Odeon to overhaul customer experience

Odeon is overhauling its service offering across the UK and Ireland as it looks to position the brand as a market leader in customer experience.

Odeon hopes its focus on customer service will encourage people to see upcoming releases at the cinema such as Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit.

The UK’s largest cinema chain is “putting customers at the centre” of its brand building efforts to boost its “share of wallet” in a competitive market that has seen new entertainment channels such as VOD and mobile viewing emerge to compete with cinema chains in recent years.

It is working with shopper insight experts Empathica to capture insight from customers each month across the UK and Ireland via an online survey. The company says feedback from the My Odeon service will be used to tailor brand building activity such as promotions and advertising campaigns to “enhance” loyalty, advocacy and customer experience in future.

The initiative is being promoted through QR codes on posters and on cards handed out by staff in-store. Customers are encouraged to take part by entry into a monthly prize draw to win £1,000.

The overhaul is being led by commercial director Andy Edge, who joined the business from Tussauds Group in May.

Edge says: “We want to give every guest a premier service in a fantastic and inspiring environment. Therefore, feedback on what they really think and feel about their in-cinema experience is at the heart of taking our business forward.

“Although different films attract different audience demographics, our customers are predominantly young and affluent. We’re competing for share of wallet amongst a very marketing and technology savvy audience. It’s vital that we continue to push the boundaries to maintain our competitive edge and ensure we’re able to give our guests a cinema experience that will be memorable for all the right reasons.”

The push follows a trial carried out in over ten cinemas, predominantly in Ireland between May and October, that saw more than 200 customers per cinema take part during this period.

The chain’s owner Odeon & UCI Cinemas Group hopes the initial reaction the service has been greeted with will help boost attendances, which were down 13 per cent quarter-on-quarter for the three months to 30 September.

The company, which owns 200 cinemas across the UK and Europe under both brands, sold debts of over £470m to private equity firm Terra Firma earlier this year to refinance existing debt and provide funds for further expansion.

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