Six Flags launches first national ad campaign in seven years

Posted Friday, March 26, 2004 8:15 AM | Contributed by redman822

For the first time in seven years, Six Flags began a national advertising campaign last week featuring a new character intended to draw the over-worked family out to the company's parks.

Read the press release from Six Flags.

Related parks

Friday, March 26, 2004 11:30 AM
"...intended to draw the over-worked family out to the company's parks."

Looks like someone learned a very important lesson the hard way: thrill-seeking teens do not spend a lot of money. Families do.

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Friday, March 26, 2004 11:43 AM
Word up, Moosh. Maybe the SF parks will up the ante service wise as more families with higher expectations start arriving.

Since moving to L.A., I enjoyed my trip to SFMM, but was disappointed with the overall vibe of the park. 3 coasters closed all day. Ninja didn't open until mid-afternoon. S:TE only had one side running. Batman didn't open until noon, and then only had 1-train operation. Staff seemed a bit apathetic. Line jumpers abound. Maybe this new ad campaign will translate into better run parks. Until then, I'll continue to spend my money at Knott's.

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Friday, March 26, 2004 1:28 PM
I saw one of the commercials last night. It works pretty well. There is a great sense of fun and excitement created. I don't really understand the choice to use the old bald guy, but he is so lively and animated in the commercial that it works.
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Friday, March 26, 2004 3:58 PM
That easy...It's something people will remember.
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Friday, March 26, 2004 4:04 PM

Looks like someone learned a very important lesson the hard way: thrill-seeking teens do not spend a lot of money. Families do.

Ah, but guest spending is not a problem. Per-caps (the average amount of money each guest spends in the parks) have been increasing, while attendance has been decreasing (on a whole) over the past several years. This is information taken directly from their annual reports.

Nice thought, but not really the correct issue.

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Friday, March 26, 2004 4:16 PM
True, VTBC...it's not the main issue at hand here.
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Friday, March 26, 2004 7:28 PM
Yeah, people never coming back, never paying gate and dwindling attendance is the problem. Per cap doesn't mean jack if no one is there!
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Friday, March 26, 2004 7:31 PM
Danimales.......a little off topic, but I don't think I have ever been to SFMM and seen all the coasters running, particularly S:TE. Waited forever for that one......talk about low capacity.
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Friday, March 26, 2004 10:21 PM
These commercials a very catchy and memorable. I think that Six Flags might be on to something here. In a way it is too bad that I can no longer go to SFWoA. I haven't been to a Six Flags in a long time, but this commercial honestly did peak my interest.
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Saturday, March 27, 2004 12:00 AM

Yeah, people never coming back, never paying gate and dwindling attendance is the problem. Per cap doesn't mean jack if no one is there!

But the drop in attendance isn't significant enough to discount the increase in per-cap spending. Sure, attendance has been dropping on a whole over the past few seasons, but not to the point where you can overlook the increase in spending.

We can, however, look at why per-cap spending has increased. $10 parking, anyone?

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Saturday, March 27, 2004 8:52 AM
"isn't significant enough" ??

Which annual report were YOU reading??

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Saturday, March 27, 2004 1:30 PM
Attendance was down 1.8% in 2003. You can access that information in their 2003 Year-End Review. I don't think that's a significant decrease in attendance when that's spread over 40 parks. Which annual reports are YOU reading?
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Saturday, March 27, 2004 5:16 PM
Down 1.8% is down 1.8 percent...that doesn't get reduced to being down only 0.045% at each park.

Their attendance was down 1.8% across the entire chain...

In 2001 attendance was at 46.576 million

In 2002 attendance was at 42.495 million (down 8.8% from 2001)

In 2003 attendance was at 41.728 million (down 10.4% from 2001 and 1.8% from 2002)

Figure that the "missing" attendees only paid $20 to get in, that's almost a $180 million drop in gate revenue for the years 2002 and 2003 compared to 2001's numbers...

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Saturday, March 27, 2004 6:32 PM
The old guy (well, young guy in costume obviously) serves a purpose -- it's a lot more humourous to see creeky old man suddenly break out in wild dance moves...kind of goes with all the families doing routine jobs (while the old guy is slowly making his way out of the bus), then suddenly old hell breaks loose. I think the commerical is quite cool, and better then hearing some badly-composed jingle.
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Saturday, March 27, 2004 10:22 PM
Uh, that's a significant increase from year to year when they keep adding parks.
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Saturday, March 27, 2004 11:54 PM
Wow, comparing stats to pre 9/11 figures is pretty misguiding. Tourism as a whole took a major hit, as I'm sure you know, and that affected the attendance for Six Flags parks. So comparing something with a major decrease which can be greatly attributed to one uncontrollable factor isn't going to give you as accurate results as if you compared it to a year where no such event happened (2002-2003). Yes the attendance still dropped but by a less significant amount, which will show you something not only about how the company is fairing but the economy as well.
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Sunday, March 28, 2004 2:39 AM
But with all of the outsourcing of even white colllar jobs going to India and China for lower wages and thanks to NAFTA so many Americans losing their jobs there won't be a middle class left to support the parks. Look what happened in 1930!! People without enough money to put food on the table sure as hell won't have the money to go to a theme park. I've have also heard several sources tell me that if we don't get a president and congress to seriously fix the problems like tearing up NAFTA the 1930s may seem tame by comparson. :-(
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Sunday, March 28, 2004 8:14 AM
PinkFloydFanatic,

First off, before anyone calls me a CP fanboy, I am not, SFGAm is my homepark.

But, if you want to blame 9/11, weather or anything else, try explaining why during the same period CF parks attendance has increased?

In 2001 attendance was at 11.890 million

In 2002 attendance was at 12.380 million (up 4.1% from 2001)

In 2003 attendance was at 12.245 million (up 3.0% from 2001 and down 1.1% from 2002)

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Sunday, March 28, 2004 2:01 PM

Uh, that's a significant increase from year to year when they keep adding parks.

I'm not quite sure who you're referring to here, but I'll add this:

The figure I gave was "down 1.8% from 2002 to 2003." The only park added was Six Flags New Orleans. The attendance decrease from 2002 to 2003 isn't significant when you look at the scary drop from 2001 to 2002, and we all know why that happened.

I agree that declining attendance is always a concern, but I don't think it will be the nail in the Six Flags coffin. Debt is the problem.

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