Marketing Secrets - Pt3 Hospitality trends for 2021 - 2022

Do the things you are in control of.

Learn what's best to boost bookings for:

  • Staycations
  • Work from home and business clients
  • Weddings
  • Events and parties
  • Wellness trends

Webinar transcript

Pete:

So, we've put our thinking hats on and having reviewed a lot of the literature as well, we've got lots of hospitality trends to share with you. But the message is still do the things you are in control of, so all the ideas we're going to present now, most of them are pretty low cost and can be implemented by most people on this call, I would say, in the various sort of sub-industries we're going to be looking at separately, accommodation, weddings, wellness, business, and sort of party events as well. So we're going to sort of split it down into a little bit more granularity.

Pete:

And we're going to start with domestic accommodation, which, as we've been said about 20 times already, the staycation. And just to reiterate, some of that data from before expecting a reduction in inbound travel reduction and outbound travel, which means there should be lots of domestic demand. So the sorts of trends that you could latch on to and to take advantage of, well, in the very short term, it'll be super local people that won't be looking to travel very far I wouldn't have thought. Maybe 25 miles depending where you're based.

Pete:

But then as things move on, people will be looking to explore great Britain. There's so many wonderful places in the country, everyone's near something, aren't they? So there's a lot to be talked about there. Others will be looking for a little bits of luxury, might feel quite their regular spa treatments or their a-la-carte.

Pete:

Generation Clean is another trend to consider. So quite rightly many people are worried about going in public and the health and hygiene, so ensure you're talking about that sensibly. People obviously looking for unique experiences still, that's been the trend for a few years and we're expecting that one to continue. Solo travelers, many people live alone and really enjoy their own company, that's fine, and they're just looking for breaks where they can get away on their own.

Pete:

Outdoor dining, I'm sure we'll continue for a while, and at booking as well, we talked about earlier. And also extended stays, people are staying in the UK instead of going abroad. They may well be looking for a two week break or even longer and for people that are working from home or university students, there's no reason why they can't have a bit of a blended stay and work, or study.

Pete:

53% of people are just looking to relax on the beach. No surprise there. Use of mobiles is as increased as ever. Ever increasing and social platforms and experienced hunters, and some of these areas have increased during lockdown, people walking more, people cycling more, looking forward to family time or rewilding, dog ownership's gone up, people looking for pampering. And mainly people on the call might be thinking well, "We can support all of those things, that's fine. That's just what we do." But the message I'm trying to say is, you need to tell people that you can do these things.

Pete:

So yeah, everyone can go for a walk from your hotel, but you need to show them that they can do that. And there's lovely routes, and there's lovely Bluebell walks or walks along the canal or whatever it is where you are. And you can go on the cycling routes and here's the nice safe routes you want to go on. And that you've got the space for families to get together or rewilding, and show that you're welcoming dogs if you are, or the spa treatments that can be booked, plus all those other trends down there at the bottom as well.

Pete:

If you do those things, or you're thinking of doing those things, just make sure you tell people early. So a couple of examples that we're seeing, these are sister properties, Great House on the left, doing the afternoon tea take away. They were [inaudible 00:04:28] going to carry on doing that, after the pandemic is finished, it's been fantastic for them since the property Court Coleman in Wales do the a-la-carte take away. Also, I think they're going to try and continue that.

Pete:

D and D [inaudible 00:04:44] in London, they do more of a DIY, they're like Cousteau, I suppose, where you can sort of get the ingredients from the property. Singlemoons or Solo Breaks as we called it for Ye Olde Bell on the right, you can have single rooms, but you can talk about these as packages, just putting that up. And again, that was one of Daniel's on the right, short sort of great results pretty quickly, just by talking about the opportunity for people to come on, say hello, Spar breaks at Ye Olde Bell.

Pete:

I'm sure many of you have seen The Pig Big outdoor lunch. They're doing that on many of the properties, and for the dog owners, you got Yappy Meals on the left-hand side there from Saracen's Head, and doggy ice cream on the right. And then this sort of information is absolutely perfect. It doesn't matter if people don't buy the Yappy meal, but what it says if you're a dog owner is, my dog is going to be unbelievably welcoming at this property.

Pete:

And if you're a dog owner, you going to go, "Well, that's the one I to go to because it's all going to be perfect for everyone." It doesn't matter if they don't buy it, just putting it up there will really benefit you if you're dog friendly. And another final one's seacations, but to much you actually do about this, it's just a trend that's appearing. Lots of the cruise ships aren't really going anywhere, not going very far. And we know Princess Cruises has repurposed their itinerary so they're just sailing around the UK and doing different options around there. So that's where seacations comes in.

Pete:

That's the combination part. We're going to move on to businesses, and massive change in business, because we were all, at the moment, working from home, working from a hotel. We'll have to wait to see how our business is really kind of reform when we're allowed to go back to the offices. Many are talking about part-time working in the office and part-time at home, it's totally going to change and it's going to change events as well.

Pete:

But where, if there is a lot of people working from home, there's still going to be need on businesses to bring people together. So having team hubs or might be a very short meeting room lets, or breakfast meetings. Maybe looking for app bookings, make it really convenient. Training days and team days, you're still going to need to bring everyone together from time to time, just to bond and work on the company culture and upskill everyone, so I can't see those going away...

Pete:

Maybe more hybrid events, mixture of live and online, so we kind of streaming live events. Blended travel, talked about it bit earlier as well, the mixture of work and holidays. And for people that are really abandoned in their offices, I think when they come together, they're going to be looking for something really different, really cool spaces, creative spaces, outdoor spaces. They're going to potentially look for creativity and play and festivalisation. And I talked about it at the top, it's just making events fun, not being the normal dull offices.

Pete:

There's a few examples out there already, Work From Your Local. So just a website where any cafe or pub can locate itself, if you're open and friendly to people popping in with a laptop, sitting there drinking coffee and eating cake, so up and down the country. But business meetings in many hotels a little bit like this, and this is how they're often promoted. A bit of a kind of a blank canvas, but a bit plain, isn't it? I mean, white walls, brown table, it just doesn't look inspiring. You don't go, "Yeah, that's the room for me, I want to go there." That's not really appealing at all.

Pete:

Before the pandemic, a company called WeWork, and there's others, but they started re-purposing office buildings, I think there's 20 or more, quite a few in London. This is how they promote their business spaces. They're not showing brown tables and white walls. They're just showing really nice photos, and to me, these look like hotels, and I think many people on the call will think, "Well, yeah, which hotel is that?" It's not a hotel, it's just a business space, but they're not showing people working in a brown room. I think, quite easy for many properties to sort of flip a little bit and promote themselves like this.

Pete:

And when you look at WeWork, they highlight the facilities that each venue has, and again, thinking about hotel, I think most hotels could claim all of those things very easily. They're not unique to WeWork, they're just unique to a well-run inviting property. So again, talking about these sort of languages, not just talking about having flip charts and internet access, but tick boxes for bike storage and mother's rooms and wellness rooms and so on.

Pete:

Or if you're by the sea, if you like Headland, you can surf to work, so great little video there. Here's what Castle, one of our clients in Yorkshire, near Leeds, they've got a lovely property and they do a couple of nice packages here. One on the left here, Ready, steady, cook, a fun, fast paced, chef led, cooking, judging experience, team building experience, really nice one. They've also got some extensive grounds and they've made sure that they can have parties in the woods. And this is aimed at businesses.

Pete:

They've got wood-fired pizza oven and covered dance floors and DJs. And so it's all set up ready to go for larger business events and obviously, can provide accommodation as well for them. So some really nice ideas there. So just thinking about how you package up and what you offer, just give it a little twist and making it look super inviting for these new trends.

Pete:

Okay, just to move on to the wedding market. So obviously weddings have been curtailed, but congratulations to all those that have got married during COVID times. So a bit more data on weddings. So the average wedding costs just under £52,000, and what people are looking for, 42% looking for inclusive packages, and 39 for venue only, so completely split and a little bit mixed there. But I just go with whatever you normally do probably. Average is 79 people for ceremonies, that's pretty interesting. So when you're putting packages together, a package for 80 would be pretty ideal, pretty spot on, and a reception for a hundred would be a good thing to do if you can.

Pete:

Yeah, the average ages, which helps [inaudible 00:11:58]. So there's a expected 153,000 weddings were postponed last year that need to fit into 2021, 2022. That's a staggering number I think. It could be a real boom for the wedding industry. So some of the impacts as well, overseas destination weddings, they're not going to be a thing for several years I wouldn't have thought. So if you're kind of a destination in the UK, you'd be well positioned for those that still want something wow, and expensive, and I'd expect prices to rise.

Pete:

And if you're a new venue or you can offer, you can change and start offering weddings, I think that'd be well worth doing. There's also going to be a trend for all those couples that have been able to get married but in a limited way, to have big celebrations. So again, think of packaging the party part of it off as well, separately to the whole event.

Pete:

And then a bit more here just for the targeting really. This is quite recent data, December was still the most common month to get engaged. 32% of people update their Facebook to engaged within 24 hours of being engaged. That's awesome for us because you can target people that have updated their status to engaged on Facebook. And nearly 50% book their venue within the first three months of getting engaged. So just those top three things, December, January, February, March, that's your key months for trying to get those engaged couples to be and book your wedding.

Pete:

And people looking for standout, not standard, they want Insta worthy venues. So obviously showing fantastic photos as you would anyway, but that's super important. And having a super good Instagram presence yourself as well, your Instagram for wedding venues is almost like your brochure. You're not invited to our wedding. So, in the typical wedding invite, it's going to have this year, but please come to a party, and these are often called after parties or happy ever after parties. So again packaging up that kind of party aspect is going to be important if you have the space.

Pete:

I mean, in the very short term, properties like this one in Cornwall, Gwel an Mor, it's perfect for COVID times. Packages for 50, packages for 30, elopements, live stream weddings, the most bang on trend, and right in the moment. There's been lots of virtual wedding fairs and showrounds, it's a great idea. There's many examples out there, three on the screen. Pick a date, and a bit like we're do now, get everyone to come along and show people around. There's also ones where you can just book individual ones and people must Facebook Live it. Walking around and talking to you.

Pete:

Another option is to invest in a video like this one on the Horn of Plenty's website, virtual wedding tour. What's great about the video, it's called evergreen content so it's just there all the time, and it actually works perfectly well. It really works really well for SEO because people are looking for virtual wedding tours, they don't have to wait for the date, they can just go and watch it whenever they want. So a great bit of content there. And if you're looking for more inspirations from the people that we follow on Instagram, like We'd Mag, Hitched and the Guides for Brides, I mean [inaudible 00:15:38], packed full of these sort of trends.

Pete:

Okay, the next one we're going to look at is events and parties. So lots more demand expected here as well. Framily groups, not a type at the top, it's friends and family, getting all your big groups together. Freedom parties, we're seeing inquiries of up to 300 people. And then just a whole long list of things, which sadly weren't able to be celebrated, but many people will still want to celebrate in the right time. Anniversaries, graduations, reunions some of those life events, sadly wait. Some memorials, but we think there's going to be plenty of demand in this area.

Pete:

But unlike a wedding it's a little bit more checkboxy, people are going to be looking for outside spaces, inclusive packages, people don't want to have to think about it and plan it quite as much as a wedding. So you have a buffet or an afternoon tea with accommodation options, and don't forget to mention the parking and vehicle charging, all those things that you offer. And we're seeing examples of these as well around about Sedgebrook Hall, of a guide how to hold your post lockdown party, planning checklist. And several properties are offering exclusive use packages, this one in the WestHighland Hotel, and Dormy House again, offering exclusive use for freedom parties.

Pete:

Okay, and the final bit in this section is wellness. So in February, 2020, some of the team on the call today, Tom and Daniel and Skye, I think it was, created a fantastic wellness report, which we launched in February 29, 2020. And then it was like, "Oh yeah, that's not great timing." But looking back on it, I think everything in it still stands. So I think Clara's going to post the link to it, but I'll just run through a few highlights, give you a little flavor of it. So it's not talking about really the hard spar stuff, the wet rooms and the treatments and the pools, it's much more the sort of wellness side of things. And again, really could be applicable to many properties. This is not an awful lot of investment to do and talk about these kind of areas.

Pete:

And then there's lots of pretty unusual terms here that you might not have come across, let's pick out a few. So sound bathing, for example, that's where you'd go into a indoor space and it's led by someone often just playing, almost like white noise and it's very calming. It's often quite dark and it's super mindfulness, kind of meditative type experience. Breathwork's a bit similar, guided, but all about breathing, breathing deeply. A little bit yogary, I suppose, it's quite a good one to do. Forest bathing [inaudible 00:18:54] going to talk about in a minute, but it's a Japanese idea, often guided into a woods, but it's really about slowing down. You don't talk, you walk really slowly, often just sit down, sort of feel the trees, smell the plants, listen to the sounds. It's kind of a really immersive kind of forest experience, but it's much more detailed in the report.

Pete:

And again, many hotels are packaging these up and selling these experiences. Mountcalm in London doing gong baths, which is a type of sound experience. Blakes, in London, do the breathing room, and this isn't expensive or particularly difficult to put on. They charge £35 a head. You get one shot of CBD and the 60 minute transformational breathing workshop, so that's what their words. And then an inhale or exhale cocktail in the cocktail bar. So they don't have to do anything particularly difficult or different to be able offer this.

Pete:

And Cliveden in Berkshire, this is air forest bathing. Obviously near a wood or a forest, but really, I don't know if you read the detail, it's really just a overnight bed and breakfast stay for £500. And it includes a guided walk and a book about forest bathing. So it's not particularly complex to put together, you just find the guide and then it's really just an overnight stay, but linking on to current trends.

Clara:

And Pete, just to jump in, and Daniel just posted a question, and that was about CBD. And what's CBD referring to your last slide?

 

Daniel:

Yeah, it's cannibal oil. So it's finding the benefits of cannabis, but without the psychoactive ingredient. And within the wellness report, there's a lot of different examples of different products that are available along those lines now.

Pete:

Yeah, it was all legal. It's just this the legal form, isn't it?

Daniel:

Yeah.

 

Pete:

And the last one, a bit more sort of giving back. Sometimes when you buy things, you might've had this already, trees are planted in your honor of buying something. I don't know how you would, but Tree nation is one example that I've come across. I mean, there's many out there, but it's a nice way to promote your ethics, if this is what your business stands for. Separate questions. If anyone's got any other questions, I don't know if Clara is on the questions.

Clara:

I've got a question from Nel Barrington saying, "How does this work with Package Holiday Regs?" 

Pete:

I understand the question, but I've got no idea what the answer is. If Nel wants to chip in with something, then feel free.

Nel:

Yeah, hi. I know that they've been looked at this year, the Package Holiday Regs, but I think it's kind of, it's pretty important, isn't it? Because they imply that if you link more than one element with your accommodation business, you're breaching the Package Holiday Regulations, but I know that they are looking at that this year, but I didn't know whether anyone knew where they'd resolved that yet.

Pete:

It's about when you book it, isn't it? If you book it all together, it's okay. But if you book the hotel and then you go and book your Forrest bar separately, that's where it all gets a bit confusing, doesn't it.

Nel:

It's if you book it within 24 hours of booking your main accommodation offering, then you are part of the package holiday regulations. So it's very complicated, and there's the information about it on online. And I was just looking for an answer, but I know it's really difficult because even anyone who has a website that mentions a pub on it, that says this is a great pub to go to, in theory, that is breaching the Package Holiday Regulations. So I don't know what the answer is, I thought you might know Pete.

Pete:

No, sorry.

Clara:

Nel, I'd just jump in and say that I had a conversation with Alister Handyside who many on the call will know. And he was alluding to that situation changing later in the year. So in progress, was the kind of words and the reaction that I got. And wouldn't it be great to have a change.

Nel:

Thank you.