What do UK venues REALLY want from their technology?

Our research discovered some alarming facts!

Overview

A few months back we conducted some research into the world of venues and how they use their technology to help them manage and grow their business.
We didn't specifically set out with any clear idea as to what we would find, we simply wanted to find out what the dynamics are and how venues treat, use and value technology and the subsequent data that it provides.
When I say we didn't really have a clear idea of what we would find, we obviously did have some idea of focus, driven in part by 2 key areas we wanted to find out more about:

  1. Are venues exploring technology to facilitate, speed up and even take over the process completely of venue booking? Were event bookers moving online and were venues following?
  2. How sophisticated were their own venue management systems and therefore before they open up their inventory to the world - literally, have they got their data, systems and processes in order?

I'll cut straight to the chase and give you the basic bones of the answers which, incidentally the detail of which can be found in our eReport.
The answers are:

  1. No
  2. No

Now, this doesn't come as a big shock to Londonlaunch because we work with these types of businesses every day. We talk to venues all day, every day about sales, process, leads, measurement, conversions, reports. And I can tell you now that there's a whole world of confusion out there. This market is growing so quickly it's a bit like holding on to the tiger's tail. Most venues are not even thinking about tomorrow, they just have a stack load of stuff to get done today.

Improve sales conversions

When the average conversion of a lead is 10% AT BEST (probably much less, especially during peak season like Christmas) then it doesn't take a genius to work out that most of the venue's time is spent dealing with enquiries rather than poring over spreadsheets. Reactive sales is a very common job role. Answering phone calls and emails and responding to potential customers' enquiries is a full-time job, even though and as mentioned earlier, 10% conversion would seem to be the norm.

Now, I have to confess that I'm a bit of data geek. I love numbers. I love data. I also have a mantra that says, "Data has a better idea" and it's this premise that leads me to beat this particular drum of helping the industry get better at using data and technology. If you can't measure it, how can you manage it? And if you can't even track it to measure it then holy moly....how on earth are you going to start the process of improving (using data that is)!

Research key findings

That brings me to the key findings of our research and subsequent report.
Only 50% of the market is using technology well enough. And that's by their own admission. The major stumbling block is reporting. They all want better reports so they can make better decisions. And we all know what that means? - Yup - more insightful and relevant data from better systems.
Rubbish in, rubbish out and that leads to disillusionment and a 'revert to type' behaviour and doing what we always used to do - firefight and then count your knees when asked poignant questions in management meetings about the target market, penetration, conversions, competitors, ROI, yield, net profit/contribution etc: All those things that senior management want to know so they can adjust and invest to help fuel growth.

These conversations and these conundrums that venues have day to day are why we conducted the research in the first place and also why we launched the Venue Performance Report in January this year.

We want to help venues improve and to do that, we believe that's it's through the better use of data that will enable venues to do that.

Research, data & insight

It's one of the reasons why we chose to partner with NFS Technology to release these findings (because they have a ton of data and insight) and why we also decided to host an event on the back of our findings. We felt we had some interesting industry insight to share and we wanted to do just that - share it. Feedback from the event would suggest that we have hit upon a sweet spot of interest.
In our last blog about this titled "Why event venues need more focus on sales and marketing data", we looked at the 3 sets of data: Macro, Meso and Micro and how to go about the process of improving your data, systems, processes and subsequently, your business. As I said earlier, I believe data has a better idea.

Get the Report

To read the full report, please register here and we'll send you a copy.
And if you'd like the slides from our event focusing on Digital Transformation then let us know and we'll happily send you those too.

We'd also love to hear from you (in this thread?) if you have an opinion or some feedback as to what you're doing differently and what your results show you.

Tags : Conference, Technology, London Venue