Q&A: Gift experience trends

Simon Holland

Simon is the news and research reporter at Existem. Previously a technology journalist, he now spends his time investigating both future and developing trends in performance marketing whilst producing editorial content for performancein.com

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Q&A: Gift experience trends

How long has Wish.co.uk been operating and what buying trends have you noticed in this time?


We launched July 2011. Our big sellers are zombie experiences - we sell 95% of the UK's zombie experience tickets, and we've just launched a new zombie experience in London.

 

What was the inspiration behind your take on the gift experience concept?

Our aim was simple: to make buying our products as much fun as the experiences themselves.

I'd been an affiliate operating in the sector for about six years, and could see more and more opportunities for interesting ways to sell these products.

How does Wish.co.uk set itself apart from the usual purveyors of driving experiences and spa days?

As well as amusing and delighting with our witty copy and PR work, we aim to compete on the same terms as our competitors on price & service.

So we offer free delivery, a best price guarantee and VIP customer service.

We've support staff on live chat during office hours, which means customers get instant help rather than sending an email and hoping for the best 24 hours later.

What's with the UK's zombie fascination? Is it all down to AMC's The Walking Dead?

It's certainly not a UK-only fascination. We've had press coverage in 20+ countries, and have people flying from all over the world - US, Norway, France, Spain - to take part at Zombie Shopping Mall.

The Walking Dead has certainly helped, but it's more of a widespread phenomenon than that.

Other than the zombie experiences that have pride of place on your home page, what other alternative gift experiences do you hope to provide?

We do a lot of horror themed stuff, like Vampire Hunters and Wolfmen.

We've also just launched a jet pack experience and SWAT training.

We're just deciding which of these to go on for the staff xmas party.

Finally, watch this space - we've something very exciting launching first week of November.

How do you intend on competing with the highly discounted gift experiences on daily deal sites?

We're the exact opposite to daily deals sites. We're aiming to build a brand that consumers love and are happy to spend money with, rather than to rinse customers once with phoney savings on teeth whitening kits.

We tend not to focus on the same products that are heavily discounted on sites like Groupon. Nobody goes to Groupon to browse the rich range of products or for the customer experience - they go because there's one deal that happens to catch their eye, until they read the small print. Net result is that customer dissatisfaction is through the roof.

What's the next big thing in the gift experience sector?

Instant gratification - we offer evouchers, PayPal payments and a site built for social media.