In this week’s Hospitality Highlights Newsletter
Top Marketing News
- Meta Introduces New Brand Protection Tools
- Instagram Tests Group Chat Ice-Breakers in Notes
- New Legislation Set to Prohibit Fake Reviews and Hidden Fees
- More People Using TikTok as a Search Engine
- WhatsApp Expands Channel Functionality with New Polls and Voice Notes
Restaurant and F&B News
- Aldi Triumphs in High Court Over Thatchers in ‘Copycat’ Cider Case
- Sporting Events to Feature Carbon Footprint Labels on Menus
- McDonald’s New CosMc’s Test Sparks Market Interest
- Grubhub to Compensate Massachusetts Restaurants $3.5M for Overcharging
- Restaurant Brands Innovate with Meal Kits for Home Consumers
Hotel and Travel News
- Airbnb Reveals 2023’s Most-Loved Homes on Instagram
- Insider Perspectives: Key Considerations for 2024 Travel Plans
- Business Travel Spend Predicted to Fully Recover
- Music Tourism to Bolster European Travel Demand
- Hilton Partners with Paris Hilton on Roblox for Innovative Loyalty Campaign
Let’s Check In!
Meta Introduces New Brand Protection Tools
Meta has unveiled new features to help businesses protect against brand misuse and intellectual property infringement. The updates include an enhanced Brand Rights Protection system with features including cross-surface searches and a more extensive reference library.
The Intellectual Property Reporting Center now offers a streamlined reporting experience. According to Meta, these improvements aim to increase efficiency and transparency in combating counterfeits, piracy, trademark violations, and more. Learn more about Brand Rights Protection here.
Hotels and restaurants can use these new tools to monitor and report misuse of their brand, combat intellectual property infringement, and protect their online presence.
Not only will this protect your social channels, but it will also improve customer experience and build brand trust.
Instagram Tests Group Chat Ice-Breakers in Notes
Instagram has launched a test of Notes prompts, allowing users to spark group chats with conversation starters. This way, you’ll be able to engage and connect with users, especially younger demographics. The data shows that teens are ten times more likely to create a Note on Instagram.
For hospitality brands, Instagram’s Notes feature could be used to engage with younger audiences by initiating conversations around targeted topics and trends.
While this function is being tested, review your community-building strategies, so you’re ready to engage when the feature goes live.
New Legislation Set to Ban Fake Reviews and Hidden Fees
New rules in the UK are set to ban fake reviews and hidden charges in the hospitality industry. Proposed legislation is aiming to protect consumers from the widespread practices of drip pricing and fake reviews, which cost them £2.2bn annually.
Fees must be included in the headline price. The ban will also apply to supermarket unit pricing. While consumer advocates welcome the government’s action, they urge it to take stronger steps, especially in areas such as flight bookings.
To replace drip pricing, create value-added packages for each of your core customer segments. This way, your offers will make more of an impact, and you’ll avoid any legal troubles.
More People Using TikTok as a Search Engine
TikTok is no longer just for entertainment; it’s now a significant search engine. Over 40% of Americans use it for searches, with Gen Z favouring it over Google by almost 10%.
Businesses are catching on and are seeing success. User content preferences lean towards video tutorials, question-and-answer sessions and personal stories.
Hotels and restaurants: you need to be on TikTok
Use search engine optimisation tactics when creating your video descriptions. Include keywords and questions your customers are likely to ask.
Don’t forget to get your employees involved to spread the love!
WhatsApp Expands Channel Functionality with New Polls and Voice Notes
Google has initiated the first stage of phasing out third-party tracking cookies, impacting 30 million Chrome users. This move aims to enhance privacy but will change web tracking for advertisers.
Google’s replacement categorises users into topic listings for ad targeting, leading to less granular targeting and potentially reducing ad campaign effectiveness. The broader impact on digital marketing is significant, with further changes expected throughout 2024.
Hotels and restaurants should focus on building direct, personalised customer relationships through their first-party data, such as loyalty programs, email marketing, and website interactions.
Without traditional ad targeting, understanding customer segments, focusing on excellent customer experiences, and engaging content will be essential for success.
Restaurant and F&B News
Aldi Triumphs in High Court Over Thatchers in 'Copycat' Cider Case
Aldi has successfully defended itself in a high court trademark battle against Thatchers over its Cloudy Lemon Cider, with the court finding no likelihood of confusion between the products. The court cited a low degree of similarity in packaging and referenced other lemon-flavoured beverages with similar packaging.
However, it’s not the first time the supermarket has faced accusations of copying another brand’s products. Last year, a court found that Aldi had infringed M&S’ light-up gin bottle designs.
It’s important for hotels and restaurants to stay informed about trademark disputes and ensure compliance with trademark laws for product designs and branding.
Sporting Events to Feature Carbon Footprint Labels on Menus
Key sporting events, including the Six Nations and the FA Cup Final, will feature carbon labels on menus, providing fans with the greenhouse gas emissions of the food and drink they buy.
Companies like Just Eat and Wahaca are also adding carbon labels, and a new coalition aims to establish a unified industry standard for monitoring and communicating environmental product performance.
Restaurants can respond by exploring the potential for adding carbon labels to their menus, sourcing ingredients with lower carbon footprints, and collaborating with suppliers to review and update recipes for reduced emissions.
McDonald's New CosMc’s Test Sparks Market Interest
McDonald’s offshoot, CosMc’s, exceeded expectations with high foot traffic and trade area size, catering to Gen Z preferences and capturing a $100 billion speciality beverage market.
The concept sees unique drive-thru dynamics, cashless payments, and minimal human interaction. Plans to open ten more test units signal continued growth and potential for differentiation within the coffee market.
Restaurants should take note of CosMc’s success in tapping into younger demographics and the speciality beverage market. Focus on diverse menu offerings to cater to evolving consumer preferences.
Grubhub to Compensate Massachusetts Restaurants $3.5M for Overcharging
Grubhub has agreed to a $3.5 million settlement for overcharging Massachusetts restaurants during the COVID-19 pandemic. Grubhub was accused of exceeding the state’s fee cap by charging fees exceeding 15% of the restaurant menu price.
The settlement will see impacted restaurants receiving compensation, with Grubhub also paying a sum to the state.
Restaurants should closely monitor fee agreements with third-party delivery platforms and seek reimbursement if overcharging is suspected.
Staying informed and advocating for fair treatment from delivery service providers is essential for maintaining profit margins.
Restaurant Brands Innovate with Meal Kits for Home Consumers
Several major restaurant brands, including Taco Bell, Chipotle, and White Castle, have introduced at-home meal kits to bring their dining experiences into customers’ homes.
The kits include signature items and unique touches, such as Taco Bell’s “SOS Kit” with branded products and spill-resistant bedsheets, and White Castle’s “Love Kit” featuring Sliders, scented candles, and unique cards.
Restaurants might consider creating at-home dining experiences parallel to their brand, highlighting signature dishes, adding unique touches, and using consistent packaging to maintain brand integrity and capture customers’ experiences at home.
Hotel and Travel News
Airbnb Reveals 2023's Most-Loved Homes on Instagram
Airbnb has shared its most liked homes on Instagram in 2023 which include stunning properties like a cliffside retreat in Chile, an eco bamboo house in Indonesia, and a jungle home in Mexico.
Looking ahead to 2024, the trend forecast highlights the popularity of nature getaways, with national parks, amazing views, and beach destinations ranking as top-booked categories.
Hotels should consider incorporating nature-inspired elements and eco-friendly features into their properties to tap into the growing demand for nature getaways.
Marketing messages should focus on breathtaking views, sustainable practices, and immersive natural settings to attract guests seeking unique and environmentally conscious experiences.
Insider Perspectives: Key Considerations for 2024 Travel Plans
Sabre’s global workforce survey reveals increased travel confidence in 2024, with most planning at least two leisure trips, particularly in Asia Pacific.
Gen Z is boosting their travel budget but is concerned about lost luggage. Hospitality should prepare for increased leisure and long-haul travel, cater to family-oriented destinations in EMEA, and consider sustainability offerings to appeal to travellers’ priorities.
Hotels can respond by tailoring offerings to meet the increased leisure travel demand, embracing sustainability practices, and providing solutions to address concerns about lost luggage.
Business Travel Spend Predicted to Fully Recover in 2023
In 2024, business travel will see a resurgence, featuring key trends such as AI PAs, executive field trips, and blended itineraries, according to Amadeus.
Companies will emphasise value, sustainability, and personalisation, with a growing focus on objective stacking to maximise trip efficiency. Digitised expenses and power networking will also play significant roles. According to industry experts, human connection and discernment will drive travel decisions, with a premium on fulfilling multiple objectives and sustainability.
Hotels can adapt to the evolving landscape by offering sustainability-focused packages, personalized experiences, and networking and team-building facilities. Embracing digital expense management solutions and promoting eco-friendly practices will also attract business travellers.
Music Tourism to Bolster European Travel Demand in 2024
2024 will likely see a surge in music tourism, with European travellers planning international trips to attend concerts and festivals. A study found that German travellers are most willing to travel abroad for music events, while Spanish travellers show the greatest interest in exploring the destination.
Flight search data further supports this trend, indicating increased travel around key music events, such as Taylor Swift’s Eras tour. There is a growing desire for unique travel experiences centred around music and live performances.
Hotels can capitalize on this trend by offering customised music-inspired packages, collaborating with local venues for pre-event dinners, and providing transportation options to and from music events.
Hilton Partners with Paris Hilton on Roblox for Innovative Loyalty Campaign
Hilton joins the metaverse by integrating with Paris Hilton’s Roblox world, offering users digital wearables and real-world Hilton Honors perks.
The brand recreated a recent commercial using Roblox avatars to engage and reward members in the virtual space. Immersive challenges will give away over 12 million Hilton Honors Points and 50,000 digital wearables. Since its launch, Paris Hilton’s Roblox world, Slivingland, has seen substantial traffic and user engagement.
Hotels can respond by exploring similar metaverse integrations to engage new audiences while offering their loyal customers unique virtual experiences with real-world perks.
Last Updated on 31 January 2024 by Dawn Gribble