Fan-friendly pricing, good or bad?
By: Rachel Wolff, Culinary Strategist, Food Service Matters
Fan-friendly pricing. It sure seems like a good idea, right? Wrong. We’re all for providing fans with the best experience, not price-gauging them, providing higher quality food and beverage, but don’t we think this is the best way to create a first class food and beverage offering.
Why? Offering $2 hot dogs is not the solution. Fans will slam the concession stands offering the cheap food, not only creating crazy lines, but forcing those hot dogs that everyone is clamoring for to be made hours ahead of time, wrapped and kept in hot boxes (where good food goes to die). There goes the a la minute, fresh product fans want and we end up with the same “concessions fare” stadiums were known for 25 years ago. And those not-for-profit groups that stadiums depend on to help staff their concession stands? Those guys now have to work three times harder for the same amount of cash. Is that an incentive? We think not.
There’s a better way. You could argue that you should just give away that food to fans and build it into the price of a ticket. But, since we’re all about the experience, we think there’s another way. With all the beautiful concourses new buildings are offering, encourage fans to try unique items on each visit with pre-loaded tickets (on the owners, of course). Instead of having all your fans vying for the same food, spread out the demand and give fans the opportunity to sample something new (all those local partners you have should also get some love, right?) and keep your staff motivated.
Now, if we can just keep convincing owners to view food and beverage as a fan amenity that will help them sell more top dollar tickets, everyone will win.