MARKETING: More casino pet peeves
by Dennis Conrad
September 26, 2012
I haven’t written about my casino pet peeves in a while. That doesn’t mean
they have magically gone away. In fact, they are pretty insidious—when one pet
peeve seems to get less irritating, another new one seems to pop
I used to think that maybe it was just me with these picky pet peeves, but the last time I wrote about them, I asked readers to share some of their own pet peeves from Casino Land. And boy did they!
Jeff Jorgensen from Fallon, Nev., mentioned casino cocktail servers who take your order and then never return with your drink. Alternatively, he mentioned the cocktail server who does bring the drink, is tipped generously, and then will never leave you alone.
Matthew Kelemen of Foundit.com shared his pet peeves, which included dealers not thanking you for a tip, and also those that lectured you for smoking at a table where smoking is allowed. He also was peeved by “8-ounce drink glasses at $100 minimum tables.”
And then there was Simon Fort of Option 2 Inc., who made me laugh with his pet peeves. They included “announcements over the PA that sound like Charlie Brown’s parents” and “marketing signage that reads like Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth” (even if I had to look that one up). Simon was also half peeved and half amused by “security podiums as the gateway to a good time.”
There were dozens of others who shared their casino pet peeves. So you see, it isn’t just me. Casino customers and executives everywhere experience these pernicious peeves embedded in the gaming experience.
Which makes me feel much better (and less like a whiner) for sharing my newest casino pet peeves.
MY LATEST PET PEEVES
• Those casinos that in their rush to efficiency
have seen fit to locate their players club in their cashier’s cage and have
employees handle both sets of transactions there. Now two high-volume areas
have become one really big high-volume area with longer lines, longer waits,
and less time for sales and relationship building.
• Casino ATMs that spit out all twenty dollar bills so that if you get $500 in cash, your pocket looks like you carry your jacket in it.
• Alternatively, casino ATMs/bill changers that spit out all one hundred dollar bills, requiring four or five transactions if you want to tip the valet parker $5.
• Casino restaurants that are not operated by the casino, but by an outside franchise or company, and who have no VIP lines, higher prices, and a service culture that is “all about them” and not you.
• Casino video poker bars, where the bar also has very inexpensive drink specials (usually $1 or $2 beer), thus clogging up the bar stools with drinkers and not players. Just try to get on a machine there.
• Signs anywhere (gift shop, players club, valet parking, spa desk, etc.) that say “Be Back In 5 Minutes.” I’ve tested these, it’s always at least 10 minutes.
• Casinos that do a giveaway of a really cool and desirable promotional item, then run out of the item, and rather than make you feel good about making a special trip to receive it, smugly point to the sign that says “While supplies last.”
• Casino restaurants that make unscheduled surprised closings because “the chef called in sick,” or “it was really slow, and we sent everyone home early.”
• Lame direct mail offers from casinos more than a thousand miles away. “Come in for your $5 of free play!”
• Items in the casino/hotel room mini bar that are not replenished after you use them, with no indication of them (and how much you were charged for them) when you check out.
• Casino front doors that open “in” from the inside when you are trying to leave.
• Employee uniforms (or lack of them) so much alike that you can’t tell who does what. Was that a porter or a slot technician?
Casino pet peeves; stamp them out wherever you see them and you’ll have more loyal (and less aggravated) guests.
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.
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