CUSTOMER STORY

Vue

Rolling out the red carpet for customers

Snapshot

Challenge

Enhance the experience of movie-goers, and also reach beyond these traditional customers to make more of existing assets.

Solution

Bringing all Vue sites together on an ultrafast network using IPVPN with ADSL backup. 

Benefits

Enhanced customer experiences across every touchpoint, a more robust network, and access to more revenue opportunities.

 
 

Adapting and growing with the power of digital.  

When someone chooses to spend their disposable income on your service, the experience you provide needs to be show-stopping. And it needs to start before they’ve even stepped through your door. 

Are you sitting comfortably?

With 87 state of the art cinemas across the UK and Ireland, 843 ultra-high definition screens, and stadium seating in 98% of auditoriums, Vue know a thing or two about customer experience. But they also know it goes further – it’s about reaching beyond even the cinema-going public. And they managed to do it, with the power of digital. Nadine Thomson, Vue CIO, recognises that the industry has changed. She knows how important digital touchpoints are when it comes to customers’ interaction.

“The cinema industry has changed and more and more is digital.” she said. “Our challenge was to ensure we were able to move quickly in response to customer need. We wanted to embrace technology to streamline and personalise the customer journey and offer better service than our competition. We need to schedule the right amount of staff, and the right number of showings, with access to big data for resource planning.”

From scheduling and running films, to reducing queuing times and making it easier to buy tickets, it’s all made possible by Virgin Media Business’s ultrafast network and connectivity. 

A network with a starring role

An IPVPN with ADSL backup brings Vue’s sites together on a single, secure network, with a MIA service running from one of their main sites. That network allows collaboration across the most critical parts of the business: downloading films and trailers, taking payments, and running point-of-sale terminals.

It’s a backbone that allows for a slick operation, enhancing the customer journey everywhere from booking online or through a kiosk, to buying food and confectionary at the cinema. It also provides security and resilience for the network, vital given the massive amount of data that passes through the organisation.

“The last thing you want to worry about is your network. And we don’t need to worry about ours. It just works. And that is key to our performance as a business today and how we continue to develop in the future,” said Nadine.

When tickets for one of the most anticipated films of the year went on sale, Vue stood head and shoulders in front of the competition. In fact, theirs was the only mainstream cinema website that didn’t crash from the surge in traffic, with additional bandwidth kicking in to accommodate the spike. Customers didn’t even notice a difference.

That was down to a Virgin Media Business service team who worked with Vue to understand the service levels they needed during peak times. In effect, they made sure Vue had access to extra bandwidth during key times.

As testament to that fact, Virgin Media Business Faults Management Centre has incorporated the Vue film schedule into its systems, highlighting likely peaks in bandwidth usage in advance, and preparing them for even the biggest screening events. This kind of understanding that developed between the teams was evident when Vue were invited on-site for a special customer experience day, where they met the full Virgin Media Business team and even saw them in action. 

Mandy Webber, Service Manager at Virgin Media Business, enthuses: “We worked proactively with Vue to understand their business and the service levels they required to operate at their best. It’s helped them manage key events like surges in ticket sales and deliver a truly blockbuster customer experience.” 

More than just movies

Digital disruption is allowing businesses to flourish, something Vue knows all too well.  Gone are the days when cinemas existed purely to screen the latest films. Instead, digital is allowing organisations to open up and explore new revenue streams. It’s allowing them to take advantage of their existing estate, using high bandwidth, for example, to transform cinema spaces into conference venues during the day.

With 87 sites now connected to Virgin Media Business’s high bandwidth network, Vue can offer facilities to other companies, allowing these clients to stream to multiple screens across the country, share information, and collaborate more efficiently.

Nadine says, “Our core value is client entertainment, but there’s no denying that cinemas are great spaces – and very often can be vacant spaces, dependent on the time of the day. Using our existing estate has become an important focus for us and proves we can continue to develop the business using the power of digital.”

If the customer is king, then Vue can certainly show the industry a thing or two. Whether it’s bringing a family together on a Saturday afternoon, or an organisation together on a Monday morning, digital is at the heart of their strategy. Now that’s a strategy worth five stars.

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