Food Tourism: How to Unlock Incremental Revenue Through F&B

Kevin Brown

Culinary experiences during travel have become a massive revenue opportunity. In fact, the most booked food and beverage destination experiences on TripAdvisor are also the most traveled to countries in the world. Food and beverage (F&B) tourism is on the rise and is expected to grow by $82b over the next five years; creating a highly lucrative revenue source for hoteliers.

That’s why TravelClick is partnering with SevenRooms to help hoteliers take advantage of this incremental opportunity. By consolidating guest F&B data like guest spending habits at bars, restaurants, or entertainment venues with TravelClick’s guest profiles, hoteliers can:

  • Market to non-room hotel guests like locals
  • Tailor F&B marketing offers and in-stay experiences for guests
  • Empower F&B outlet staff to be able to recognize guests in meaningful ways
  • Segment guests based on F&B spending activity

We sat down for a chat with Allison Page, Co-Founder and CPO of SevenRooms, to understand why hoteliers haven’t taken advantage of this opportunity until now, the value behind a seamless integration of guest F&B and CRM systems, and how hoteliers can plan ahead for the future of food tourism.

Why haven’t hoteliers taken full advantage of the food tourism trend to increase incremental revenue opportunities through F&B?

Allison: The most significant problem is that the F&B technology available to hotel marketing departments has historically been less sophisticated than on the lodging side of the business. Even if they’ve invested in creating a quality product at their restaurants, a lack of F&B data has prevented hotels from executing the same data-driven marketing strategies they’re used to.

Given adequate F&B data, hotels could deliver the kind of personalized marketing that helps their customers become food tourists. By understanding a guest based on the data gathered in their F&B outlets, a hotel brand could offer a promotion enticing the customer to visit the F&B outlet in a different city. Or the hotel could host an event designed to attract food tourists and market it to the guests likely to attend.

How much value is there in integrating guest F&B data with centralized CRM profiles?

Allison: F&B is one of the hotel’s best opportunities to gather data about their customers, and one of the most profitable sources of additional revenue. During service at a restaurant or bar, guests interface with the brand more richly than almost any other part of their stay. It is in the F&B venue that servers learn the personal details that guests share, and where integrated POS systems can reveal their spending habits and order history, down to the item.

Having this data on-hand helps build the full picture of a guest. It helps hotels begin personalizing the next experience before the guest even walks in the door, which in turn drives both direct revenue and brand loyalty. A global guest profile lets hotels provide exceptional service: to personalize upsells at check-in, customize hotel room minibars before they arrive, anticipate their needs and preferences during service at the F&B outlet, and build relevant marketing campaigns following their visit. So the value of obtaining this unified view is very meaningful.

What do you think hoteliers need to focus on in 2020 to effectively take advantage of this revenue opportunity?

Allison: Hotels won’t be able to leverage all of these opportunities unless they’re able to tie F&B spending into comprehensive CRM profiles. This is why it’s so important to implement an integrated technology stack across the property.

Unfortunately, too many systems don’t make data available to other software. When evaluating technology, it’s important that a system not only gather guest data, but allow the hotel to own the data as well. Hotels need to choose technology partners that integrate, like TravelClick’s Guest Management Solution does with SevenRooms, to ensure the seamless exchange of customer information.

Personalizing the guest experience is a collaboration between staff, a hotel’s back office, and technology partners. Done right, it makes customers feel like familiar guests no matter when or where they visit a hotel.

If you would like to learn more about how TravelClick and SevenRooms can help you create incremental F&B revenue, contact us today!

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