HOW TO DESIGN YOUR OWN ESCAPE ROOM
Just follow a simple plan.
1) Creating an escape room starts from an idea
. This part of creating an escape room is probably the simplest. Free your imagination, as this is the only option to think up a theme. Your own taste will be a judge. The idea should be thrilling, funny or both. It’s not bad to take inspiration from your favorite books or films. Keep in mind what themes attract your target audience. Kids, for example, will love Cinderella-themed escape rooms, but adults will not.
2) Before opening an escape room, put some details to the project. Just google 10 people or objects that are connected the theme. Write them down to a piece of paper. The list will contain main characters and elements of your world. For instance, if there is a room on the theme of “House MD”, then even his stick could be a nice option.
3) How to create an escape room idea & make a storyboard. It will be an engine that pushes the game into play. This part’s importance is pretty obvious, but many people forget about it. The only rule remains the same: be creative. Don’t use cliché scenarios, as everybody is already tired of them. There is also a small nuance: if the setting goes on in just one location, it will be easier to manage.
4) Create an organizational chart. The step’s main goal is to put the complete story together. Write down all the timeline points and give each of them a description. Each note will be a puzzle or challenge. A little advice: put as many details as possible. Turning timelines into puzzles is not easy, so you’ll probably spend some time on that.
5) Select puzzles for challenges. If you don’t know what puzzles to use, then you can search for them on the Internet. Sometimes there are ideas so simple and so genius, that you will regret somebody came up with the idea before you.
6) Simplify the game and test it. The step is important because necessary changes will be obvious and you won’t have to spend too much time on accessories and details if something goes wrong. Invite as many teams as possible, as this is the only option to find out all disadvantages of the escape room before creating an escape room.
WHAT EQUIPMENT IS NEEDED TO CREATE THE ESCAPE ROOM
As we have mentioned before, to do a custom escape room is impossible without proper equipment
. Players will have much more enjoyable experience, and you won’t have to do too much by yourself. All the equipment can be divided into 4 groups.
COMMAND AND CONTROL SOFTWARE
Room management software allows game masters to track players via camera system, communicate and interact with them. You can send hints, show countdown timer, add some themed music, trigger some digital props, connect buttons in the room, control the lights via command center. There are too many features to describe all of them. The software is a suite that most businesses rely on, as it saves lots of money and increases productivity.
PUZZLES AND GADGETS
If you don’t want to think up puzzles by yourself, you can buy them too. It’s pretty convenient, because there are lots of them on the market, so it won’t be a problem to find a product that is suitable for a specific theme. Puzzles made by professional engineers are entertaining and good-looking, and that’s probably the most important qualities.
The majority of puzzles sold on the Internet is plug-and-play. Good electronics and engineering skills are not necessary to set up them. All the goods are made in such a way that even inexperienced person could understand how everything is done.
Gadgets are used to make our lives easier. The same goes with escape rooms. The number of goods in this section is really high. Moreover, if you have a great idea and you can’t find out how to create it into a real escape room, then experts are here to help you. They will create any equipment you think up of for a reasonable price. They will create any equipment you think up of for a reasonable price. This is quite a good investment to open your escape room, as making it by yourself will take a few weeks if not months.
CONNECTING AND SET UP EQUIPMENT
Equipment for connecting all the objects in an escape room might seem hard for most people. However, everything in this aspect depends on the equipment. If its quality is high and a clear instruction is provided, then setting up puzzles will be one of the easiest tasks you will face while creating an escape room.
Keep in mind, that high-quality connecting equipment is not only a matter of convenience. Even people’s safety is dependent on it. Some cheap wires can be a reason for short circuit or even fire in the building. That’s why you should take choosing all the electric stuff with the utmost seriousness. Check if the equipment works properly right after you buy it.
COSTUMES AND DECORATIONS
While making the perfect escape room all the nuances must be taken into account. Nobody wants to go to a place that doesn’t have a unique atmosphere. Costumes for actors are a huge part of it, as poor apparel can ruin even the most pleasant experience. If you were a regular player, would you come back to the escape room where the company cuts corners even on clothing by using DIY props? Probably not.
Decorations are the thing that makes escape rooms special. Imagine the room with none of them. The experience will don’t be different from some games on PC or mobile phone. Players should be convinced that they are living their lives not playing. That’s the main goal of all the companies in this field.
At this stage we probably have ready and operating room. Now let’s talk about more business aspects.
HOW TO MAKE ESCAPE ROOM BUSINESS MORE PROFITABLE
If you want to increase your income, the best way to do that is to open several escape rooms. Games should be different in them. There is a huge probability that a satisfied customer will try another room, as well. Here are some factors that affect a profit:
• Location. It’s pretty simple that businesses in populous areas are much more advantageous, as the number of potential clients is higher.
• The games available. Don’t be afraid to be creative. It’s a bad idea to just copy other rooms. The more unusual idea you have, the more people will be interested in them.
• Staff. There will be lots of negative reviews if your staff is not qualified enough. Employ only those people who seem hardworking and artistic. Let them provide you with their own opinion on the company.
• Decorations. Your room mustn’t look cheap. Players won’t try it, and they will probably tell their friends about all the negative aspects.
-Discounts. You’ll lose some money the short term, but this will result in the increase of your income later. Try coupons, bonus programs and casual discounts.
• Marketing. A profit largely depends on how much potential clients know about the business. Don’t even think about saving money on this part.
HOW TO ADVERTISE AND PROMOTE THE ESCAPE ROOM QUEST
Opening an escape room quest won’t be profitable without the right marketing strategy. There will be no way for potential customers to find out about your company. As a result, you will fail. Take care of the following aspects to attract more customers.
The first thing a player sees is your site, so you need to take care of it. It should look modern, all the necessary information must be presented, including pricing, working hours, photos and reviews. A potential client needs to think not opportunities he has, not about money he will spend for that.
Don’t let inexperienced specialists make your website, otherwise, it will be useless. Pay attention to SEO, so that the site will be on the top of Google and Bing while someone looks for an escape room. Spend some time testing all the features presented on it in order not to lose clients because of minor mistakes.
Most booking systems require a monthly fee. Prices can be both fixed or based on revenue. Make sure that a booking system integrates with banking services. This feature is really convenient for customers, as they can make reservations in a matter of seconds. Provide the service with contact information, including your website, phone and email. The most popular sites specializing in booking are:
• Escape Assist;
There are millions of users in social networks. A huge number of them is your potential clients. They surf Facebook, Instagram or any other site and see your advertisement. If it’s creative enough, they will be interested in trying it. Presence in social media guarantees a steady flow of customers. Every big company has business accounts in such websites and they don’t seem to be disappointed with it.
Discount sites are a great option for a few months after you create your escape room business start up. The most important advantage of them is speed. You will get immediate reaction from customers, as most people don’t like to spend much money on entertainment. As a result of promotions, your potential customers get an opportunity to save some money, while you form huge clients’ base.
There are some disadvantages, as well. If discounts last for too long, they might not be economically sustainable anymore, because you have an opportunity to attract full-priced customers. Take track of ROI (Return on Investment) in order to find out how much money you get and lose out of a specific promotion. Decide on the future strategy after examining everything.
Some escape room owners prefer offering services at lower prices on particular weekdays. Escape rooms are usually not busy on Monday, as most people return to work after a weekend. You can take advantage out of this fact by just choosing a strategy wisely.
OFFLINE ESCAPE ROOM MARKETING IDEAS
Promoting an escape room offline is usually less effective in comparison with online marketing, but it’s a lot cheaper, so it’s worth trying some strategies for a short period. Don’t forget to track the ROI in order to find out whether it’s is efficient in your case. Offline marketing includes the following strategies:
• Handing out flyers;
• Ads on billboards;
• Mass media advertisements;
• Spots on radio.
Moreover, you are free to choose the most creative ways to build an escape room business. However, some businessmen prefer buying ready-made packages
. Here are some advantages of doing that:
• You’ll need less time to set up a room.
• The number of features is huge.
• It’s much easier to organize everything.
• You don’t need to think up puzzles.
• Such escape rooms are equipped with customizable software.
• The goods you buy will pay off fast.
• Some ideas are so sophisticated, that you cannot make them a reality by yourself.
Buying an escape room business is more convenient, however. They are a bit more expensive, as well. The first thing that potential customers ask is “How much does it cost to buy an escape room?”. The prices vary. They depend on the features included, software, puzzles, decorations, etc. Check our catalogue
to find options that are suitable for you.
Whether you choose to buy an escape room or build one by yourself, planning everything thoroughly is a key to success. Write down all of your expenses, try new escape room advertising ideas and decide whether a chosen strategy is worth trying. Other people’s experience can help you a lot with that, so keep eye on forums dedicated to the subject. Good luck!