Hospitality Highlights: 28th April 2023
Latest Marketing News, Trends, Buyer Insights & Strategic Intelligence
Welcome to this week’s newsletter, where I share the latest hospitality news and trends.
In this issue, I cover a range of topics, from legal victories for chefs to social media holidays and events, and explore the importance of wellness and well-being trends in the hospitality industry and how businesses can improve customer loyalty.
Check out the latest developments from Starbucks and Yelp, as well as YouTube’s new music ad solutions, and with Mother’s Day just around the corner (for some), I’ve included some last-minute marketing tips so you can most of this special occasion.
Chef Wins Court Case After Charging No-Show Customer
Chef Paulo Airaudo won a court case after he charged a customer €510 for failing to show up for their booking at his two Michelin Star restaurant Amelia.
No-shows cost the hospitality industry billions every year. The court’s verdict could set a precedent for customers challenging no-show charges, which are used to deter unscrupulous bookings and make up for lost revenue.
Hospitality Hashtags to Use in May 2023
To stand out in the crowd, hotels and restaurants have to deploy the right hashtags on Instagram to increase their reach and attract more followers.
The first of my monthly hashtag trends report has been released, listing the latest, hand-curated hashtags for the hospitality industry.
The report includes hand-researched hashtags for breakfast, lunch, dinner, brunch, take-away, fine dining, street food, fast food, dessert, vegan options, coffee and beverages, wine and cocktails, summer drinks, hotel, restaurant, and travel.
By staying up-to-date with the latest trending hashtags, you can ensure that your content is seen by the right audience and stands out in a sea of competition.
Social Media Holidays & Events in June 2023
I’ve put together a comprehensive list of Social media holidays, events, and celebrations to help boost your marketing efforts in June this year.
From National Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Month to International Children’s Day, hotels and restaurants can tap into these popular opportunities to increase brand awareness, engagement, and sales.
Yelp Introduces Video Reviews
Yelp is releasing new features to make reviews more visual and interactive for users. The new features include the ability to upload high-resolution, short-form videos alongside text reviews and photos, as well as interactive review topics to help reviewers write more helpful reviews.
The platform is also introducing new review reactions such as “Helpful” and “Love this” to enhance engagement and appreciation for reviews, with the goal to make Yelp more informative and engaging for users, while also helping hospitality businesses showcase their food and ambience.
Wellness and Wellbeing Hospitality Trends
The hospitality industry is witnessing a new era of wellness as travelers pay more attention to their physical and mental health. The industry is responding with innovative solutions, such as wellness packages, vegan hotels, fasting clinics, and sleep tourism.
Medical tourism is also set to influence the health and wellness market, with countries like the UAE and India developing their tourism economies. The Global Wellness Institute expects wellness tourism expenditures to hit $1.3 trillion by 2025.
Starbucks Certifies First Five Greener Stores in the UK
Starbucks has certified its first five Greener Stores in the UK as the multinational chain commits to certifying 100 outlets across Europe, the Middle East and Africa this year.
To become a Greener Store, each outlet needs to meet a set of 25 requirements which include standards around energy efficiency, the management of waste and water as well as the use of more sustainable materials.
Why Businesses Struggle With Customer Loyalty
This article discusses the myths and bad behaviours that businesses need to avoid to improve customer loyalty.
The myths are that doing the basics well is enough to keep customers, satisfaction drives loyalty, and that customers only care about price. These are not true, and businesses need to focus on creating emotionally committed relationships with their customers.
The bad behaviours are denial, seeing churn as the natural order of things, continuing to tinker without moving the needle, and living in a “build it and they will come” world. By avoiding these behaviours, businesses can improve customer loyalty and create a foundation for growth.
YouTube Announces New Music Ad Solutions to Reach Gen Z
YouTube has launched two AI-powered music ad solutions to help brands reach Gen Z audiences aged 18-24.
Gen Z Music identifies songs trending with the demographic, making it possible to reach them with the music they love. Meanwhile, Trending Music on Shorts, which will be piloted in the coming months, targets Gen Z’s use of short-form videos to participate in pop culture and engage with their favourite artists.
Hospitality brands can capitalise on this by aligning themselves with music that trends with Gen Z. This can help attract and retain younger customers who are interested in unique experiences that cater to their interests.
Each week, I answer a key question and provide expert tips and advice to help you stay ahead of the game.
What Factors Should I Consider When Thinking About Hiring a Hospitality Marketing Consultant or Agency?
Marketing is an essential aspect of any hospitality business, whether it’s a small bed and breakfast, a high street restaurant, or a large hotel chain. With so much competition in the industry, it’s crucial to have a solid marketing strategy in place to attract and retain customers.
However, choosing between a hospitality marketing agency and a consultant can be a daunting task for business owners.
Hiring an Agency
One of the biggest advantages of hiring a hospitality marketing agency is the range of services they offer such as videography, PPC ads, SEO and PR.
They should have a team of experts in different areas of marketing. Consider the services the agency offers and determine whether they align with your business’s needs. For example, if you need help with social media, look for an agency that specialises in that area.
Budget: Agencies typically have higher fees than consultants, as they provide a range of services. You’ll need to consider your budget and determine which option is more cost-effective for your business.
Expertise: If you need help with a specific area of marketing, such as social media or SEO, an agency may be a better choice. However, if you need guidance on overall strategy, a consultant may be more appropriate. Look for an agency that has experience working with hotels and restaurants. They will have a better understanding of the industry’s needs and challenges.
Personalised Attention: If you prefer a more hands-on approach, a consultant may be a better fit. They offer personalised attention and work one-on-one with you to develop a strategy that meets your business’s unique needs.
Ask for case studies or testimonials from other restaurants and hotels the agency has worked with. This can give you an idea of their success rate and the results they can achieve.
Hiring a Consultant
While a hospitality marketing agency provides a range of services, a consultant focuses solely on marketing strategy. They can help you identify your target audience, develop a messaging strategy, and create a comprehensive marketing plan.
This can be particularly useful for businesses that have an in-house marketing team but need guidance on strategy and execution. A consultant can provide personalised attention and work one-on-one with you to understand your business’s unique needs and goals and develop a strategy that aligns with them.
If you prefer to work with a consultant, here are some factors to consider when choosing the right one for your hotel or restaurant:
Relevant Experience: Look for a consultant who has experience working with restaurants and hotels. This will ensure they understand your unique needs and challenges.
Personalised Attention: Consider whether the consultant offers personalised attention and will work one-on-one with you to develop a strategy that meets your business’s specific needs.
Success Stories: Look for testimonials or case studies from other restaurants the consultant has worked with. This can give you an idea of their success rate and the results they can achieve.
Whether you decide to work with an agency or consultant, remember that marketing is a critical aspect of your business’s success and can help you attract and retain customers in a competitive industry.
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It's Not Too Late to Market Mother’s Day
👉 Mother’s Day in the US, Canada, and Australia is celebrated on the second Sunday in May
Putting a Mother’s Day marketing campaign plan into effect months or even weeks-before Mother’s Day may not be possible for everyone, but that does not mean you can’t find success at the last minute.
The following tips can help your business succeed this Mother’s Day.
In the US, the search for Mother’s Day gifts begins in April and peaks between May 1 and Mother’s Day.
In multicultural countries like the United Arab Emirates, we can see searches for both March and May Mother’s Day Events.
Flowers remain one of the most popular gifts for mothers. Brands promoting luxury hampers, such as spas and restaurants, home goods, food boxes, and self-care products, are also very popular.
Restaurants generate the most revenue on Mother’s Day, according to a study conducted by e-commerce software: Womply. Your restaurant should be fully booked ahead of time.
Consider adding Dine at Home takeaways with flowers and a gift if you don’t offer dine-in or have people on your waiting list.
57% of celebrants plan to take their Mum out on a special outing.
1 in 4 shoppers is planning to purchase a Mother’s Day Experience in 2023.
Experiences are more likely to be gifted by millennials and Gen Zers than by Gen Xers and Boomers. They are also more likely to share their gift ideas on social media, an excellent source of User Generated Content.
This could include Private Cooking lessons, or an Exclusive Experiential Event – think Live Music, Photographer, and gorgeous decor.
Mother’s Day Content Strategy
Key “Mother’s Day” messages are:
Make sure your campaign generates buzz by creating Mother’s Day-specific content.
- Create a Landing Page or Category dedicated to Mother’s Day on your website.
- Create a Gift Guide for Mother’s Day
- If you have an affiliate program already established, you can send out an exclusive “Mother’s Day offer to your affiliates and brand ambassadors.
- Offer Product Personalisation
- Create a themed Mother’s Day board on Pinterest
- Send a Mother’s Day Reminder Email
- Host a Competition or Giveaway
- Put on a special physical or virtual event to celebrate Mother’s Day with your customers.
Gifting & Give-Aways for Mother’s Day
The feeling of receiving a free gift from a brand you love is indescribable. Consider offering a free gift with purchase for orders over a certain amount this Mother’s Day.
You’ll not only motivate your audience to place an order to qualify, but you’ll also make their Mother’s Day gifts feel more special.
People love Mother’s Day competitions as it’s their chance to celebrate their Mum and possibly win a prize.
You can create a “Tell us in 25 words or less why you would like to have a XYZ for your chance to win ZZZ” – Partner up with local artisans for a truly memorable prize.