Hospitality Highlights: 10th October 2023
Top Marketing News
- Instagram Introduces New Interactive Features to Boost User Engagement
- Google’s Latest Move to Combat Gmail Spam
- NoLo Labeling: Will it Persuade Consumers to Choose No and Low Alcohol Drinks?
- TikTok Kicks Off Spooky Season with Creepy Content
- Verified Accounts Only: X Posts Can Now Restrict Replies
🍽️ Restaurant and F&B News
- Fast Casual Industry Poised for 11.5% Growth by 2027
- Intelligent Fermentation at Rioja Winery
- This AI-powered Grill Cooks Food Up to 10x Faster
- KFC Loses No. 2 Chicken Chain Spot in the USA.
- Starbucks Develops Climate-Resistant Coffee Seeds for Sustainability
Hotel and Travel News
- MICHELIN Guide’s Latest Distinction: The MICHELIN Key for Hotels
- Travel Experts Dismiss Sustainability as Key Factor in Holiday Choices
- Marriott International Unveils Aggressive Three-Year Growth Plan
- UNWTO Bridges Agriculture, Gastronomy, and Tourism for Sustainable Development
- Lifestyle Hotels: The Latest Trend in Hospitality
Instagram Introduces New Interactive Features to Boost User Engagement
Instagram is launching four new features targeting Gen-Z users. The new tools include
- Multiple close-friend groups for sharing stories.
- Birthday shout-outs to celebrate users.
- Voice recordings and selfie videos for the Notes feature.
- New ways for creators and young users to express themselves through music.
I can see the Birthday shout-outs being a really useful tool for event marketing and for recognising loyal customers on their birthdays. These moves seem to be aimed at taking away Snap’s younger market share with voice notes and more ways to express their creativity.
Google’s Latest Move to Combat Gmail Spam
Google is putting new requirements for bulk email senders to reduce spam and improve email security. Bulk senders, defined as those who send over 5,000 messages daily to Gmail accounts, must comply by February 2024.
The update includes enforcing a clear spam rate threshold below 0.3% and allowing Gmail users to unsubscribe from marketing emails with one click.
Requests to unsubscribe from such emails must then be processed within two days by the sender.
If you’re using tools that bulk message Gmail customers, it’s important to start analysing and implementing new processes now; February will be here before you know it!
NoLo Labeling: Will it Persuade Consumers to Choose No and Low Alcohol Drinks?
The UK government is considering increasing the threshold for beverages labelled “alcohol-free” to reduce alcohol consumption.
The proposal aims to promote and make non-alcoholic alternatives more readily available and affordable, catering to the growing market for no and low-alcohol (NoLo) drinks.
In addition to labelling reforms, improved marketing and better consumer knowledge of NoLo options are encouraged. The Advertising Standards Authority has lifted restrictions on ads that promote low-alcohol drinks as preferable alternatives to standard alcoholic beverages.
Advertising restrictions being lifted could have a knock-on effect on social media channels, allowing venues and restaurants to advertise mocktails without the possibility of running foul of alcohol laws.
TikTok Kicks Off Spooky Season with Creepy Content
TikTok is getting into the Halloween spirit with a range of seasonal effects and Halloween hashtags. Users can experiment with spooky effects like “random Halloween eyeliner” and “random Halloween face” to create their next look.
The app also hosts the “Spooky Halloween” challenge, where creators can design spooky effects, backgrounds, or characters for a chance to win up to $2,500.
Immersive marketing isn’t the future of marketing; it’s now. With Gen Z coming into their spending power, it’s time to strategise to engage them fully. My Gen Z profile guide will be published exclusively for Premium Subscribers this week.
Verified Accounts Only: X Posts Can Now Restrict Replies
X, formerly known as Twitter, now allows users to block unverified accounts from replying to their posts. This feature comes almost a year after Musk introduced paid verification through Twitter Blue, where users could obtain verified status for a monthly fee starting at $7.99.
Restaurant and F&B News
Fast Casual Industry Poised for 11.5% Growth by 2027
The U.S. fast-casual market is projected to grow by $55.4 billion from 2022 to 2027, driven by the demand for innovative and customisable food menus that cater to consumers’ preferences.
Millennials, in particular, seek options to personalise their meals based on daily calorie intake and a growing awareness of nutrient-dense, low-calorie diets.
According to Technavio, fast casual food companies should focus on delivering bold, delicious flavours to increase the likelihood of repeat visits.
Restaurants can cater to the demand for customisable, innovative menus by offering diverse flavours through sauces, sides and drinks pairings. Run polls on social media votes to get feedback on proposed specials and customer buy-in.
KFC Loses No. 2 Chicken Chain Spot in the USA
Popeyes has claimed the No. 2 spot in the USA’s chicken chain rankings, surpassing KFC and now trailing behind Chick-fil-A.
Popeyes’ rise to the second spot came after capturing widespread attention with its chicken sandwich launch in 2019. This prompted other fast-food chains to enter the “chicken sandwich wars” by adding similar menu offerings.
Despite achieving the runner-up position, Popeyes experienced a decline in market share, dropping to 11.9%. In response, the company is implementing kitchen redesigns and improving operational efficiency.
Chicken Burgers and Sandwiches remain highly popular with Gen Z and Millennials. Interestingly, purchase decisions are not brand-led but driven by flavour and innovation for both demographics.
Intelligent Fermentation at Rioja Winery
Bodegas Tobía, located in Rioja Alta, uses “intelligent” fermentation tanks, resulting in higher quality wine at a lower price.
These patented tanks use the natural capacity of fermentation gas to achieve gentle and effective extraction. The benefits include improved aroma and colour expression, reduced microbiological risk, and a faster production process, allowing the wine to be ready for consumption even when fermentation has just finished.
How do you think this, and other innovative technology, will shape the future of wine production? Let me know in the comments.
This AI-Powered Grill Cooks Food Up to 10x Faster
UK startup Seergrills has created the world’s first AI-enabled grill called Perfecta. This grill uses two vertical infrared burners, allowing it to cook food up to 10 times faster than conventional methods.
With a touchscreen display, users can select the desired doneness and sear level, and the AI algorithm calculates the cooking time based on size, surface area, and fat content.
The grill optimises conditions for the Maillard reaction, giving food its unique flavour. It consumes 50% less energy due to its quick cooking time and focused heat.
Could this be a possible threat to the takeaway industry? Are you using an industrial equivalent? – let me know what you think.
Starbucks Develops Climate-Resistant Coffee Seeds for Sustainability
Starbucks has unveiled six varieties of coffee seeds that are resilient to climate change.
The company’s agronomy team has developed arabica seeds that can withstand rising temperatures and resist diseases like coffee leaf rust. The seeds have undergone extensive testing and have shown higher yields in a shorter period of time.
Starbucks is giving away these climate-resilient seeds to farmers, who can sell the resulting crops to buyers other than Starbucks. This initiative is part of the company’s commitment to ensuring the sustainability of the entire coffee supply chain.
By freely distributing these seeds to farmers, Starbucks is extending its protection beyond its supply chain, potentially aiding the broader coffee industry and helping farmers maintain their livelihoods.
The flip side, however, is the potential for these new varieties to limit biodiversity if they become the dominant coffee species. Healthy ecosystems depend on biodiversity, and monocultures may make crops more susceptible to pests and diseases in the long run.
Hotel and Travel News
MICHELIN Guide’s Latest Distinction: The MICHELIN Key for Hotels
The MICHELIN Guide has introduced a new distinction called the MICHELIN Key to recognise exceptional hotels worldwide.
The selection, comprising over 5,000 hotels in 120 countries, aims to recommend establishments that offer personalised experiences and excel in architecture, interior design, service, and uniqueness.
The MICHELIN Key will be awarded following anonymous stays conducted by the MICHELIN Guide selection teams, with the first selection set to be revealed in the first half of 2024.
Is the MICHELIN Key a game changer for the hospitality industry or just another arbitrary rating system?
Travel Experts Dismiss Sustainability as Key Factor in Holiday Choices
During the recent Travelzoo event, a group of experts discussed the impact of sustainability on travellers’ vacation preferences. According to a survey, many people are now considering sustainability when booking holidays. However, there is still a gap between intention and action, as only some people are willing to pay extra for a sustainable holiday.
Experts noted a significant disparity between age groups, with older individuals showing awareness of sustainability but not prioritising it in their travel decisions. Meanwhile, the younger generation is more aware of sustainable products. However, this doesn’t seem to affect their booking habits.
While there may be a disconnect between intention and action when it comes to sustainability in the travel industry, many people are considering sustainability when booking holidays. And though older people may not prioritise sustainability, the younger generation does.
By promoting their sustainability initiatives and practices, hoteliers can attract environmentally conscious travellers willing to pay extra for a sustainable holiday. Hoteliers must continue their efforts to become more sustainable and communicate these efforts effectively.
Marriott International Unveils Aggressive Three-Year Growth Plan
Marriott has presented its three-year financial model at a meeting with investors and analysts. They expect total gross fee revenues to reach $5.4 to $5.8 billion in 2025, with adjusted EBITDA reaching $5.2 to $5.7 billion.
Marriott aims to capitalise on the robust growth in global travel and transform its technology platform to connect people through travel experiences. The company plans to focus on midscale, extended stay, leisure and luxury offerings. The investment will continue in branded residential businesses and other adjacencies to enhance fee growth.
Hotels can take inspiration from Marriott’s growth-oriented approach, diversification strategy, technological integration, strategic investments, and focus on customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Hotels must diversify their offerings to cater to customer clusters, like Marriott’s focus on midscale, extended stay, leisure, and luxury segments. A key takeaway is the integration of adjacencies to explore opportunities beyond traditional offerings and diversify their revenue streams.
UNWTO Bridges Agriculture, Gastronomy, and Tourism for Sustainable Development
The 8th edition of the World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism, organised by UNWTO and Basque Culinary Center, highlighted the importance of the links between agriculture, gastronomy, and tourism.
The event featured discussions on responsible agricultural practices, sustainability, and the role of gastronomy tourism in promoting growth and diversification. Renowned chefs Martin Berasategui and Pedro Subijana were named UNWTO Ambassadors for Responsible Tourism.
A key action hotels can take is to promote local products on their menus, highlighting the relationship between gastronomy, local produce, and tourism. In addition to farm-to-table tours, cooking classes, and food and wine tastings, hotels can promote gastronomy tourism and showcase local cuisine.
Educating staff and guests about gastronomy tourism and responsible farming practices improves the depth of the whole experience, so add this type of content to your social media mix.
Lifestyle Hotels: The Latest Trend in Hospitality
The lifestyle hotel sector has rapidly expanded and is poised for further growth. By 2025, lifestyle hotels are projected to account for 23% of worldwide hotel developments.
According to STR, lifestyle hotels have achieved an average daily rate premium of $33.60 compared to non-lifestyle hotels. These hotels have successfully commanded higher average daily rates and outperformed other branded hotels in revenue per available room.
The projected growth implies a shift in consumer preferences, indicating that more guests value unique, personalised experiences over standard hotel offerings. The rise of lifestyle hotels presents opportunities for large chains and independent brands to differentiate themselves in a competitive market and connect with guests on a deeper level.
Last Updated on 4 December 2023 by Dawn Gribble