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Audience Experience in Multikino cinemas

cinema research      |      the impact of offline experiences online     |      work organization in CX optimization

Multikino collects and uses data about the experiences of movie-goers and users of Multikino.pl. The scope of cooperation during last 2 years dynamically evolved, from a small project related to the need to explore the characteristics of cinema enthusiasts to large-scale activities in which all employees are involved (from the board and cinema directors to employees with direct contact with the client). In addition, research carried out in Poland has already been transferred to foreign cinemas and websites in Lithuania and Latvia.

As a cinephile I was very happy to be involved in the CX research project for Multikino. First of all, it seemed intriguing in relation to the dynamically changing movie distribution model. The role of streaming platforms is growing and video materials are produced faster than we are able to view them. Furthermore, the ways of spending free time and consuming popular culture quickly evolved. Today, theaters are facing a challenge: how to attract a viewer who is more and more willing to watch movies and TV series on the screen of a laptop or smartphone? What do they really expect, how to provide them with the highest quality of service? A visit to the cinema is, after all, a way to spend free time, which we often experience with our relatives. Nobody likes when the time spent on pleasant things is wasted or, what’s worse, is associated with stress and irritation. From the point of view of the researcher of consumer behaviors, this is a very interesting challenge.

Jakub Kołaciński

Project Manager, YourCX

Research carried out for Multikino includes two main research areas: Multikino.pl web service and Multikino cinemas in Poland and abroad. In result of these activities, we get a comprehensive knowledge about the viewers. Through surveys, we get to know their opinions, experiences, emotions, and needs. Tracking scripts and advanced analytical mechanisms complement this information with an additional context: technical, practical and financial. Processed data is provided to all employees involved in the project in the form of regular reports and real-time information on dashboards. They also have constant access to the results through an extensive administrative panel. The effects of all activities related to the optimization of the website and the improvement of the quality of service in cinemas can, therefore, be verified on a regular basis.

But what is so special about this project? How to translate the achievements in the field of Customer Experience research that have been developed in recent years (connected, above all, with the experience of traditional and online stores) to such a specific field?

 

Multikino.pl website research

The first step that must be taken by the viewer interested in visiting the cinema is the purchase of tickets. More and more people are doing this through the Multikino.pl website, within which we carry out surveys tailored to the specifics of individual areas. Data is collected through tracking scripts integrated with the website, which respond to unusual user behavior. For example, in the case of the purchase process, when the visitor’s activities may suggest problems, we display a survey with questions about the ease of placing the order and asking for comments regarding the booking of tickets. We take into account the specifics of the entire process and additional contextual information, e.g. about number of free seats in the cinema hall, which is important in the case of the reasons for abandoning the purchase resulting from dissatisfaction with the availability of good seats. In all areas, we also use the Net Promoter Score and other quantitative assessments, monitoring changes in satisfaction over time and responding to abnormal events.

Furthermore, throughout the site, we ask about goals of visits, needs, and problems. This feedback allows additional data segmentation. We approach differently the analysis of the paths of people satisfied with the visit, and differently the Detractors. By gathering information about users’ activities before, during and after the visit, we can fully understand their behavior. We can also verify the declarations expressed in the surveys. For example, we can assess what percentage of people claiming to visit the site to buy tickets, in fact will. However, we do not close ourselves to analyzing behaviors in one session, but we also include deferred conversions during weeks and months after this particular visit.

Experiences in the cinema

After visiting the cinema, viewers receive an e-mail asking them to evaluate their experiences. The sent questionnaire touches upon various issues, from general impressions and satisfaction with the visit, through the quality of sound and image, to cleanliness in the toilets and courtesy of the service in the bar or café. In the event of unclaimed reservation, we ask for reasons for not accepting the tickets. In order to monitor the satisfaction of various special offers and promotions, we also ask about related issues, thanks to which we estimate the effectiveness of these campaigns and their impact on viewers’ behavior. Visitors to the VR cinema also have the chance to assess the impressions of this type of screenings. We collect a sample of over a dozen thousand fillings per month, which enables advanced analyzes and segmentation, including the financial context.

All declarative data regarding impressions from the cinema are supplemented with automatically transmitted additional parameters. We are talking about the data that we are able to save without having to ask for the viewer, such as the types of tickets, genres and titles of films, exact dates and times of sessions etc. This information allows detailed data segmentation, searching for correlations and links. In specific cases, they also allow you to reach the immediate sources of problems. For example, all remarks about the quality of the purchased food can be carefully verified. Cinema director knows when the certain situation occurred and who was responsible at that time. Viewer satisfaction is a priority and the main goal is to ensure the highest possible standard in all locations.

Research of this kind is also an opportunity to get to know the audience better: what they like, how they behave, what they are guided by when making decisions. On the basis of hard data, we verify all hypotheses and assumptions. Combining the answers to the question about punctuality (“Did you appear at the screening on time?”) with the declared frequency of cinema visits, for example, we noticed that with the increase in the frequency of visits to the cinema, the share of people who come to the screen during the advertising block increases, which is obviously due to the reluctance to watch them. The thesis that was once a supposition was thus confirmed by us on the basis of a simple data set.

A lot of questions and analyzes concern cinema bars and cafes. We monitor, among others, the level of satisfaction with service and dissatisfaction with the waiting time in the queue. We also check whether the service meets its obligations and ask for suggestions regarding the offer. For those who do not buy food at the cinema, we ask for reasons. On the basis of the response, we have determined, among other things, what percentage of viewers bring their own food to the cinema. By segmenting data according to demographic information, we learn about the habits and needs of specific consumer groups.

Practical use of data

In addition to monitoring the experience and quality of services, we use the involvement of users of the Multikino.pl website and cinema viewers asking them directly about competitive networks. We know, therefore, which cinemas they choose and why. On the basis of this information, Multikino acquires practical knowledge about the strengths and weaknesses of all the cinemas in Poland. As a result, we are able to relate the observed trends to the activities of other networks, which is particularly important in the context of differences in the surroundings of the competition of individual locations. Therefore, we refer individually to changes in the results of specific cinemas.

We also use the collected data to analyze financial sensitivity and to estimate the impact of CX on revenues. We know, therefore, that the negative experience on the Multikino.pl website results in a 5.4% decrease in the revenue potential of the Critics. Positive experience in the cinemas, however, results in an increase in the revenue potential by 7.7%. We also calculate the impact of individual problems on finances, thanks to which we anticipate threats and growth potentials based on the observed trends.

The YourCX team prepares most of the analyzes, presenting the most important conclusions, observations, and recommendations in the form of regular reports. In addition, the people directly responsible for the viewers’ experiences have access to special dashboards, which present the most important indicators of individual cinemas in real time. Comments from open responses are also available there, and cinema directors can monitor the situation on an ongoing basis and react to any negative signals if necessary. Therefore, all employees of cinemas and headquarters are involved in optimizing the experience.

A strong advantage of our research is also the ability to compare the results of specific cinemas, cities, and regions. Thanks to the use of benchmarks and the reference of results to a broader context, cinema directors are able to fully understand the observed changes and trends. Cinemas in which the introduced changes are perceived by the viewers positively constitute a model for other locations. Good practices are therefore duplicated. The ability to compare the results of individual locations also allows you to verify the effect of changes made in individual locations. It is easier to assess whether individual experiments are effective and profitable.

We do not treat online and offline channels separately. Knowledge about the behavior of users within Multikino.pl is therefore related to the research in the cinemas. Therefore, we know whether the viewers after visiting the cinema return to the website and whether they make another purchase. On the basis of this information, we assess what problems have the greatest impact on returns and conversion. Analyzes of future behaviors also help in the assessment of individual cinemas. The indicators obtained by questionnaires (such as the desire to visit the cinema again or the willingness to recommend it via NPS) are of course also used, but the possibility of actual verification of future events is priceless. We confirmed, among other things, a strong correlation between NPS from a visit to the cinema and the number of visits and purchases on the website. Satisfied viewers come back or recommend the cinema to others, attracting new people.

Summary

The operational approach in data analysis is based on real-time problem detection. Full monitoring of the situation allows you to immediately respond to potential problems, discover their causes, and thus take care of customer satisfaction and loyalty. Thanks to this, even dissatisfied people can be transformed into the most fervent fans. One can not forget about internal benchmarks: by analyzing the differences in the assessment of individual cinemas, cities and regions, good practices from these best-rated locations are replicated where problems arise.

In addition to the ongoing monitoring of the situation and operational activities, the strategic area is an extremely important area of knowledge. Data gained from research helps in the process of determining the problems and needs of clients, as well as trends of changes for these issues. The collected information is fully associated with analytical data, thanks to which we understand how particular issues affect business indicators (eg re-visits and sales). Having such data, we carry out the analysis of the revenue sensitivity for selected quality indicators. This approach allows you to fully determine the areas and topics that have the greatest impact on the business and which should be addressed first. Complementing this knowledge with the context regarding competition and preferences of choosing individual cinema chains, Multikino holds practical knowledge which allows to determine areas that needs investment in order to achieve the greatest benefits. In other words, we know how and what to do to take over customers of competing networks.

Piotr Wojnarowicz

CEO, YourCX