Cedar Point Getaway Guide... WTF?

Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:20 PM

Ah ha! So you do admit you are a member of the Anti-Charm Coalition?! ;)


My author website: mgrantroberts.com

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:22 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

rollergator said:
Doesn't CP collect good hard data on the utilization of the GG? For instance, aren't there like coupons redeemed at the park, or something that shows the "benefits" in such a way as to provide SOME decent cost/benefit info?

Yeah, but that's only telling you how many coupons get used for how many guides are sent. It says nothing (except maybe totally indirectly and incompletely) about creating new customers, retaining customers, encouraging visits, creating loyalty - there's so much more than numbers when it comes to something like this.

Carrie M. said:
So what you are really arguing is that the piece needs to be really pretty in order to be effective. I just can't buy into that.

Umm, yeah...I think I might be saying that.

To be effective in the abstract ways I mention - it absolutely does.

To be effective in creating nice looking numbers about coupon use conversions - no, it doesn't.

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:25 PM
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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:26 PM

You can't possibly still be arguing that sending dead trees through snail mail is the best possible use of those dollars, are you?


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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:28 PM
Jeff's avatar

I miss cold, hard, business-minded Gonch. (And those adjectives go with the "business-minded" part, perverts.)


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:29 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Not necessaarily, Brian. I'm think I'm arguing that the GG is a meaningful, effective business pursuit - even if there's not a number on a spreadsheet that says so.

Sorry, Jeff. There's a time for the cold, hard, business-minded approach (99% of the time) and there's a time to ignore it.

This time is the latter. The GG is the exception, not the rule.

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:32 PM
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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:31 PM

I'll tell you one thing...when we were handing out Getaway Guides at the front desks more than a decade ago I would have never believed they would generate four pages of discussion on an internet website. So, maybe there WAS more to them as Gonch is trying to argue.

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:32 PM

I'm think I'm arguing that the GG is a meaningful, effective business pursuit - even if there's not a number on a spreadsheet that says so.

But, if spending those ad dollars on the intertubes, or radio spots, or whatever returns better results, then cutting back on Guide production is a great idea.

Last edited by Brian Noble, Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:33 PM
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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:37 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Yep. But I'm not sure it does.

It might offer easier to measure, more instantaneaous results, but I'm not sure that over the long term they results are actually better.

I really do believe that as an advertising and marketing tool, that the GG was a wonderful and effective approach.

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:38 PM
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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:41 PM

Brian Noble said:
You can't possibly still be arguing that sending dead trees through snail mail is the best possible use of those dollars, are you?

^ Brian Noble, I am surprised too that some are making this argument.

I am a child of the 70s and 80s and the GG had no bearing on my falling in love with CP. It was all of the lucky kids that got to go and then would come back and tell us unfortunate ones what we were missing. The commercials later fuelled the passion even more.

Media, marketing, and advertising change, as new technologies come out, the ways to promote things change with it. The park web sites and fan sites have, in most ways, taken the place of the GG.

I think more of a "loss of how things were" is what is at work here... nostalgia can be very powerful.

Last edited by Zakkster, Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:55 PM
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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:45 PM

What have we learned today?

We've learned that even a right bastard like Gonch has a soft spot in there somewhere. If there's hope for Gonch, there's hope for us all.

;)


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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:51 PM

Why...he's...he's pulled an anti-Gonch! ;)


My author website: mgrantroberts.com

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:52 PM
rollergator's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:

Yeah, but that's only telling you how many coupons get used for how many guides are sent. It says nothing (except maybe totally indirectly and incompletely) about creating new customers, retaining customers, encouraging visits, creating loyalty - there's so much more than numbers when it comes to something like this.

Yeah, that's precisely why I capitalized "SOME good cost/benefit data" - I'm on your side about the existence of benefits that are "impossible-to-measure"...to the extent that a rational numbers-oriented data-geek can be.

Last edited by rollergator, Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:52 PM
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Thursday, May 14, 2009 3:55 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Nah, this isn't nostalgia. Look who you're talking to here. (quite frankly, given my history on the site, I'm a little insulted that it would even be suggested :) )

This is (for lack of a less annoying and overused term) - thinking outside the box. Understanding that different media has different perception, different results, different impact, different exposure points.

The light zooming down the fiber optic cable isn't doing the same thing the dead trees were. Online versions of any given thing aren't automatically going to replace the real-world equivalent. Sometimes it makes sense, sometimes it doesn't.

I think this is a case of not only the different results, impact, perceptions, etc - but also of doing something 'in addition to' rather than 'instead of.'


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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:00 PM

Gonch, I wanted to point out the nostalgia thing, but didn't want to be rude :)

Look at all of the major department stores that had catalogs... how many have them now other then J C Penny? They just were not cost effective and this was before the interwebs.

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:04 PM
Carrie M.'s avatar

Lord Gonchar said:


This is (for lack of a less annoying and overused term) - thinking outside the box.

See, I think that's funny, because I see it as the exact opposite. I see it as clinging to the thing that has always been done for fear of losing some benefit that cannot even be measured in the first place.


"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins." --- Benjamin Franklin

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:05 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Well, you're wrong. :) ;)


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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:06 PM
Carrie M.'s avatar

I thought you'd say that. :) ;)


"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins." --- Benjamin Franklin

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:07 PM
rollergator's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:The light zooming down the fiber optic cable isn't doing the same thing the dead trees were.

...or else we'd all be riding virtual coasters... ;)

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:42 PM
Josh M's avatar

I'm amazed at how far this discussion has gone. I will just add my 2 cents and then run back to my corner. As much as I am an internet/technology junkie... there was always something special about getting the full GG every year. When I was younger, I used to always take out the maps from the center and hang them up, and go to school with the Getaway Guide and brag about the new rides coming to CP (yes, I was... and still am a nerd). A brochure of coupons, and the veritable buffet of web content still don't give me the excitement getting a new GG in the mail did.

I'm all about saving trees, but I have to side with Gonch on this argument. The impact of the GG is completely different than anything I can find on the web... at least so far.... (I'm still holding out for 4D multi-sensory websites ;) )


Josh M.

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Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:47 PM
Pagoda Gift Shop's avatar

Count me as somewhat nostalgic. I spent hours every year staring at the 2-page park map in the early 90's. Things change over time, so I never expected it to always stay the same, but I've always thought having something in your hands to look at is much more effective than just a TV spot or billboard ad. Every year we would get it and start talking about vacation that summer, usually the first conversation of the year.

So many of the coasters at CP are eye candy. I can't imagine too many folks would just toss it in the garbage without leafing through it atleast once. How do you say no to a scenic Magnum cover picture?

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