As we get closer to the end of July, we’re seeing some innovative trends that will help the hospitality industry get back to daily business, and some trends that are so bizarre that they not only help us adapt but provide some much-needed laughter. Here’s a roundup of what’s happening in the industry this week.
1. This, not that
Venues across the country have opened their doors and their calendars to hosting smaller sized events. But, it’s certainly not business as usual. Planners will have to get creative and rethink some standard event traditions. Luckily BizBash has offered up a “this, not that” list for keeping live events safe in our current normal. A few of my favorites: face masks with names printed on them instead of name tags, evites instead of paper invitations, and ordering food and drinks with your phone to avoid long lines. You can check out the full list of swaps here.
2. Setting a new standard
Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson, announced this week that due to the spike in COVID-19 cases across the country, all guests of Marriott hotels, no matter the jurisdiction, must wear face masks while in common areas. The rule originally just applied to staff but has now been extended to guests. Considering Marriott is one of the biggest players in the hotel industry, it makes me wonder if other large hotel conglomerates and eventually boutique companies will follow suit. Read the full announcement on Boutique Hotel News.
3. A handful of Cuomo chips and one lonely piece of meat, please
On Friday of last week, a new executive order from New York governor Andrew Cuomo was enforced for the state’s hospitality businesses. Under this new order, any bar or restaurant patron must order food if they want to enjoy an alcoholic beverage. In response, bars across New York City began creating $1 food menus featuring absurd items so their customers wouldn’t have to break the bank to stay and drink. A few of my favorites are a handful of “Cuomo chips,” and ONE piece of charcuterie meat — chef’s choice of course. Check out more ridiculous menu items that actually exist in a recent article from Vice.
4. Kick it old school
Modern Restaurant Management featured an article this week that talks about the importance of print solutions in today’s hospitality climate. We may think of printed signs as an outdated means of communication but they’re making a comeback in our new normal. From throw away menus to signs alerting customers of mask and social distancing policies, printed marketing tools have never been hotter.
5. Shifting your strategies
The effects of COVID-19 on the restaurant industry have been hard felt. Budget cuts may have tightened or even diminished your marketing allotments, but that doesn’t mean that your marketing efforts should stop altogether. Shifting your strategies to things like customer reviews and word-of-mouth marketing can be both beneficial and cost-effective. Take it from FSR and their recent article, 5 Ways Marketing Can Help the Restaurant Industry Today.
To stay up to date on our latest recommendations for event professionals during this time, click here for our latest blog posts, check out our Two Chicks, Three Seats podcast, and view the recordings of our weekly Social Hour virtual roundtables.