, teams are looking for ways to celebrate from a distance. Some of our partners are hosting large private virtual events, such as online tastings and classes. These are often premium-priced experiences with guaranteed registration numbers, requiring little to no marketing. Send a physical item to participants ahead of time to help strengthen their connection to your brand.
- Special Release Celebrations: Many of our partners have special releases or special announcements during the holidays. Make a celebration out of these moments! Host a sampling of your special holiday product, or teach a special class that uses your new product.
- Public Fireside Chats: The fireside chat format works best when a brand or subject matter expert like a master distiller openly and honestly answers questions about their experiences. Creating intimacy with the audience is key, and can be done through the careful selection of questions by a moderator.
3 - Discount Codes: Leverage discount codes on shopping holidays to drive registrations. AnyRoad customers can have individual or bulk codes created by the Customer Experience team or your Account Manager.
4 - Newsletter: Utilize marketing opt-in lists and waitlists to give a holiday update and to send well wishes to your brand fans. Keep folks engaged with you as they are looking for ways to connect and considering gifts to give to family and friends.
5 - Charitable Events: Wanting to give back during the holidays? Set up charitable events in AnyRoad to engage with your community around a common cause.
Step 1: Evaluate Your Scheduling Software Needs
Before researching online booking systems, evaluating your business needs is essential. After all, you don’t want to overspend on bells and whistles when you only need an online form. For newer events looking to scale, a more sophisticated system might be the goal but not the starting point.
Consider the type and size of your business, the nature of your services, and the volume of transactions you handle. For instance, if you run tours and tastings, you should look at solutions meant for high-volume enterprises that can include add-on shirts, beer steins, and more.
Scheduling Software Flowchart
We made a helpful flowchart to help you decide if you’re ready to invest fully in online bookings or look into a free scheduling app, like Google Forms, as a better starting point.
As someone trying to make smart investment decisions, you don’t want to buy a booking and ticketing solution that doesn’t meet your needs. Use our guided questions to determine where you are in your investment journey.
2. Compare Booking Page Features and Pricing
Booking Page Features
Once you have a clear idea of your business needs, you can compare online booking systems that meet your criteria. Have a list of your most essential needs and what would be nice for you to have. Some features you should consider including on your list include:
- Website integration
- Branded booking page
- Configurability to match your brand
- Payment processing and add-on sales
- Automated reminders
- Automatic data analysis
- Feedback collection and analysis
Rank these on a scale of one to ten, with one being the least important and ten being the most important. That way, if you need to sacrifice a feature for a must-have, you’ll know exactly what you can do away with and what you can’t do without.
Scheduling Software Pricing
Besides shopping around for the right features, factor pricing into your decision. You want to use the scheduling software that gives you the best return on investment. So don't choose to sign up for the most expensive or cheapest option right off the bat — many times, you will need to look into more than just pricing on the surface.