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I would have to agree entirely with you on the Hollywood stunt driver side of things (i havent had a chance to ride jet rescue so i cant comment on that). i understand that new shows need time to get settled down however, after seeing the police academy stunt show several times, the new stunt show left a bitter taste with the distinct lack of substance. As i've said in other threads, the show has great driving that does eventually get boring after its repeated for the 4th time and the distinct lack of characters that provide physical slapstick comedy and stunts leave me wondering if i want to go back and see it again, which is completely opposite to the police academy stunt show which i wanted to see every show of.

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The thing that bugs me is that these delays happen virtually every year, and it always results in attractions opening part way into the holidays.

It's interesting to look back at when proper construction was started on previous attractions.

Superman: Early June
Batwing: Mid July
Stunt Driver: Early July
Jet Rescue: Early July

Assuming you want to have it open by the start of December (To make the most of the entire school holiday period) they are basically leaving themselves only 5 months, and of course the typical start times render an even more desirable September opening all but impossible. Why not just start building sooner? If you have bad luck then you have a bit of buffer, and if you don't, then you can open the ride early. Is it worse to open early than late?

Anyhow, I agree completely with the article. For a long time I have felt that new attractions are handled poorly. The common pattern seems to be to start building halfway through the year, pretend the ride doesn't exist to everyone, including the media right to the end, and then do and advertising blitz a couple of weeks before it opens, and then open it halfway into the school holidays.

When the parks rely so heavily on interstate visitors this approach seems silly. You cannot find out about a new attraction a couple of weeks before it opens, and then expect to be able to get a room on the Gold Coast and everything else (Flights etc) within that short period. To me, the net result is just value adding to the visits of people who already had trips planned....they get a new thing to see, rather than actually attracting new customers, as a new attractions are supposed to do.

I mean, did anyone notice the ride 'n' slide passes they were pushing. They were valid until Christmas eve! Why on earth do they need to be deep discounting in the school holidays. If they had the ride open, they wouldn't need to be doing this.

Personally I'd be having the ride advertised on the MyFun site/emails a few months (not weeks) prior, with a link to a blog...the critical thing is to keep it constantly updated, pretty much just bombard people about it and get people hyped. At the same time I'd be focussing on the local market too, pushing annual passes, perhaps with an online offer that if they purchase one by a certain date (within the construction period) they can be assured of a ticket to a VIP event to be 'first to ride'...that way you can have them boosting attendance at the park with their passes during the quiet mid year periods.

Within the park, have a similar sort of approach....on the fences around the construction site, have renderings of the new attraction, and advertising for the annual pass upgrade offer and vip events.

Of course, you'd need to be careful with making sure the ride will open on time, but I guess one approach could be to state the attractions opening date as being slightly later than what is projected internally. Then if the ride manages to be done early, you can hype up the early opening...and all those people who were following it in the blog would suddenly have something to be excited about.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I agree with most of what you are saying Gazza, the parks are doing a pretty poor job of promoting themselves these days. Sure they spend the money but it is poorly executed for the most part, in terms of promoting new attractions well in advance. Official blogs and online social media can be a powerful tool, yet none of the parks seem to utilise them and instead rely on traditional advertising media.

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