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Gladstone and Mediablaze launch new suite of digital products for the leisure industry

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Digital experience agency Mediablaze and Gladstone, a supplier of leisure management software in the UK and Ireland, have unveiled a new digital product.

Over the last 18 months, Mediablaze, as product strategy, design and engineering partner, has brought to life the creation of a new membership purchasing, booking and member profile application for Gladstone’s more than 400 leisure operator clients.

“This project is an example of an enterprise-level solution. It is solving the wide, varied and complex needs of the leisure industry for operators of all shapes and sizes. It was made possible not only because of the close collaboration between the Mediablaze and Gladstone product teams, but also due to the invaluable contribution of the operators making up the Special Interest Group, representing the needs of the industry,” said Tim Dodd, Mediablaze’s head of digital.

“We have worked closely with Gladstone for more than six years to create a series of custom user experiences using their APIs. That relationship coupled with our experience in the active lifestyle space has really served us well for this product launch.”

What makes this launch outstanding is the vast number of venues, facilities and outlets it services. Gladstone, as a partner of hundreds of operators and owners of leisure centres, sports facilities, universities and health clubs across the country, required a product that could adapt depending on what is required of it at any given moment.

Dodd said: “It has to meet the needs of any leisure operator in the industry; it could be a single site, a university gym or a large chain of publicly operated facilities. All of those wants and needs are very different so we needed to create a product that was going to be flexible enough to scale and fit the operator landscape.”

Phil Davies, chief technology officer, Gladstone added: “The idea is that the customer can connect with their centre via the digital application. This enables them to quickly and efficiently discover and book from a wide range of options which creates a stronger customer experience. This approach reduces friction and administration overhead for repeated day-to-day tasks.

“The member profile bridges the experience of a prospective new member joining and a regular booker. It allows the user to self-service, helping to reduce this administrative overhead on the operator. They’re able to administer their personal details, check the status of their membership, see what their direct debit collections are and link-up with their family’s profiles.

Of the working relationship with Mediablaze, Davies added: “Over the past six years we’ve built an extremely strong and collaborative relationship which is paramount when creating a digital experience that truly works and serves our customers. The digital experience will continue to play an ever-increasing role and I’m looking forward to building on these foundations in the months and years ahead.”

The innovation doesn’t stop with this initial launch. “Gladstone’s clients have a crucial role to play here,” explained Claire Rollins, managing director, Gladstone. “By collaborating with Gladstone, they have the opportunity to help prioritise features and guide the direction of these customer-facing products and how they will evolve over the course of the next 10 years.”

Mediablaze is set to continue to support Gladstone as the product rolls out and new features are added.