John McDonell
John McDonell

There is an endless list of initiatives – both big and small - that hotels can undertake to promote beverages and increase revenue. I always check out the mini-bar when I check into a hotel. While I’ve noticed the opportunity for Tequila, especially the high end variety, in the mini-bar space as it is often absent, I see a huge opportunity to promote mini-bar consumption at large. Especially in India, where international flights arrive after the restaurants and bars have closed, there is nowhere for the guest to grab a drink and therefore no chance for the hotel to earn beverage revenue upon check-in. A smart move would be identify a visible spot in the room for a noticeable silver tray with half bottles and a glass or two with other ingredients necessary to make a drink and therefore induce consumption. How often is it that one doesn’t need Pringles or M&Ms but grabs a handful of them anyway because they’re sitting outside the mini-bar? If hoteliers are concerned that the guest may not understand that the beverages are chargeable, they can have neck tags.

 


Restaurant and bar promotions are of course, more complex. Hotels should primarily remember that there must be some perceived and recognised value for the customer to attend your promotion in the first place, or at least a reason to have the promotion. So themes work – for instance, in the US, being so close to Mexico, we celebrate Mexican Independence Day to promote Tequila. Here in India, one can promote the drink during summer through Mojitos which are popular as summer drinks. Or for instance, what is more refreshing by the pool than a Margherita?