We have an insightful understanding of every event organizer's target base- Anil Makhija, BookMyShow
Besides being India’s leading ticketing platform for movies and live events, BookMyShow is a go-to choice of event planners for services like box office management, gate entry management, ticket printing, wrist band printing, F&B management using RFID technology etc. As the company warms up for all the action behind-the-scene at the much-hyped and awaited Justin Bieber concert in Mumbai, we take tips from Anil Makhija, VP - Service Delivery, BookMyShow on how to become a category leader.
1. In a service industry like yours what are the key things to keep in mind to guarantee a seamless end-to-end process?
The most important thing is to keep the user at core of all actions, thoughts and processes that are being followed within an organization. Unless a service provider, such as BookMyShow, does not walk in its user’s shoes, we won’t be able to neither fully understand their needs and expectations nor be able to ensure a fabulous experience. As far as BookMyShow is concerned, we make sure we understand that going to a movie, play or a concert is not just an outing, rather a complete process that starts with a user perceiving BookMyShow synonymous with entertainment so as to enjoy instant recall. This is also where we need to play our part in subtly strengthening our brand proposition through innate exposures during our users’ customer journeys.
Due to the ways in which organizations are structured, services are often split between different functions and departments. As a result, a user has to end up seeking answers to his/her queries and services by dealing with all of them. What we forget is that a user is ultimately looking for a single seamless journey across all touch points. Every time he/she touches an organization, it is a ‘moment of truth’. This is that moment when a service organization can make or break a user’s experience.
Taking the time to understand a user’s goals during his journey with your brand can go a long way in keeping him/her happy. In the case of BookMyShow, these goals are not just related to how a user would navigate within our platform, but also if the journey is ending in an on-ground experience.
2. What is BookMyShow's full bouquet of services offered for large format events?
BookMyShow is not just the ultimate and most preferred entertainment ticketing platform for millions of users, we are also the go-to ticketing partner for event organizers. Our end to end ticketing solutions allows event organizers to choose from a host of services that we offer to them - right from online services and exposure, on-ground services to consulting services.
Our years of experience in online services provides us with deep insightful understanding of the target base of every event organizer. Our services in this case start right from designing a micro site and a mobile app for the event to event marketing that includes promotions, social media marketing, database marketing to name a few. To increase footfalls to a certain event, our phase wise ticketing and multiple payment options, venue layout and seat preferences and delivery tracker on our website goes a long way.
As part of our on-ground services, we start with a venue recce to understand the space and offer complete solutions to maximise the benefits for an event organizer. Here we take care of everything, right from setting up dedicated 24x7 call centre support, ticket printing, automated guest list management, authentication gate entry mechanisms, cashless F&B management at the venue to outlet tie ups and merchandise sale.
We work closely with event organizers on strategies regarding decisions on artists, venue, ticket pricing, date and time selection, marketing and sales, legal formalities, content generation and amplification. These may look like small decisions, but have a phenomenal impact on the success of an event. These broadly constitutes our consulting services.
3. What is the most challenging part?
Months of hard work and dedication goes behind creating a spectacular event. The challenging part, therefore, is to have all the multiple teams and agencies involved deliver their best on that one particular day of the event. An organizer’s role in this case is absolutely critical to ensure seamless execution and interactions between all parties involved.
Early planning, following a disciplined approach, adhering to the timelines, making provision for adequate facilities is imperative to offer a truly world class experience to a spectator.
4. How do you tackle the problem of gate crashers?
At BookMyShow, we believe that regardless of the venue size & scale, planning for crowd management, spectator flow and strong authentication/verification of valid ticket holders is imperative. We provide real time flow and entry data numbers to prevent any unauthorized entries. Our tickets also have unique security features that are not visible to human eye. The use of physical turnstiles and personal digital assistants also help us in authenticating entries.
We also continue to invest in developing and exploring global best practices to better this experience.
We also must understand that preventing illegal entries does not begin or end at authentications at the gates. It is also about ensuring a smooth flow of spectators approaching the venue as well as waiting at various points around the venue. Clearly marked approaches and directions to the venue and facilities inside the venue, proper traffic arrangements and management also play a critical role in effective crowd management.
5. How does BookMyShow set itself apart from other ticketing providers?
BookMyShow has not just redefined entertainment ticketing in India but we have become the gateway to access of entertainment for millions of users across the country. Be it movies, live events, sports, plays- BookMyShow is the go-to platform today. Over the years, as we have built our brand, we have also developed an incisive understanding of how this industry works and have mapped it with what our users need and desire. As category leaders, we are expanding this category not just to reach out to more users but to offer them incomparable experiences. As a result, we work with all mega event organizers today to successfully implement events such as Sunburn, IPL, The Global Citizen India Festival to name a few.
We actually keep our users at the core of everything we do. To achieve this, we have built strong internal teams to reduce dependency on any external partner. Right from the contact centre team that works round the clock to help and support our users, to the technology, design, events, marketing teams, we are all a part of the BookMyShow family that believes in providing the users an ultimate experience through our platform. This also contributes a great deal in providing excellent turnaround times, customisable solutions, flexible and constantly evolving marketing and communication strategies, on the fly and quick strategy shifts and more importantly leverage data analytics to more effectively reach out to our users.
6. What unique services are you planning for the Justin Bieber concert?
We are already gearing up for the event and are determined to make the upcoming Justin Bieber concert a phenomenal success. We will provide complete end to end ticketing solutions – right from ticket printing, home delivery of tickets to on-ground management of the event that will include gate entry management via automated gates using turnstiles and use of smart RFID cards which can be used by attendees at the arena to purchase their refreshments during the event.
At this stage, we are also closely with working with the event organizers to address any potential bottlenecks and pain points of the attendees.
7. How much does it cost to engage BookMyShow for an event?
BookMyShow offers a variety of services for each event organizer to choose from. We have different business models and each one is customized to meet the specific event requirements, keeping the type of audience and event format in mind. We work closely with our event partners to understand the requirements and mutually discuss the needs, after which we are able to suggest efficient, cost effective and impactful solutions to benefit both- event organizers and the end audience.
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