It’s ZorkFest weekend and we’re all in Atlantic City! I’m skipping a Pai Gow session at Bally’s right now so I can gather any interesting news from Las Vegas that I can find. Writing about Las Vegas is fun but it’s, even more, fun when there’s a casino 30 seconds away.
The weeks after Thanksgiving and before Christmas used to be among the least busy in Las Vegas. People tend to spend their time and money getting ready for Christmas and other holidays. The National Finals Rodeo (NFR) has changed the quiet period as many cowboys and cowgirls descend on Las Vegas for nearly two weeks of the “quiet time.”
National Finals Rodeo
If you’re a fan of rodeo or country music you probably know that the National Finals Rodeo begins on December 7 and continues through December 16. The rodeo itself traditionally sells out every night. Almost every kind of entertainment for the first couple of weeks of December will be for rodeo fans. The sportsbook at The Mirage even closes at night to make way for some cowboy oriented events. Las Vegas is a bit different than usual for the next couple of weeks.
New Year’s Eve Security
New Year’s Eve is one of the busiest night’s in Las Vegas. There are typically more than 300,000 people visiting Las Vegas to party and/or watch the fireworks on the Vegas Strip at midnight. It’s a something to see at least once in your life if you love Las Vegas and enjoy being part of events with large crowds.
New Year’s Eve is one of the few times of year where the Vegas Strip is closed to cars. If you’re in town for the night you should know that backpacks and strollers are not allowed on the Vegas Strip once it’s closed to cars. Downtown Las Vegas will also have increased security as well. ABC affiliate KTNV has more information.
Tourism Numbers Down And Up in October
According to the Las Vegas Sun, the number of visitors to Las Vegas dropped by 4.2% in October. This might seem strange after the report last week that traffic at McCarran Airport broke a record in October. While convention business rose, overall room occupancy dipped by 2.7% according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA). The main reason for the decrease could be that daily auto traffic was down by 1.6% in October.
According to the annual LVCVA Visitor Profile we know that the majority of tourists stay on the Vegas Strip when visiting Las Vegas. Gambling revenue shows a similar downward trend where most tourists visit in Las Vegas. Gaming revenue fell by 6% on the Vegas Strip in October. Meanwhile, all other local-centric sections of Las Vegas showed an increase in revenue. Stiffs and Georges has a more detailed breakdown of gaming revenue for the month.
Here are a few extra nuggets if you’re looking for some off the radar news.
- Penn National Gaming still thinking about buying Pinnacle Entertainment. This would open a few more cities around the country to a casino with a players club connected to Las Vegas. Read more here.
- Bellagio was robbed…again. Read more here.
- Blackstone refinancing Cosmopolitan again. Read more here.
- Sometimes the headline is fun enough to share the article. “Caesars mortgages its future with Harrah’s Las Vegas dirt sale.” Read the witty titled article here.
- You probably know that Palms is undergoing a major renovation. Eater has more information on the future of the new Clique operated lounges. Ghostbar will become the Opal Room and Social will become Camden Cocktail Lounge. Read more here.
- IG is for the kidz. People on Instagram love the hotels in Las Vegas. See the list at the bottom of this article for more information.
Las Vegas Marketing And Analytics
I was a marketing major in college and spent most of my life working in the field. I’m as fascinated by marketing as I am about Las Vegas. This passion often gives me a different understanding of how and why casino operators change policies and strategies.
We may be getting worked up about Las Vegas changing on the surface there’s a lot more going on behind the scenes that affect visitors. While we’re reading puff pieces about casinos targeting millennials over here, casino operators like MGM Resorts are over there plotting how to extract more money from your pocket. Both affect us but in different ways.
While new attractions are changing the face of Las Vegas, so are the policies. By now we know that every inch of land must generate revenue for casino corporations. They’re doing just that by digging deep into the analytics of every customer. While all of the larger casino companies all do this, MGM Resorts International actually shows the public what they’re doing.
The expenses and cutbacks we’ve seen from the Profit Growth Plan (PGP) aren’t just implemented randomly. Customers are studied and educated choices are made on what can be changed. This article sheds a little light on how MGM Resorts International uses marketing data and analytics.
Caesars Entertainment is deeply involved with a company called Salesforce. This company was a major part of their most recent investor meeting. Here’s a case study from Salesforce that discusses their relationship with Caesars Entertainment.
Everything changes over time. The changes might seem a bit less drastic when we understand how and why the companies make the changes. We may not like the developments but understanding the reasoning sometimes helps soften the blow.