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OPERATORS’ Forum

POLISH UP YOUR ATTRACTIONS

The one constant thing about this industry is that as soon as things look to be on the up, something comes up that puts an ungodly spoke in the wheel of the profitable progres thought to be ahead.  New non-smoking laws all over the place are taking a considerable toll.  If you’re fortunate enough to be located in one of the few regions where this is not yet the case, don’t get too carried away with your good fortune as it soon will be.

      There’s no easy way around this one for amusement machine operators.  Governments dependent on revenue from gambling have in many cases made allowances for gambling patrons, but certainly not for those who play amusements games and there’s been a noticeable reduction in revenues from locations like bars and clubs when they’ve been declared non-smoking.

“As is always the case when the industry hits a snag, good operators will not feel anywhere near as much pain as poor operators.  There are many things that can be done to entice punters to drop a few coins in an amusement game”

      But even worse for the industry than the non-smoking laws is the high price of fuel.  It’s possible that the huge recent increases in fuel costs haven’t yet hit your cash boxes, but they surely will.  Retailers of non-essential goods are already  feeling  the pinch as consumers are forced to use what was previously disposable income on filling their gas tanks.  Every indicator that I’ve seen tells us there is no relief in sight and that it’s much more likely fuel prices will continue to rise for some time.


      If that does happen, operators are surely going to see it reflected in their cash boxes and of course that will flow right through the industry.  Okay, so that’s the doom and gloom, but there is an upside.  As is always the case when the industry hits a snag, god operators will not feel anywhere near as much pain as poor operators.  There are many things that can be done to entice punters to drop a few coins in an amusement game, no matter how thin their wallet may be, and good operators are probably working on the problem already.
      Good operators would have already monitored any reduction in earnings and started working on how to restore them.  For the not so good operator, here are a few tips that may help.  First and foremost, locations must be visited.  It doesn’t matter it you visit each location weekly to collect or service the equipment, that doesn’t count as on those visits you’re not generally looking correctly at your equipment.

      This time, you have to go to these locations and look at them as if you were a potential customer.  And as you look at each piece of equipment, you must say to yourself: “Players are not idiots.”  Be honest with yourself when you do this, and I guarantee you will see some dirt, grime, dead insects, unattractive prizes, non-functioning lights, non-functioning part s of games and/or whole host of other things that can turn players off.  Be honest and you will see many games that shouldn’t be where they are.
      Games have to sparkle with cleanliness, function fully as they did when new, and offer the customers a bit of genuine fun, or in a prize game, a prize they would really like to win.  Recloth those pool tables more regularly, upgrade your music, give the punters a ‘Happy Hour’ or something like that.  Move the games around a bit if you can, rotate where you are able to, get rid of anything that’s really bad as it will drag the other down.  Sure it’s hard work, but it pays off and is vital of you if you want to stop the decline in your takings when consumer spending really tightens up.

when times are good, poorer operators can get away with just about anything, but to stand a chance of making money when consumer spending is tight, each and every game you have must draw customers to it”
      This is not rocket scientist stuff I’m writing, it’s only common sense.  Good operators have always done it and they’ve reaped the benefits.  Unfortunately all operators aren’t good operators, far from it going on the number of machines I see in my travels that are in shabby, dirty and many cases, unworking condition.  When times are good, poorer operators can get away with just about anything, but to stand a chance of making money when consumer spending is tight, each and every game you have must draw customers to it.  You cannot afford to turn one potential customers away.  Give it a go guys, you have nothing to lose than in most cases a bit of sweat.  Why let the good operators get all the money?
Till next time – Jack Rodios   www.cbcexpo.com  www.aussiegameauctions.com

 

 

 

 

 

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