H&LA’s David Sangree, MAI, CPA, ISHC and Joseph Pierce, MAI attended the IAAPA Expo in November. The Expo was well-attended as always with over 40,000 attendees and hundreds of exhibits showcasing the latest and greatest in industry technology and services. David and Joseph had several key takeaways from the conference:
- Labor cost and availability are a prime operations concern. Increasing minimum wage and the strong employment numbers are squeezing the bottom lines of operations. Attractions should empower employees in decision-making.
- Presenters stressed the need to create authentic experiences as Millennial’s continue to place more value on the experience than the product.
- A number of presenters emphasized the need to keep up with trends in new attractions and experiences.
- Operators need to develop a social media presence and make use of social media analytics, setting goals for social media analytics just as they do for business operations.
- A number of developers continued to raise concern regarding the difficulty in raising funding for projects.