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Retail Lessons from Las Vegas Vacation Part 3 of 3 – Selling the Experience

In Part 1 of the blog I wrote about video technology, part 2 on omni channel, for the third and last part of the blog series I would like to show what Las Vegas is doing in terms of selling the total consumer experience rather than just products and services.

In one sense Las Vegas has always been about selling the experience when it comes to gambling.  You don’t get a tangible product for your bets (unless you win) but people gamble for the experience.  As gaming is legalized in many countries as well as states, Las Vegas has adapted itself to market the Las Vegas experience beyond gaming.

While I was on vacation I visited the Stratosphere hotel and casino which is the tallest structure in Las Vegas which features casinos, restaurants and thrill rides on top.  Its latest offering SkyJump  (package costs including video via wrist cam and photo) allows participants to jump off the tower at the 850 ft and free fall down and land via decelerator wire.  Certainly a customer experience not easily forgotten :-)

Other examples include

At the Fashion Show Mall Las Vegas, the mall enhanced the shopping experience of shopping with live fashion shows sponsored by vendors a few times in a day.  I have visited many fashion shopping malls and many have hosted runway shows.  In this case they have a permanant platform that rises from the floor for regular runway shows during the day.  This one photographed above was sponsored by Guess brand

Bellagio Water Fountain Show

One of the signature experiences in Las Vegas is the Bellagio water fountain, not only has it been featured in movies, television shows, it drove the brand of the casino itself, it created a whole ecosystem of experiences in the surrounding properties.  Hotels like Planet Hollywood charges a premium for rooms facing the water fountain and this picture was taken at the Eiffel Tower restaurant at the Paris hotel with special tables that face the water display.

As retailers look to consumers that are omnichannel and constantly looking to be entertained and distracted, selling products integrated with experience and service is one approach to success.  Consumers today are more apt to share  conversation about experiences than the ownership of the product: People talk about the driving experiences of a car rather than the car, latest music they heard rather than the music player they bought.  Retailers who can tap into experience selling stands a better chance to drive brand awareness and customer retention.

 This is the last of the blog series from Las Vegas.  If you are visiting National Retail Federation Conference Expo in New York on January 16th and 17th, please drop by and visit me at Cisco booth #851 and Big Idea Session titled “Catch ‘em and Keep ‘em. Satisfying Today’s Shopper” on omnichannel retailing.

See you all in New York.

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