“You know Fred”, said my client, the other day, “the problem with bowling is, it just isn’t cool. The kids don’t think it’s cool and the older folks don’t even think about it as something to do”. Now if you can make it cool, you’ll be a miracle man.”
Which got me thinking.
Could we just do this? Could this actually happen? You know make bowling into the next American Idol or Dancing with the Stars? Wouldn’t that be great?
Sure would…and then I woke up.
The problem isn’t about bowling being cool; the problem is much easier to define.
Its YOUR center that isn’t cool. The center above is cool. It’s Brooklyn Bowl that does something no other center in the NY metro area does. It books big name bands. Concert type bands every week. It is an “Honest to God Music Venue” surrounded by bowling and old fashioned comfort food
Oh, maybe your center is cool and you’re doing great because you stand for something and you have a brand identity.
Look at these 25 bowling centers in this link and see why they are cool and why they rated a mention. http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-coolest-bowling-alleys
The answer is because in their market they are different.
It may be because your center is old school and has no automatic scorers, old wood lanes and scoring tables and all the employees wear old funky bowling shirts and everything down to the last detail is “throwback retro cool.”
But it’s real and its honest and that’s all that matters for it to be cool. Because being honest and authentic is something, unfortunately, that is all too often uncommon and definitely not cool.
It may be because your center is high tech, high touch, great food and beverage, laser tag and beautiful servers and is just a “WOW” when you walk in. Your first words are of course “Awesome, Unbelievable.”
Or maybe it’s because you have installed cherry wood lanes in your center and it’s the only center in town that has it.
The point is, if you want to be cool, you have to be different.
You have to surprise, delight, entertain, amaze, astonish, flabbergast, and startle the imagination of your customer because you have something that no one else has and then you can be cool.
Don’t get me wrong, I love modern new bowling and entertainment centers, but if you look at your center or get a fresh pair of eyes to look at, maybe you can find what you do differently than your competition and if what you do differently, you really do better.
If your center is old school, then keep it old school, but make sure it is “authentic, real and truly a 50’s throwback.”
For those of you that renumber the Old Petersen Classic tournament, you’ll know exactly what I mean. You’ll know how they made rudeness, bad service a fun time. It was brilliant!
And it was cool.