Direct to Consumer

How can D2C e-commerce protect theme parks from the pandemic?

How could Direct-to-Consumer e-commerce protect amusement parks from the pandemic?

The shift to D2C (Direct-To-Consumer) is a strategic move that has been crucial for companies in various sectors since the outbreak of the pandemic.

Adapt or perish. Wouldn't that have been a great fortune biscuit for what 2020 had in store? In the world of leisure and attractionsThere are currently those who are not quite ready to digest it, desperately waiting for things to get back to normal. And then there are those who, on the contrary, are looking forward and see these difficult times as an opportunity. A chance to reinvent themselves and work on a future-proof transformation of their business.

Of course, with the unprecedented changes and developments we have seen this year due to the pandemicThis is easier said than done.

leisure park

However, companies have managed to come together, collaborate and think creatively more than ever before. More importantly, they have had to fundamentally transform the way they operate and their businesses in order to survive.

Achieving this overnight, especially in a large-scale traditional sector that has no inherent technological DNA, is no mean feat. Nevertheless, some companies have emerged stronger from this pandemic.

What is their secret?

It would be narrow-minded to attribute the problem to a single factor. There are many factors involved. Having a forward-looking team, the right organisational and technological resources, the right structure and flexibility, or proactively making informed decisions through accurate forecasting - all help.

This new approach to e-commerce, which is slowly developing, is revolutionising the way businesses relate to their customers and is based on the simple principle of selling directly to customers.

This is a factor that surprisingly few people in the sector talk about - making it a well-kept secret that I would like to reveal here so that more people of leisure businesses and attractions start to take advantage of it.

This new approach to e-commerce, which is slowly developing, is revolutionising the way in which companies build relationships with their customers. It is based on the simple principle of selling directly, through their own channels, rather than relying on third-party resellers or distributors. It is about cutting out the middleman.

The advantage of a D2C approach

The major advantage of this D2C approach can be summed up in a two-syllable word: Data.

A word that may make some leisure managers instinctively wince with reluctance. For many, 'data' is just a buzzword. There is a lot of talk about it, but no clear idea of what it is. We know it is there and we know it is being used. But we don't know exactly how.

leisure data

All companies are therefore turning to the Internet and jumping on the e-commerce bandwagon. And this has enormous implications. Not only because consumer behaviour has changed radically, but above all because the relationship with the customer has completely changed.

Now this relationship leaves a trail. This means that these online transactions and interactions bring with them extremely valuable data.

By switching to D2C, leisure and attraction sites can capitalise on this data to achieve the following benefits:

- Regain full control of their customer relationships and data.
- Better understand their customers and tailor communications and experiences accordingly.
- Implement next-level personalisation strategies to increase customer loyalty and conversions.
- Better influence purchase intent at every touchpoint in the customer journey and digital experience.
- But most of all, having continuous inbound data streams means having greater knowledge of their audiences. This creates endless opportunities to learn, improve and grow your business.

All of this means that, in the face of any future crisisIn the face of this pandemic, and even through what remains of it, the fate of your leisure brand is in your hands. Managing these data streams allows you to use them to respond in a timely manner. It makes you agile.

The transition to D2C

It is not surprising that brands such as Heinz, Nike or Lindt, which previously favoured sales through traditional channels and resellers, have also moved quickly and strategically away from their old systems and into this direct, data-driven approach to e-commerce.

Clearly, more and more brands are beginning to realise the enticing benefits of D2C.

Among other things, D2C brands succeed in narrowing consumer choice, enhancing their brand reputation, clarifying their value proposition and streamlining their customers' experience. The rewards in terms of opportunities for innovation, creating more meaningful connections and stronger relationships with customers are endless.

In the end, the Direct to Consumer is exactly that: serving your customers directly while improving their experience, thanks to information extracted from their data.

This e-commerce model is becoming increasingly popular. But it still has a long way to go in the world of leisure and attractions. It can therefore offer an interesting competitive advantage to companies that decide to consider its early adoption. After all, the world has already moved online. So the leisure world will have no choice but to follow suit.

Instead of leaving the fate of their brand in the hands of retailers and third parties who will charge high fees, throw away ticket prices and take over their data, leisure brands can choose to protect themselves in the long term by taking back control and, with it, the fate of their brand.

 This article is translated and adapted from the article How D2C eCommerce can protect leisure brands from the pandemic written by Bernard Kochen for the editorial staff of Previous.

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Sophia Baladi

Sophia Baladi

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Solène Jimenez

Would you like to carry out a data & CDM diagnosis of your organisation? Take advantage of 30 minutes of free consulting by reserving your time.

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