No pressure, piggy!
I hope you haven’t missed me too much.
I was just so traumatised after my dramatic and emotive user experience with the useless excuse for a customer service department at Superdrug, that I had to go into hiding before I punched someone.
I mean, what sort of imbecile cancels an order without letting the customer know?! I was so very….
Ok, ok. Sorry. I really am over it and calm now. Let’s move swiftly on.
So, here I am, finally thinking that I am coming out of my furious fog and that all is right with the world once again, when I come face to face with the news that Britain’s future may well be hanging on the success of one little pig?!
I fear I may have caught something off my drug/cosmetic store tormentors and be on some kind of super drugs myself, because surely this cannot be true?!
Don’t get me wrong, I love pigs. And who doesn’t love a bacon sandwich?! (apologies to any Muslims or Orthodox Jews reading this).
But to focus on the swine in relation to the future of our fine country?
For a brief moment I began to wonder if David Cameron had taken over as Prime Minister again.
Surely someone is just being a ham and having a laugh?!
No, apparently not.
And ok, I am exaggerating somewhat.
Peppa Pig isn’t going to relieve any Brexit woes, or put paid to the rubbish weather that’s battering our shores.
But UK-based FTSE 100 Group, Merlin, are hoping that the talking, walking bundle of bacon is going to revive fortunes for them.
The entertainment giant – which owns and operates the London Eye, Madam Tussauds and Alton Towers – is planning a tie in with the popular kid’s character after they have been hit where it hurts (in the bank) by 2017’s poor summer, as well as the spate of terrorist attacks plaguing Europe.
I am assuming they gathered customer comments and user feedback before making the decision to put Peppa on the books, otherwise it could all turn out to be complete hog wash.
Don’t get me wrong, the episode when she hangs up on her bestie Susie Sheep because she’s peeved that Susie can whistle – whereas she can’t – is vaguely amusing, but I don’t think myself or anyone else over the age of 7 is going to be trampling over people in a rush to spend time with Peppa and pals.
Of course, it’s the kiddos that get Mum and Dad to hand over their hard-earned cash and Merlin are in the entertainment business, so maybe there is something in it.
All we can hope is that it doesn’t start Piggate 2017…. We don’t want any hazing involving poor innocent Peppa, if you please.
Just because former PM Mr. Cameron reputedly waved a certain part of his anatomy in front of a (dead) pig, it doesn’t make it right. There is someone in that costume, you know. (Apologies to anyone that thought Peppa was real).
Unfortunately, the company may be robbing Peter to pay Paul because, whilst the Peppa Deal is seemingly in the bag, Merlin – who have experienced a 20% plunge in shares – are cutting £100m of investment in existing attractions because of business pressures.
The new addition to the empire – which will include Peppa themed attractions and accommodation – will not actually directly benefit the UK (other than Merlin’s coffers) because there is already a Peppa Pig World in Hampshire (who knew?!), so all the new attractions will be overseas.
Hmmmm, not a lot of British customer satisfaction or relief in UK tourism pressure there then.
Correct me if I am wrong, but I would be tempted to hazard a guess that they didn’t employ a user experience consultant for this one.
“So, you’ve experienced a reduction in footfall and difficult summer trading at your UK attractions, yes? Well, of course the solution is simple: ignore the end user experience on home turf and concentrate elsewhere instead.”
Not quite what we here at The Monachie Project would recommend, that’s for sure.
Granted, times are tough here in Britain because of all the Brexit uncertainty. And, as are Merlin themselves, many businesses are experiencing cost pressures because of UK employment legislation.
So, to a degree, it makes sense to reallocate spending and change tack on your productivity strategy.
The problem, however, is that you just can’t abandon your existing loyal customers and turn your attention elsewhere.
Granted, Merlin are also introducing a Bear Grylls Adventure site which will open in Birmingham next year, so they are not totally forgetting about their UK audience, but not every business is in a position to spread themselves so wide when times are tough.
If your company is torn as to which way you should turn, get in touch and let us carry out our unique user experience research to give you valuable insights into the right path to take.
Of course, whether that will include animated farm animals or not remains to be seen!