Do you remember when you were young, sitting in front of your TV watching National Geographic and thinking “I wish I could go there one day”? In the 90’s television used to be our window to the world. It showed us things we could not see on a daily basis. Distant places, different people, unknown cultures. Television was telling us stories told by someone, somewhere. And suddenly, here we are, in a XXI century – the era of drones, Vine, Snapchat and Periscope – where we are the ones telling stories.
Working in travel and hospitality industry, it is important to be aware of the importance of high quality content. It is like with online dating – someone who describes themselves as a “tall, slim dark” or a “well-built Indian”, without a photo attached, loses their credibility and can easily turn out to not reach our expectations. Same pattern applies to tourism. People want to see what they buy. They want to see places before they reach them and photos slowly seem to go out of date.
It was proved, people remember 20% of what they saw, 30% of what they heard but even 70% of what they heard and saw at the same time. Use it.
You cannot attract potential clients to buy from you if you are not presenting your product in a way they expect it. Video is a new way to do it. Let us look closer at the growing tools and social media platforms fitting into travel and hospitality industry marketing strategies.
We can start easy. Snapchat or Vine would be a good way to go for someone who has never tried video in their marketing strategy. Snapchat is a mobile application enabling you to record short video snaps and sharing them with people. Snaps disappear after 24 hours, so the tool seems to be perfect for sharing moments with your followers. Documenting a safari trip you organized or featuring daily life at the hotel is what you could do with it. Vine is a similar tool, but its videos do not disappear. Additionally, for your convenience, it is also integrated with Twitter.
Going into more advanced channels, we have Periscope. Periscope is a streaming video mobile app that enables you to go live from anyplace at any time. You are probably wondering how can you use it to market your business? The answer is simple: stream events you organize, places you go to or organize live Q&A sessions with your clients. There are even users streaming Great Migration on it!
Finally, we have drones. It is a toy for those thinking about videos seriously and on a more professional level. Not as easy to use, as every drone has to be registered and licenced first. Once it is done, you will have a never ending possibility of creating wonderful videos from above. Imagine how fantastically your hotel could be presented! .
How many possibilities of showing your city you will have! You will probably need someone to put the video together for you to upload it to YouTube later. But that is not the end. Keeping the video on YouTube will not bring you as many views and will not bring as much engagement as posting it on Facebook. While an average number of interactions on YouTube videos is 605, on Facebook, the same video, gets 2712 interactions (according to Quintly study).
Video is a thing on Instagram as well. In mid-2015, Instagram lengthened their recordings from 15 to 30 seconds, so now you have up to half minute to expose your business in a single post.
It is important to remember, tools mentioned above are not typically sales tools. You will not see its direct influence in your Google Analytics, but you will see something much more important. Your customers’ emotional attachment to your brand. And this is something far more important nowadays. Looking at the biggest social media players, they all have started creating real-time content based on emotions long time ago, and this is the future of online marketing.