Industry News

AI causes a splash at Sea Life

Online ticket sales at Merlin Entertainment’s Sea Life Scheveningen aquarium in the Dutch capital, The Hague, have doubled following the introduction of an Artificial Intelligence ticketing platform through a partnership with Convious.

Maaike Schröeder, Sea Life Scheveningen’s marketing manager, told Blooloop that the AI technology has allowed the venue’s operators to tailor the experiences of website visitors by measuring consumer behaviour more effectively.

“Convious contacted us, saying they had something new, so we said okay, let’s test it,” says Schröeder. “They had, in essence, invented a system whereby the customer can name their own price. Dutch people seem to love it.”

About 75 per cent of the theme park’s visitors are Dutch, the report added.

The system differentiates between new and returning customers and considers the traffic source, cookie data and online movements on the website itself, whilst noting a number of other variables that could affect behaviour, such as the weather.

“Convious know so much about the website visitors, so can adapt to their click behaviour,” Schröeder added. “People want to be in charge of what they pay for an attraction. So it actually works well for us, and works well for the customer. So we are very happy.

“They started in two attractions in Holland, and now it is getting more and more popular. People see how well it works for us, and now other attractions are copying it, too.”

Kevin Westermeijer, the chief commercial officer and co-founder of Amsterdam-based Convious, added: “We started less than two years ago, as our own platform, under a different name: Ticketoo. It was a discreet dynamic way to sell surplus tickets for theme parks, zoos and aquariums. We allowed the consumers to name their own price for tickets.”

When the company switched names from Ticketoo to Convious, Westermeijer said that the platform “started to develop everything powered by artificial intelligence”. He added: “We saw the results improve over successive weeks.

“Our customers decide what they want to reach as their average ticket price for the day, and then our pricing API keeps calculating what prices we can sell tickets for now in order to reach, for instance, an average ticket price of €15.

“There are several venues now which have started with personalised pricing. From now, we really want to extend our customer base, mainly outside of the Netherlands.”