Are Escape Rooms the Right Business for You?

We're going to take a wild guess here and say that you must have played a lot of escape room games, in order to want to open your own effort. Well, at least we hope you have. It's a great business if you think about the fact that you're bringing a group of people together to have a great time. But there are some important basic factors that you should consider before taking the plunge. Let's go through some of them.

A Love for the Game

On the first appearance, this does seem like a no-brainer. The reason we bring up something so painfully obvious is that many would-be business owners are looking for the next most popular thing in which to invest. And as of the last few years, escape room games are super-hot. So it's very possible for many people to simply jump on the bandwagon without even playing a single game. The problem with this is that your customers will see right through your fake business. Escape room games attract a lot of enthusiasts, and these types of people want to be surrounding themselves with like-minded escape room freaks. To that end, it will quickly become apparent that the owner is only along for the ride in the hope of making money.

It's one of those businesses that doesn't function if the only aim is about making money. Of course, the business needs to show a healthy profit, but not at the expense of loving the game itself. You need to be excited about these games, puzzles, and themes. If not, then you'll have a hard job selling something your heart isn't into.

The Brains for Business

Having said that just being a massive fan of the game isn't going to pay the bills. You'll need to have some sort of head for running a business. in the beginning, you'll need to sit down and work out a simple business plan. If you've never done this before, we suggest that you go educate yourself by watching some Youtube videos. Essentially, you'll need to plan out how you plan to manage your company, pay for it all, maybe take finance, build it and market it, organize workers, deal with payroll...the list is long and complex. Bt nothing you can't work your way through in good time. The main point is to conduct as much research as possible. Play at all the competition. Check their games, prices, and themes. Before you start, you'll need to be a mini expert in the genre of escape room games. But research is the key.

Knowledge About Legal Entities 

No matter where you're based, you'll be needing to set up some sort of legal entity so that your business type decides on your tax duty as well as all the paperwork necessary to operate as a company. Also, a great deal will depend on where you decide to place your business location. There will inevitably be zoning restrictions, parking requirements, and fire codes to follow. We suggest that 
you hire yourself an accountant and a lawyer as this will be a huge time saver at the end of the day.

Financing and a Budget for Your Escape Room Business

As with every new business, you'll need to come up with a business strategy as well as a financial plan. make sure that you have thought through all your tax obligations along with business expenses. Keep in mind that in the beginning, it'll just be you, handling virtually everything. As you make some money, then you can start to re-invest back into the business for things like the staff.

The Courage to Persuade

One thing many people starting a business fail to take into account is that you'll need to be able to get people onto your side. This is because your business is going to take a period of time before you start making any money. So you'll have to be able to dance with your suppliers, banks, friends, family, whoever is on the hook to help you out. One factor you might want to consider, and that's your personality. if you happen to be shy and withdrawn, then you might well struggle to persuade others to get involved or help you get started. The bottom line is that you have to first seel the business idea, and then once it's up and running, you'll need to sell the business itself to would-be customers. If you're shy, that might be an uphill struggle. Remember that you're the guy in charge, which means people must have faith in you.

The Dedication to Do the Dirty Work

Something that's quickly forgotten or simply overlooked is that you must ensure the premises are spotlessly clean. essentially you have the public traipsing through the door, playing in the rooms, using the toilet and common areas, all the day long. In the beginning, the show will be a one-man act, meaning that yours truly does the cleaning. This requires a massive effort, as it'll only be after you've closed, maybe 10 pm, that you'll be able to start the cleaning process. And it needs to be done to a higher standard than your own home. If you are lucky enough to have a lot of foot traffic, then trying to keep the floors and walls looking clean and fresh will certainly be taxing. Another point is that if something gets broken, get it repaired straight away, wise it'll be forgotten and the place will start to look like a half-broken dump. You have to stay on top of all these things. let them slip, and it'll be your undoing.

The Ability to Manage 

How are your people skills? Do you have any experience with managing people? To run your own escape business, you have to understand that it's the quality of the people that you employ that will make the business work, or see the end of it. It's not as simple as throwing an advertisement in the local paper and taking on the first who come through the door. It's imperative that your game masters are game master material. Not everyone can pull it off. And in these days of social media criticism, you really don't want to get it wrong. You are going to need to be an expert in hiring, motivating, managing work schedules, and all the rest of the stuff that goes with having a business with staff.

The Ability to Market Your Escape Room Business

The six-million-dollar question is how does your escape room business differentiate itself from all the others around you? Your business sinks or swims with a minimal number of daily bookings. And it's important that you turn every customer into a returning one. You will need to put on your thinking cap and think of new and exciting ways to market your escape room. Apart from the usual suspects of social media and having a website, you'll probably need to pound the streets at the beginning., handing out flyers and publicity. Persistence is key.

The Patience for an Escape Room Business

All businesses take some time to get off the ground. Between starting with yourself doing most things, to employing a team further down the line, it all takes a huge amount of patience and dedication on your part. Because of it's relatively low start-up cost, many escape room businesses go into profit very quickly indeed. but to steer it there, and keep it moving forwards, the business with need a huge amount of input from you. And a whole lotta love as well!