By Estefania Escobar, Global PR at Base7booking
Although video advertising for hotels has mixed opinions in the industry, social media, and new technologies are challenging those points of view. Go beyond photos and let’s see how to use this powerful tool to get more bookings and enrich your hotel’s brand online presence.
In a recent post, we dissected the guest experience and understood that consumers always have their phone on their hands to answer any questions, solve any problem, and plan any activity, including traveling. A good example is how 50% of total Youtube viewers are using mobiles to access the platform. As consumers use any screen to consume content, the video should gain a space in your marketing mix in order to have an effective strategy.
Did you know that in 20120 approximately 80% of internet traffic will be driven by video? If you think this is not related to the travel industry, you’re wrong. According to a recent study, two of three U.S consumers watch video travel when they’re thinking about a trip.
Influence guest journeys
Inspiration can come from anywhere. From a conversation to a movie, and once there’s the intention to travel somewhere, travelers will find as much information as they can. For example, around 85% of YouTube travel searches concentrate on destinations, activities, points of interest and general travel ideas. Seasonality is also relevant for videos, as travel search peaks in March, July, and October in YouTube, and Google.com travel searchers are mainly related to brands and purchases.
What’s catching their attention?
As videos are easier to the consumer when compared to written words, it’s a fantastic way to convey key messages in a clear and appealing manner. Connecting to the emotional needs of travelers is essential. Although travelers can be interested in guest-generated content, most watched videos come from brands or professionals. Brands like Disney Parks Resorts, Expedia, and Turkish Airlines are creating compelling stories with success. A great example is Marriot Hotel’s French Kiss, an inspirational story about a traveler’s experiences in Paris.
Where to share?
The first step to include video in your marketing efforts is to choose the platform you want to use to share the content, as each platform has different characteristics and audiences. YouTube leads the top of mind and viewers, with over a billion users watching content on the platform. Hoteliers can upload content for free and it’s up to the video producers to decide length, quality, and other details. Additionally, videos in YouTube can be easily shared in social media and blogs.
Joining the video trend, Facebook recently released Facebook Live, a live stream option for any user, including brand pages. Although it is definitely not as popular as YouTube, approximately 100 hours of content are viewed every day. Hoteliers can share their videos from other platforms, or upload videos directly to Facebook, or create their own live streams. In Facebook, native content tends to perform better and reach higher numbers of people. Other social media platforms include Snapchat and Instagram, where predominant content relates to lifestyle, personal experiences and aspirational content.
As digital video expands and becomes an important source for guest journeys and travelers spend more time than ever watching videos, hoteliers should consider expanding their own marketing strategy to tell stories, enrich their brand, to ultimately inspire and engage with today’s travelers.