In a recent conversation with a chief technology officer, he asserted all digital technology changes in his organisation were being led by IT and not by marketing. It made me wonder: How long a marketing function like this could survive?
Village Cinemas has debuted in-seat food and beverage services for VPremium cinema patrons with a new mobile app aimed at improving customer experiences onsite through digital means.
The cinema operator is claiming its new mobile ordering and in-seat delivery marks the first time guests will be able to access such services outside of gold class style cinemas in Australia. Customers will have access to the specialised menu of hot food, alcohol, popcorn and choc tops.
The service initially launched at VPremium theatres at Southland, Hobart and the Jam Factory in Melbourne and works off a free app, now available through the App Store.
The service and app are the result of a live innovation project launched by Village Cinemas in Melbourne earlier this year, aimed at finding ways of incorporating mobile its offering. To do this, the company partnered with digital and user experience consultancy, Deepend, on a three-day onsite activity that saw a team of six engage with local patrons to create, test and prototype a customer-centric app or program.
Village Cinemas general manager of sales and marketing, Mohit Bhargava, said introducing the feature to its VPremium concept helped improve its positioning as an alternative between top-grade gold class and traditional cinema complexes. VPremium cinemas offer smaller audience sizes, larger seats and tables.
“Leading into the busiest time of year in cinemas, where we understand many of our customers are inconvenienced by long lines at the candy bar, we are excited to offer this elevated level of service to our guests in VPremium Cinemas,” he said.
“The app will no doubt enhance the overall movie experience – patrons can now bypass queues and sit back and relax, without having to move from their seats.”
Village general manager of IT, Matt Hoskin, added that the customer journey is for the most part digital today. “Introducing such capabilities to our service offering is integral to our business going forward,” he says.