Given global trends, how should attractions best reinvest in themselves to ensure maximum growth?
David Camp, D&J International Consulting: Be strategic
Reinvestment is critical for attractions just to maintain a competitive position. This is often the toughest concept for people outside the industry to understand. Without ongoing reinvestment attendance levels to an attraction will decline, so attraction operators need to allocate 5-10% of their income for core reinvestment.
To grow, attractions need to invest more than this; but just throwing money at an attraction without a sound understanding of the product and the audience and without a supporting marketing campaign will not work, as Six Flags discovered in Europe at the turn of the century.
Investment at parks like Europa Park (Arthur & the Invisibles), PortAventura (SesamoAventura) and Puy du Fou (Knights of the Round Table) have been made after extensive research and with a deep understanding of their audiences. These are investments to grow and maintain visitor volumes. For stable long-term growth, investment needs to be focused and targeted to complement the existing offers, broaden the appeal, reach new audiences and draw guests back to the parks time and again.