Opinion: “F&B Marketing Success in the Hospitality Context: 10 Ideas to Capture and Build Loyalty” | Ambitur

By Glória Peixe, Regional Sales & Marketing Manager JJW Hotels & Resorts – Algarve*

Upon entering a hotel, it is common for guests to expect much more than just a comfortable stay. The Food & Beverage (F&B) offering plays a key role in the customer experience, directly influencing satisfaction and loyalty. In this context, F&B marketing stands out as a powerful tool to attract new customers and keep them happy with what the hotel has to offer.

However, it is important to point out that this is only an initial reflection, a high-level approach, which always lacks local study and the specific strategic objectives of each hotel in question. Each property is unique, with its own identity and vision for F&B. Therefore, an in-depth study of local specificities is necessary to effectively implement the strategy in the context of F&B marketing.

One of the fundamental pillars is the detailed analysis of the local market. Understanding regional culinary trends, customer preferences and consumer behavior are key to identifying unique opportunities for differentiation and innovation in F&B. In addition, knowledge of local competition helps to strategically position the hotel, highlighting F&B strengths relative to its competitors.

The hotel’s strategic objectives also play a key role in defining the F&B marketing strategy. F&B can be considered as a central element for the hotel brand, as it is used as one of the main differentiators and advantages of the business. On the other hand, in some cases, F&B can be considered as a supplement to the accommodation service, aiming to improve the guest experience.

When aligning hotel strategic goals with F&B marketing, there are two distinct solutions that can be adopted. The first option is to recognize the hotel for its unique cuisine, using the hotel brand as a basis to promote the chef’s unique creations and a la carte dining options. The second option is to bet on the complete differentiation between hotel and restaurant customers, establishing strategies and visions that respond to the different preferences of this audience. Both approaches have the potential to be successful, depending on the specific vision and goals of the hospitality business.

With that in mind, here are 10 key ideas that have held true throughout my personal experience:

1. Differentiating Strategy: Uniting Values ​​and Experiences

F&B marketing in a hotel context starts with a differentiation strategy. It is important to develop the business plan for the restaurant independently, highlighting the unique values ​​of both the hotel and the restaurant itself. By providing a unique culinary experience, it is possible to captivate the public through a distinctive service and an attractive atmosphere. The use of local ingredients and partnerships with local producers also help to reinforce the unique identity of the F&B property, whether as an integral part of a hotel or as an independent restaurant that co-exists with the hotel brand.

2. Social Media and Trends: Communication in Focus

On social media, F&B marketing comes alive. An attractive calendar of events, aligned with brand values ​​and relevant to local culture, can boost customer loyalty. Leveraging traditional events, as well as creating your own, adds a personalized touch to the experience. In addition, following trends in the F&B sector enables innovation, offering dishes and experiences that are in line with consumer preferences.

3. Service and Detail: The Art of Excellence

In the competitive world of F&B, service is a key success factor. A focus on customer service, with attention to detail, ensures an unforgettable experience. The team must be trained to provide an attentive, cordial and highly personalized service. The careful presentation of the dishes and the use of high quality materials contribute to the excellence of the final product.

4. Captivating content: Tasting with the eyes

In social networks, visual content plays a prominent role. “Appetizing” photos of the dishes, showing the culinary artistry behind each creation, arouse the interest of customers. In addition, it is important to convey the warm and unique atmosphere of the restaurant through the images. Sharing brand values ​​and the story behind F&B creates an emotional connection with the audience, inviting them to live the experience.

5. Hotel and F&B: Two Identities in Harmony

It is important to distinguish between hotel and F&B marketing, treating each as a single entity/brand. However, both must be aligned with the values ​​and overall vision of the business. By focusing on F&B as a central point of the hotel experience, it is possible to create a differentiated offering that stands out from the competition. International examples, such as the example of the Kimpton Hotels & Resorts brand, show how restaurant positioning can drive the hotel’s strategic brand vision.

6. Appealing Campaigns: The Secret to Conquering the Palate

F&B marketing campaigns must be attractive and captivating. Promoting special offers, themed events and unique experiences is one way to engage the audience. Using storytelling and engaging content can pique customers’ curiosity and encourage them to experience what the hotel’s F&B has to offer.

7. Locally Sourced is King: Valuing Local

The locally sourced trend is gaining momentum. Highlighting local and sustainable ingredients reinforces the hotel’s concern for product quality and supporting the local economy. Partnerships with leading brands and co-branding events can also increase visibility and inherently enhance the quality and consumer perception of the quality of the F&B offering.

8. Trends and Competition: Learning from the Market

Keeping up with F&B industry trends is essential to stay relevant. Sources like The Food People offer valuable insight into international trends and their application to the local market. Studying the competition and analyzing success stories helps identify opportunities to innovate and improve marketing strategies.

9. Audience Segmentation: Learn to Capture

Knowing the profile of consumers is essential for personalizing marketing campaigns. Analyzing demographics, food preferences and consumer behavior helps develop an offer aligned with demand. Continuous analysis of results and monitoring of customer preferences allow adjustments and improvements in the F&B strategy.

10. Measurements: Evaluation for growth

Metric analysis is essential to evaluate the success of F&B marketing strategies. Tracking sales growth, customer satisfaction, average check, number of covers, “fill rate” per period, return rate and social engagement are key indicators. Metrics once again offer valuable insights to optimize strategy and continue to capture customers.

F&B marketing in a hotel context is a strategic element for business success. Through a differentiated approach, effective communication and excellent service, it is possible to create a unique offer that captivates and builds customer loyalty. Focusing on product quality, local appreciation and innovation is key to standing out in a competitive and ever-evolving market. With careful planning and adaptation to the preferences of the target audience, hotel F&B can capture the tastes of customers and achieve the desired success.

* @ Hotel Dona Filipa
@ Penina Hotel & Golf Resort
@ San Lorenzo Golf Course
Golf course @Pinheiros Altos

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