This post is inspired by an article I read on HotelMarketing.com titled “TripAdvisor reveals ‘secrets’ for higher visibility on world’s largest travel site”. One of those secrets to higher visibility is the use of visual content – and I could not agree more with the importance of this approach.
TripAdvisor recently conducted a study regarding the impact between the use of rich visual content on hotel pages and the level of traveler engagement received in turn. The results showed not only a correlation, but a strong one between the activity triggered by photo and video content.
In fact, North American properties with at least 30 photos received 41% more engagement than hotels with less than 10 images. As for video, hotels with at least one video had approximately 34% more engagement compared to ones without. In my opinion, this is not surprising or much of a ‘secret’ as we are seeing this behavior across the board, in all industries and across all types of websites.
People have always liked visual stories, and what’s not to like? They’re appealing, engaging and much simpler to emotionally connect with than just plain, old text. The good news for hoteliers is that today it’s easier than ever to share their visual stories through the Internet – whether it is on their own hotel website, 3rd party travel sites or social media.
I recently wrote a post – Visual Content Takes the World by Storm… And Drives Engagement! – focused on the use of visual content within social media, which is seeing similar engagement behaviors. In particular, Facebook and Pinterest have become major platforms for visual storytelling and sharing. As mentioned in my post:
-> On Facebook, videos are shared 12X more than links and text posts combined₁
-> On Facebook, photos are liked 2X more than text updates₂
-> Photo and video posts on Pinterest are referring more traffic than Twitter, StumbleUpon, Linkedin and Google+₃
On the Internet we have moved from text based communication to a world where visual storytelling rules. Hoteliers should keep this in consideration for every aspect of their marketing plans. Whether it is a revamp of their hotel website, optimizing for mobile, or improving their online presence – there is always an opportunity to share your story visually, be sure to take the time to stop and think of how you can accomplish this in everything you do
Visual storytelling is the future of digital and a key element in the success hoteliers will find in extracting more value out of their online marketing. Those who go above and beyond the marketing basics by incorporating their visual story into every aspect of their hotel’s image will reap the rewards of more engagement and ultimately better conversion and more business.
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