Hospitality businesses have a lot to contend with at the moment, not least staff shortages, supply issues and rising prices, all with the spectre of Covid still looming large over the sector. Such challenges can have a big impact on the customer experience and, with people more willing than ever before to voice their opinions online for everyone to see, this can have wide-reaching ramifications for any restaurant or pub business.
We gathered a group of marketing, communications and social media managers from the restaurant and pub world to discuss how they manage their online reputations, how they cope with the numerous digital channels that interact with them and the weight of reviews and feedback they receive and what they are doing to ensure they stand out from the hospitality pack.
Marie Kinvig: As a result of Covid we had to adapt quite quickly so we started doing delivery and pick up from pubs. We had to create an online ordering system very quickly and change our website and, when everything opened again, we had to install proper online booking systems because not every pub had one. Our online presence shifted dramatically – it was a shift for our customers using their phones to order but it brought a lot of new custom.
Holly Hilton: Having an online presence is incredible as it means you can be everywhere, but it also means somebody has to also be everywhere 24/7 when at 11 pm someone’s messaging you about the menu.