At the 2011 Eye for Travel Social Media Conference in San Francisco last week, social media and mobile were top of mind. But the real overarching theme was content. Almost every company that was on a panel or presented, spoke about and stressed the importance of good content, especially visual content and video in particular. Here are some of the highlights:
• LonelyPlanet presented that if 2010 was mobile year, 2011 is the year of video backed by some interesting new stats from Forrester. Video is going to be big this year. Right now, one in every five consumers watch travel-related video and that is expected to grow.
• Park City Resort shared what they’re doing and their way of thinking (one that other hotels could benefit from adopting). They believe that “good content = good results” and think of themselves as publishers, not as advertisers.
• TripAdvisor reported that photos and videos are key. Their data shows that consumers spend 150% more time on a hotel details page of a listing that has 20 or more photos.
• Roger Smith Hotel has been given the title of The Social Media Hotel. They start with a story that goes beyond the product and use it to create content that shows who they are and share it online because people use their social networks to find hotel recommendations.
All in all, content, especially video, will play a large role in hotels’ success this year – in social, in mobile, in everything digital.