Last time, we talked about preserving and protecting your investment from the beginning of the season until the last guest leaves your gates. For now, we are focusing on your corn maze, but the principle applies to every aspect of your venue and to every small part. It’s equally important to make sure to maintain the camp fire pits just as much as the duck races and the corn cannon. If there is an overall feel of quality and professionalism, you will demonstrate that you care about providing a good experience from start to finish.
One of the biggest challenges for a venue that uses a corn maze is to make sure that it lasts until the end of the season. Most venues are open for at least 6-8 weeks, which means that thousands or even tens of thousands of guests will be on your property and in your corn! And since most venues wrap up around Halloween, the majority of your guests may come at the end of your season.
It is easy as small business owners to get tunnel vision or a jaded perspective on what our guests want, what is working well, and where we need to improve. It is also easy to get complacent in areas that are not our passions or areas of expertise and since they are working “well enough” they don’t get the attention they sometimes need. A fresh perspective from our guests can help us to see any blind spots that need our attention.
The best way to do this is through a survey. Today we are going to talk about the different ways to conduct surveys and what questions we should ask.
It's that time of year again where we look back on what we accomplished the previous year and set some goals or resolutions for the 365 days that lie ahead. As Agritourism owners, our goal should be to improve upon our product and services every year. In this post, we will talk about some tips on how to do that more effectively.
It’s not always easy and sometimes it’s not even feasible, but animals can be an important part of an agritourism venue. Since we as a society have moved so far away from the farm and even further from interacting with certain live animals, many venues use animals to create important memories as well as what we like to call “teachable moments”. Animals provide the link between the world we live in and what is behind that world. They allow people to understand the origin of some of our food as well as simply experience the joy of interacting with a new form of life.
So let’s talk about petting zoos and things like it for the next several...
This can be a tough one to navigate. Should you charge for the 85-year-old grandmother that is just there to watch her grandchild open presents at a birthday party? Should you charge for parents that are there to help with the field trip? What about someone that is physically handicapped and won’t be participating in any activities? These are all tough scenarios to navigate while keeping your customers happy but let’s talk through some of the options you have.
Insurance First and foremost, check with your insurance carrier to see what their requirements are around this. I have never personally run into a provider that...
Long lines are one of those things we consider a “good problem to have”. Unfortunately, long lines can be a frustration for your guests and not a good way to start their fun day at the farm. Here are some tips to keep those lines moving.
1. Good Signage
Be sure you have easy-to-read signs at your check-in area. Not just at the cash register but in several places that can be easily seen from the lines so customers can be more prepared when it is their turn to pay.
2. Limited Options
Keep it Simple. Don’t have too many combo packages or options. Studies have shown that limiting options to 3 or less is the sweet spot in situati...
Last week we talked about how to be intentional about customer service and we focused on being relational. I was thinking about how that skill is sometimes easier for some than it is for others. Some people come by it naturally when others have to work at it. We recommend instructing your staff and maybe even role playing how to implement this quality. Let’s face it. Some of our guests make it very difficult to be relational. Confrontational maybe, but not relational! But our response to difficult situations will set us apart from the competition.
This week I want to focus on the second aspect of intentional customer service. While it is...
As Agritourism owners we find ourselves in a wide variety of stores for a wide variety of reasons. Even though price is a big determining factor for whether or not I frequent a store, there are other factors that are equally important. If you were to ask me my opinion about the 3 local hardware stores that I visit the most, I would most likely evaluate them based on price, inventory and customer service. And based on those things there is one store that stands out and one I will go out of my way to support.
There are few things more important to a customer than personal service. I believe they will even pay a little bit more if they thin...
Let’s continue talking about your traffic flow and look at the layout of your venue. Safety is a crucial factor when it comes to evaluating our policies and procedures, so we need to evaluate any safety issues when it comes to how vehicles enter, exit and travel throughout your property.
As I shared before, at one of our locations we were looking for a feasible way to redesign the flow of traffic. One of the biggest drawbacks to the existing design forced our guests to have to navigate the flow of traffic as it entered and exited the property. The entrance to our agritourism venue and the location of the farm store were both...