Childhood is full to the brim with new experiences: new skills are learned and new environments are explored. As adults we cut down massively on our new experiences, which gives the brain a break from storing new information, and soon our weeks fly by.
Mystery UK develops new experiences for you to enjoy and challenge yourself with. Right now you're likely getting up at the same time every day for work, listening to the same jokes, eating the same lunch, going to the same bar with Janet from HR and going home to the same boxset.
This is your opportunity to try another door. In the morning you'll receive a text saying "be at Waterloo Station for 7pm”; once you've confirmed you're there, you'll receive details of a unique, exclusive event tailored especially for you.
It could be a private stand-up show with packed lunches and drinks in a secret corner of Hyde Park.
It could be private Russian tuition over London's finest coffee in London's favourite patisserie.
It could be anything, but it will be new.
We've been implementing this schedule randomisation for each other and our partners for years now, and there's been a radical change in our outlook. We find ourselves more interested in the world the more we go on, and have learnt so much and made great friends along the way.
We're launching our business in the UK's most diverse and exciting city, but plan to expand nationwide. That’s why we need your help to build a sturdy website and mobile experience, so that signing up and receiving messages is super easy. Our website and app development is going to cost £10K.
Although we plan to publicise this Kickstarter campaign, we'll need a team of PR agents to help manage our brand, and get us in the public eye. We've been offered a generous and far reaching campaign for £25K spread over a year.
To create a series of phenomenal experiences every month, we'll need a float to cover any unexpected expenses. For that we'll need £5K. The campaign itself is going to cost us upwards of £3.5K too, including Kickstarter fees.
We surveyed 100 people, of varying ages and backgrounds, to find out about their lives and activities. We asked first of all whether they're looking to try something new:
86% said they were looking for new experiences, and 14% said they weren't. (Although we'd argue the 14% don't know what is available to them.)
We asked them what made it hard to find new things to do:
We asked them how hard it was to find new things to do:
78% of people find it hard to find new things to do. So we asked them why:
We received a number of reasons!
"Listings show the same things" - have you noticed that the same events are available of dozens of different platforms, usually at the same price too? We develop events that often don't even appear on event platforms, catered for the individual. We find the niche and unique things to do, so you don't have to trawl the listings.
"Don't have time to organise" - People in London often say they don't have the time to organise events and activities for themselves, and often rely on last minute choices from event listings, usually paying a higher price! We organise everything for the customer: we book, pay and tell you where to go. All you have to do is turn up on time, and pick up your tickets, or introduce yourself to the organiser.
"Tickets are expensive in London" - We have a set price of £20 a month, or £35 for two people, and we guarantee an exceptional activity or event. Theatre tickets can be upwards of £80, and events can often cost more than an expensive meal out. With our connections, and 15 years of event planning experience, we can promise a new and exciting experience for a fraction of that!
"All of the above" - 11.5% of the people who responded to our survey said that it is in fact a mixture of all of these issues that led them to miss out on these experiences.
"Other" - We got a bunch of other reasons from our survey takers too. People are often unable to do what they want to do when they want to do it - which is why we open up a number of dates each month, to make sure the customer gets the opportunity to join in the fun. Some also get a lot of last minute availability, making it harder to book something to do at a reasonable price.
Risks and challenges
Out of the hundreds of people we've talked this over with, most have been ecstatic about the idea, and we’ve taken on board some great suggestions. We're confident of plenty of interest in our offer when we open for business - people ready to take that step into the unknown. We see the main risk to Mystery UK as being a low sign up rate, however luckily this will only mean less man hours for the expert events team here in London. Whether we're serving 10 people or 10 thousand people a month, the company can't run at a loss, and won't too, as we can always organise a great event regardless of attendee numbers!