This guide will show you the basics to start your laser tag business.
Between 2014 and 2019, the market size of the Laser Tag Arenas industry in the US has grown an average of 4.4% per year, faster than the economy overall. With consumer spending expected to increase, this is the perfect time to start a laser tag business.
Whether you’re starting a stand-alone laser tag facility, building a family entertainment center, or adding an arena to your existing center, this definitive guide will give you everything you need to get started.
Are you ready to begin your journey into starting a successful laser tag business? Continue reading below.
The good news is you don’t need a college degree or business experience to become successful with laser tag. However, you do need to evaluate yourself and determine why you want to start a business or add laser tag to your attraction mix.
Before we embark on this endeavor, here are a few more critical questions to ask yourself:
Once you’ve completed this self-assessment, you’re ready to move forward with the steps to setting up your business. Here’s a guide to setting up your business entity.
In the following sections, you’ll get guidance to write your business plan.
The most crucial step in starting your laser tag business is to conduct market research, so you measure the revenue potential for laser tag in your market. Some of the critical factors that determine the long-term success of your business include:
If you’re new to the amusement industry, it’s a good idea to get a feasibility study and market analysis done by a trusted professional.
Now that you have selected a location, you’re ready to design your laser tag arena—where the magic happens. Aside from your laser tag equipment, your arena design plays a pivotal role in the gameplay, or how your guests interact with the game.
Instead of your conventional laser tag equipment that involves simply tagging other players, look for manufacturers with interactive elements that you can integrate with your arena. Here are a few examples:
A Base Station is a wall-mounted device with lights, sound, and voice that act as a target for players to shoot. For an additional dimension to your interactivity, look for Video Base Stations where players can pick up “Power-ups”, reload ammunition, capture bases, and run exclusive games like Capture the Flag, Quiz Show, or Laser Ball.
A lighting system like Crystal Lighting and Spotlights integrated with your laser tag software, and Base Station enhances the experience. Contrary to static lighting, your dynamic light interacts with the players to add an extra level of excitement.
Other components of the interactive arena include Energy Gates and Laser Shooters, which significantly expand options for laser tag games. When these components are combined with creative concepts and designs in your arena, you create a unique differentiation in your market.
As you plan the layout of your arena, the key sections include:
Some additional variables that affect the players’ experience include the shape of the arena, the height of your ceiling, and whether it’s a single level or multi-level. You’ll want to account for any guests who may feel claustrophobic along with restrictions for multi-level structures for your building.
Finally, a key consideration for your layout is the Game Flow. The Game flow in laser tag is the ability to get customers in and out of the arena as smoothly as possible, which reduces downtime. Here’s an illustration for the ideal Game Flow:
For a more in-depth look at designing a winning laser tag center, be sure to download our free guide.
As many players know, not all laser tag equipment is created equal. The criteria for selecting your laser tag equipment should include:
To learn more about the specifications and features of Genesis, the award-winning laser tag system, download the brochure here.
Now that you know what to budget for, you’re ready to get funding for your laser tag business. Like financing other ventures, you can invest your own money or get angel investors willing to fund your dreams.
Another source of investment capital is to crowdsource on sites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo. While your chances of getting your entire business funded by customers are rare, running a campaign can help you gauge demand in your market.
The most common way of getting financing is through lenders like SLS Lending and Live Oak Bank, who are very knowledgeable in the industry. In many cases, they will be looking at feasibility studies and market research to determine the loan amount.
Now that you have your center coming together, you want to account for your business’s daily operations. To keep up with the demand from your customers, here are the core functions of running your business:
There are numerous resources and software in the industry to handle every aspect of your core functions, including online party reservations, digital waivers, and debit card systems. Just keep in mind that technology enables your strategy of reducing customer friction at every touchpoint.
By putting yourself in your customers’ shoes, you’ll be able to map every interaction to create and document internal processes for your staff. To become a data-driven fun center, you’ll want to establish Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) and metrics to track opportunities to improve your business.
As you prepare for your grand opening, it’s always a good idea to have a soft launch to iron out all the kinks before opening up the floodgates. Remember that you should still learn from mistakes and continuously make improvements. That’s what the best laser tag and entertainment centers do.
Congratulations! Now that you know everything needed to start a laser tag business connect with one of our laser tag consultants for a consultation. You’ll get the expert guidance you need to create a profitable and successful business.
To get more in-depth guides most relevant for your stage in the process, visit our resource center for free downloads.
Our team of experts are also eager to help you turn your dreams into reality. Request a free consultation today.
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