Mark Dirks

The U.S.S. Beacon

Est. Reading Time: 3 minutes

As a business owner of 10 years now, I seem to see everything from a business perspective.It’s just how my brain works now, good or bad.From the moment my family started researching a cruise to the moment we boarded the plane for the return trip, business was in gear all around us.

It started with the web.The website marketed the ships, cabins, destinations, excursions, family fun, and all-inclusiveness through content, video, pictures, testimonials and I was always one-click away from a customer service rep.We became excited about all this and made a purchase.But did the sale stop there?Absolutely not.Now that we were “in”, we now had special access to what I’ll call “accessories”…excursion pricing, upgrades, special events to plan for, transportation, etc.Yes, we were reminded that there was “limited-supply” of some things (so hurry and buy!).There were also ways to “make the trip easy”…all with some additional fees (of course).So we booked some excursions, reserved shuttles back and forth and registered for events.Cha-ching.

Oh it didn’t stop there.What was I thinking?3000 tourists on a ship for 7 days with daily access via get-togethers and an intercom system!This has to be a marketing person’s fantasy.So, put jewelry, perfume and souvenir stores on board.Sell. Sell. Sell.

Need a tux for formal night?Rent one.

Want to get your bags checked directly to the airport?Extra fee.

Want to play Bingo?Charge it to your room.

Want unlimited soft drinks for your kids?Buy a drink card.

How about a nice relaxing massage?Use your “sail & sign” card!

Pictures?Paparazzi-like staff were everywhere! All the pictures were on display on the promenade deck.Take one or more home for a small fee.

It was a great trip, so don’t get me wrong.I’m not complaining, just observing, admiring (and now blogging afterward)…watching 1000 crew members work this business, this floating shopping mall, with precision.Even the shuttle bus back to the airport dropped us off at a spot between two terminals, rather than at the main door, such that skycaps and baggage handlers could get in on the action.

Like it or not, it was a business work of art.

As corny as this may sound, it is somewhat analogous with Beacon’s mission.The U.S.S. Beacon navigates the waters of the worldwide web, showcasing its customer’s products & services to visitors that come and go each week, providing a sturdy and secure infrastructure for all aboard, while guiding visitors via many channels to businesses managed on board and in ports of call.

dirks family

website design, search engine optimization, ecommerce development