by Dennis Conrad
January 1, 2011
'I Am Your Customer'
I am your casino customer. I haven’t been visiting your casino as often in recent days. You know, that economy thing. And when I do stop by I haven’t been able to play as long, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t wanted to. It’s just that I’m watching my budget. I’m not visiting your competitors as much either, but, boy, have they been bombarding me with juicy offers. It makes me wonder why you haven’t done the same and showed me a little love in this recession. After all, you are my favorite casino.
I am your casino customer. I visit you to get away from it all for a few hours, and that’s especially important for me in these difficult times. Your employees have always made me feel welcome, always made me feel they appreciate my business (and my tips). Except now I see fewer of them, and I hear them complain about being short-handed and having pay raises frozen and not getting many “attaboys” these days. It sure seems to me that your employees should be the last thing to neglect in tough times.
I am your casino customer. I’ve been looking for a little extra value from you, but it seems I just get nicked a little more everywhere I turn. My favorite penny slots seem a little tighter, and I can’t even find my favorite 5-cent video poker games any more. Your great prime rib special in the coffee shop now costs two bucks more, and it’s extra for the baked potato. And I can’t believe you’re serving my complimentary coffee on the casino floor in a smaller cup.
I am your casino customer. In times like these I would like to feel just a little more special when I visit you. But that is hard when I see all of those buses you are now bringing in and watch those bus customers receive their $10 of free play and their $2 buffet coupon while they clog up the players club booth. Hey, what about me?
And it’s hard to feel special when you’ve taken away my VIP parking privileges and no longer let me use the “Invited Guest” line at the buffet. I know I’ve been gambling a little less, but those perks don’t even cost you any money.
I am your casino customer. I liked many of the concerts you used to hold every few weeks or so. But now they’re every few months, and many of the entertainers are names I don’t recognize. And concert nights now seem to attract a younger and tougher, tattooed crowd, and they don’t seem to stick around to gamble after the show. That seems pretty stupid. I would think you’d want to draw in more casino players like me with your entertainment. And, by the way, that “King of the Cage” event you had, I stayed away that night, that booze and brawling crowd was a little too scary for me.
I am your casino customer. I see that you are now using e-mail to send me information and casino offers. I think that is a good idea as e-mail is now my preferred form of communication. But you might try working a little harder at sending me offers that I’m actually interested in. I’ve never used your hotel spa. I don’t play in blackjack tournaments. And I hate gourmet food. So don’t waste your time enticing me with any of that. You should know by now that I really want some free slot play and a free buffet now and then, especially on Lobster Night.
I am your casino customer. Your casino really is my favorite — it’s close to my home, it’s clean, most of your employees are nice, and the place has a nice buzz to it. Many of my friends say the same thing. In fact, we’d be glad to share our opinions with you, just because we like you so much, and we want to make our favorite casino even better. But no one has even asked me for my opinion or asked me to sit in on one of those focus group kind of things. I’ve heard maybe some of your hotel guests get to fill out a questionnaire now and then, but it seems you are ignoring your local bread-and-butter folks.
Yes, I am your casino customer. I like you. I’ve been loyal for a long time. And I do understand that this recession has been hard on all of us, including your business. I guess I’m just looking for a little more love from you, a little acknowledgement that I mean something more to you than the 500 bucks a month I spend with you.
Please don’t make me go back to bowling for my evening entertainment. But I’ll be honest, that thought has been sounding a little better nowadays.
Dennis Conrad is the president and chief Relationship Officer of Raving Consulting Company, a full service marketing company specializing in assisting gaming organizations. He can be reached at (775) 329-7864. Visit Raving’s Web site at www.ravingconsulting.com.
Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to the magazine.