LiBi is the first travel industry and a new e-commerce platform that connects consumer lifestyle brands with a network of hotels and resorts, enabling guests to buy products they can see, try and interact with on the go, on Click.
It’s about reaching consumers when they’re in a different shopping mentality — what we call “me time” in retail — when they’re spending time really experiencing and enjoying things in a break that they also use for their Return could also see home. LiBi is the eCommerce and storytelling bridge to achieve this.
The recently launched LiBi, which stands for “Love it, Buy It”, therefore serves to create value for hotels, guests and consumer brands by combining rich, immersive product experiences with this instant retail reality.
From mattresses and beds to art and design, food and beverage to consumer technology and even sports and wellness items, guests can purchase virtually every element of their stay.
For example, guests can buy items they like in their hotel room, lodge or cabin, something they saw while eating or drinking or visiting the spa, something they noticed while listening to music or doing yoga. LiBi’s offer aims to give guests the opportunity to buy the objects with which they have formed a relationship, in order to create long-lasting memories, thereby helping to create a connection between travel, product and brand.
QR code access allows guests to browse the selection of items they encountered during a hotel stay. For example, if a guest has the best night’s sleep ever, they can simply scan the appropriate code on the mattress and purchase online.
LiBi’s e-commerce platform means that each hotel partner benefits from their own bespoke page, which acts as a virtual boutique for all shoppable items. Commercial transactions are handled via LiBi’s drop-ship home delivery model, which means hotels and resorts don’t need to hold inventory – items are delivered directly to guests’ homes with no obligation on the hospitality venue.
Some of the first brand partners to sign up include Hypnos (mattresses), Comfort Zone (spa brand), Pulseroll, Edmunds Cocktails, Cotivision and Natural Spa Factory (spa and amenities), as well as other notable local artists and producers.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
We, the co-founders, have been working in travel retail for years and the pandemic has given us the time to think differently about the industry. Having worked in the airport and cruise industries, we saw the synergies and similarities with guest behavior in hotels and resorts. Guests in a vacation-focused retail shop and interact very differently than they do online and on the high street. With longer stays and a relaxed state of mind, we found that guests were open to discovering and exploring their surroundings, with the added benefit of the hotel or resort’s support.
We know that hotels want and need extra income during tough times (especially when it’s not adding to their daily workload), and brands want and need new outlets to build emotional connections with new customers.
My personal experience and frustration stemmed from having stayed in the most amazing hotel and slept perfectly – but not being able to find out about the mattress or how to buy it afterwards shaped the customer journey. In addition to adding value for the hotel itself, the product or the brand, we also wanted to solve a guest problem – and then LiBi was born!
How has the company performed during the pandemic?
We built the business at the start of the pandemic after the cruise and international travel markets were closed. We recognized the staycation trend, but saw that hotels and resorts were also struggling. We wanted to offer hotels, resorts and their guests a solution.
We wanted to generate incremental revenue without the hassle of setting up a physical or online retail channel and without the need for hotel and resort equity investments. We also wanted to achieve an enhanced customer experience through storytelling and a simple, frictionless mobile solution that can be accessed 24/7 via a QR code customized for each hotel.
So we are a pandemic birth, going from zero to introductory, listening and learning from conversations, needs and gaps and what we think can excite all parts of the partner and audience mix. As part of this, the e-commerce idea and platform has integrated even more into the world of storytelling, ensuring that the brands we work with come alive, share their values and backstories and can really engage with it , which matters to consumers as we emerge from the toughest of times.
What can we expect from LiBi in the future?
We aim to engage with a range of hotels, resorts and their guests in innovative, immersive ways, leveraging our strong brand partnerships across a range of categories and products. We want to tell brand stories and fulfill the desire of hotels and resorts to create lasting memories for their valued guests.
LiBi has the ability to showcase brands in a range of experiential ways and to deepen what each one can offer to new customers – distillery visits, winery visits, mixology masterclasses, podcasts and creative value-add elements for each store.
Additionally, there is an opportunity to incorporate more AI and VR technology as we grow and learn from the data and customer behavior patterns. It is an extremely valuable learning opportunity – not only for LiBi’s own developments in the next phase, but also for the level of insight that we can offer our hotel, resort and brand partners.
We see ourselves as trading partners, not only in terms of deal making and sales value, but also in this area of information exchange that has not been collected before.
https://techround.co.uk/interviews/meet-suzanne-mahoney-libi/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=meet-suzanne-mahoney-libi Meet Suzanne Mahoney, co-founder of the digital shopping platform: LiBi