Jersey Jack – June 2022

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Jack Guarnieri 2022Finding Success While Dealing with Rising Costs

by Jack Guarnieri, Jersey Jack Pinball & PinballSales.com

Summer is almost here. For seasonal businesses, this is your time of the year to make money. How have you weathered the inflationary spiral resulting in higher costs to your business?

I’m going to guess that most all of you have had to raise prices. If not, then you cut the size of the product or experience you are selling. Portions may have gotten smaller or you may have to cut quality or quantity. You may have even cut back on labor or maintenance.

Be careful not to downsize yourself out of business.

If you don’t deliver the product or experience that your customers expect, they may not come back again. On the other hand, if you continue to deliver and provide the products and services you have been known for, you may be better off raising your prices. You may lose a few customers but can remain profitable.

I certainly don’t know your exact circumstances. For example, if you are at a destination location, your customers are aware that there are limited options for food and amusement so they are more willing to accept modest price increases in today’s environment.

The more cost-conscious customer is already buying the store brand and if prices rise, they may buy less. The customer the next tier up may switch down to the store brand when prices rise. So, if you raise prices, you may want to offer another option in order to keep them buying something from you (instead of nothing because of a price increase).

Think of shifting some business to a traditionally slower day or time. Offer something other than a dollar value or percentage off of your price to encourage business. Don’t take real money out of your pocket to make the sale. Think about how to create something that costs you almost nothing but has a high perceived value to your customer.

I recently told a friend, who has amusement games in his restaurant, to switch to tokens. A debit card system just won’t fit his location but tokens can offer him almost limitless ability to change pricing, reward players, control cash and expand earnings.

The net result will be more customer loyalty, more play and more profit. In an environment where prices are rising, he will be giving his customers more. He can’t give away quarters in a promotion but he can sure give them tokens.

Today’s word: Think. Think about how you can get your customers to spend more time and money at your business in this economically challenging time. I’m sure you will figure it out.

 


Jack Guarnieri started servicing electro-mechanical pinball machines in 1975 and has been involved in every phase of the amusement game business since then. He was an operator in NYC, then began a distributorship in 1999, PinballSales.com, selling coin-op to the consumer market. In January of 2011, he founded Jersey Jack Pinball (named after his RePlay Magazine pen name), which builds award-winning, full-featured, coin-op pinball machines. Email Jack at [email protected] jerseyjackpinball.com.

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