Choosing the right Ticketing/CRM system for your Visitor Attraction
The VE:Forum, in partnership with Indigo and BOP Consulting, has produced this CRM guide to provide a framework for visitor attractions to evaluate their existing system(s), or explore the possibility of investing in a new one. It draws on the experiences of a number of visitor attractions who have recently changed systems or considered changing systems. Alongside the attractions who participated in this project the research also engaged with a number of ticketing / crm providers working across the attractions industry. The insights are the result of a survey and a series of interviews conducted in early 2019. These have been structured into a methodology that will best assist Visitor Attractions wanting to undertake this process.
‘Selecting a new Ticketing/CRM system is not a tick-box exercise that aims to list everything you want the system to do – if you do this you’ll just end up with the same system (and the same problems) that you already have’.
Never has it been more important for visitor attractions to consider how the technology they use can support their businesses to deliver excellence. The days of the Ticketing/CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system being the sole responsibility of the IT or box office team are over – our systems and the data they hold need to be powering the design and delivery of visitor experience throughout our organisations.
However, for so many organisations, the systems they have in place don’t reflect this need. In the VE:Forum 2019 benchmarking study, 80% of Visitor Attractions surveyed had some form of paid-for entry, and 79% operated a membership or annual pass scheme. Yet over a third of respondents didn’t have any form of CRM system for managing visitor relationships, and of those who did, less than half said they were happy with the system they had. A similar proportion had no suitable system to support their fundraising, and yet the majority of respondents were registered charities and needed to increase income from charitable giving.
For so many organisations it comes down to the confidence of those tasked with choosing the right system. Often those who bear this responsibility aren’t ticketing or CRM specialists. They recognise the value and potential of these systems but are overwhelmed with trying to define the required functionality of the system, instead of focussing on the outputs they want to achieve.