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Monday, January 24, 2022

Cinemas need to “urgently” rethink this experience, the study says.

LOS ANGELES. About 49% of moviegoers no longer buy tickets before the pandemic. Some of them, about 8 percent, are probably lost forever. To play the rest, multiplex owners must “urgently” rethink pricing and customer benefits in addition to focusing on coronavirus safety.

Those were some of the takeaways from a new study of the state of the U.S. movie theater business, which was worried before the pandemic – declining attendance, the proliferation of streaming services – and struggling to recover from a coronavirus forced closure in 2020. ticket sales in the United States and Canada were roughly $ 96 million, up from $ 181 million in the same period in 2019.

The study, published online on Monday, was commissioned by Quorum, a film research company led by David Herrin, former head of research at the United Talent Agency; Cultique, a consulting company run by longtime brand strategist Linda Ong; and Fanthropology, a fan acquisition firm. They intend to conduct a survey once a quarter.

“The study clearly shows that theaters are suffering as the pandemic has intensified, accelerated, amplified all the emerging trends that have already taken place,” said Ms Ong. “This definition of the ideal storm is not that different problems exist at the same time, but that they reinforce each other.”

Emerging trends? Increased ticket prices and reduced prices. Decrease in “empirical value”, including the perception that watching films has become a problem. A dilapidated state of shopping malls with many theaters. A generational shift towards streaming, gaming and other smartphone entertainment. “In the past, you may have come here from time to time, ignoring the flaws,” said Mr. Herrin. “Now you add security considerations to this mix and suddenly become a former moviegoer.”

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Research companies surveyed 2,528 people who visited the cinema in 2019. (Some bought a ticket once a week, others once a month. Others went “several” times a year.) About 51 percent of respondents said they bought tickets. in recent months, some of them have been attracted by cinema incentive programs. According to Mr. Herrin, these are mostly white males between the ages of 25 and 45 who live in cities. “Once you get outside of this demographic, you really start to lose people,” he said.

The 49 percent no longer buying tickets were more likely to support the requirement for participants to be vaccinated. Herrin said this predominantly female group is also more concerned about price and cost. However, he noted that about a third of them “hope” to return to theaters at some point. Changes likely to bring them back include: lower prices for classic concessions, newer locations, and control over phone use during movies.

“There must be a sense of urgency here,” said Mr. Herrin. “I don’t know how big the exhibition window is to bring these people back,” he added, using Hollywood jargon for the multiplex business.

“Likely to lose,” as the study identifies the 8 percent of respondents who said they didn’t buy a ticket during the pandemic and don’t see them coming back are low-income consumers. The researchers noted that there is a high proportion of Hispanic, Black and Asian women in the group.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
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