Innovative catering and hospitality at RSC Anderlecht
As part of the Stadium Operations Seminar during the ESSMA Summit in Porto, David Steegen and Emmanuel Rutsaert discussed the catering and hospitality offerings at RSC Anderlecht (RSCA).
As the club wants to tackle each aspect, they have mapped out the complete B2B journey and gathered feedback through surveys. By doing so, they could indicate possible problems and attention points to work on. They indicated eight different fields going from sales to VIP welcoming and the entire catering experience. These eight fields compose their Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI), indicating that each aspect plays an equal important role in the B2B journey.
For example, one of the main sources of complaints was linked to parking. To address this problem, the club developed new partnerships to be able to increase parking facilities and raise the level of stewards welcoming people on the parking.
For B2B registration, they work together with ESSMA’s Stadium Partner iXpole and are using their sponsorship and hospitality platform. With iXpole’s solution, guests can easily select and adjust the associated catering options they prefer per match. Tickets can be distributed fast and securely and topping-up the cashless payment cards are also managed via the platform.
Research studies found that people want to have choice, but as with everything you should find the right balance. At RSCA, they have six different VIP seating options and about the same number of catering offerings. Always on the lookout to innovate, they added two new formulas for the 2018/19 season:
- An all-in food market which offers four food stands with each a unique and dedicated theme
- A step-up business pack which gives you a taste of their hospitality experience
Within the different food concepts, the club found it important to keep a strong link with the city of Brussels, inviting famous Brussel’s chefs to cook and showcase their expertise while keeping the link with their city.
The follow-up is at least as important as the previous steps. After each game, RSCA survey their guests on different aspects under the Customer Satisfaction Index with questions such as ‘How was the experience of ordering and downloading tickets?’ and ‘What about the parking accessibility and the catering in general?’. They keep track of the results, so they know where to focus on for the next games and to indicate trends in the long run.
In addition, RSCA signed a partnership with Gault&Millau, one of the biggest food guide and rating providers (similar to Michelin). After every game, Gault&Millau provides an assessment of the food served at hospitality level to ensure a high quality.
- Know your B2B journey, ask for input and indicate possible pitfalls
- Focus on every aspect of the journey and maintain the same standards throughout the complete journey
- Look for the right partnerships to help with B2B registration and follow-up
- Offer enough seat and catering options – based on your own situation – and communicate them clearly
- Differentiate your VIP hospitality, innovative concepts are key
- Survey your guests after each match and track results