Everything You Wanted to Know About Instagram, Snapchat & Vine

The winter season brings along a white blanket hugging the city, picturesque scenery and oodles of bite-sized chocolates and candies entering our everyday purchases. A lot can be learned from this miniature model of goodies. We enjoy its quick, easily digestible format because it still satisfies our overall desire to indulge in the first place.

There could not be a more perfect analogy to describe the micro content doses travel shoppers love to munch on. 2014 was a ground breaking year for content marketing with short-video platforms bursting on the scene.

Major brands are putting serious time and money into incorporating new creative initiatives on how they can be big players in this age of new media. Video sharing for digital marketing purposes is still in its infant stages. However, it’s always better to be an early adapter than a late majority.

Here’s a look at the next wave of bite-sized social players reinventing the way we digest content.

The Big 3: A Brief History of Snackable Video Platforms


  • Acquired by Twitter, initially launched in January 2013
  • 40 million+ users
  • 6 second video length
  • Every second, 9 Tweets that include a Vine video are sent
  • The largest age group among Vine users is 18-20 years old

Vine is a short-form video sharing service. Users can record and edit six-second long looping video clips and publish to Facebook and Twitter. Some of the big boys in the game like Puma, Gap, Volkswagen and eBay have all infiltrated the Vine universe. You can’t promote videos (yet), so brands walk a fine line by paying key influencers on Vine to highlight their product. The going rate for a six-second Vine is anywhere from $5,000 to $30,000, depending on the influencer’s reach and audience.

You can highlight certain aspects of your hotel with short video tours of the property.

Vine is the epitome of snackable content. They created a new way to share video that inspires creativity where you can easily capture motion and sound. However, Vine’s general user base is between 14 and 25 years old, so understandably this demographic might not fit in with every hotel marketing plan, but the powerful presence this vehicle holds signifies that more than a few people are using it.

Six seconds may seem difficult to properly convey your message; however, life is happening NOW! Strike while the iron is hot. It doesn’t matter what will happen with Vine in a few years, this is blowing up now! Given its premise of simplicity, there are so many ways you can have fun with this platform once you inject it into your hotel’s digital plans.


  • Hatched from Facebook. Instagram Video was launched in June 2013
  • 15 second video length
  • 200 million+ monthly users
  • In the first 8 hours of Instagram Video’s existence, more than a year’s worth of video was uploaded
  • Over 90% of people on Instagram are under the age of 35

The Hoxton Hotel in London shows their life through a unique Instagram lens, advertising a new promotion their bar offers.

Instagram broke onto the scene as a platform purely built for mobile to allow users to illustrate their creative take on the world through a variety of different lenses. Utilizing the visual game is important, but now the short video sharing outlet gives consumers a new wave on entertainment through this very compelling medium. In fact, 80% of Millennials say they want brands to entertain them. And you can still take advantage of their 14 filters to customize an unreal look.

Instagram video is a great way to show your brand’s culture, to tell your hotel’s story in a unique way that accentuates its personality by way of rich media. Instagram video gives brands the opportunity to show themselves in an artsy kind of way. Remember, this goes back to the entertainment factor, and you have to offer something enticing to your supporters so they’ll follow and engage with you. Fifteen seconds allows for a longer timeline to tell a micro movie version of your story and establish a greater sense of community.


Snapchat is a photo messaging application that allows users to take photos or record videos and send them to a controlled list of recipients for a set limit of time before they vanish from the device. A recent Comscore report found that Snapchat was the 3rd most popular social app among 18-34-year-olds (behind Facebook and Instagram, but ahead of Twitter, Pinterest, and Vine). The disappearing model might seem like it might actually hinder a brand’s plan, but look at it this way. There is no tangible set of images for consumers to look back on. So a brand is only as good as its last snap.

Sour Patch Kids have fun with their Snapchat model, and enlist top Vine influencers to have fun and promote Sour Patch Kids to connect with people and enable the brand to send them content one-on-one.

Snapchat’s method to unroll their advertising efforts is in the opposite direction of traditional marketing designs. They plan to give advertisers their own space on the app, and users can choose to interact with them or not. This goes back to the entertainment factor with these snackable platforms. A part of the encompassing brand experience means captivating your audience with unique content. Brands are already finding innovative ways to infuse their style into this insanely popular platform.

2 Key Takeaways

There are two common denominators that stand out here among these Big 3. The first is that they all fit the snackable mold for content that is rapidly becoming the new norm for hotel marketers. The other is the young demographics that flood these new media vehicles. Millennials are coming into their own as young professionals, and are starting to build up some capital along with it. They are tech-savvy and love to travel and expand their view of the world.

At a mere glance, it’s perfectly normal to be overwhelmed by the massive surge in popularity of these new social creations. How can your hotel take advantage of them? This is the new world of clever, guerrilla content marketing techniques, and the possibilities are limitless to highlight your hotel in creative styles. You don’t have to fill a 2,000 word quota like it’s a grad paper to get your story across. It can essentially be projected in six-second spurts.

Everyone is a publisher nowadays and hotel marketers have to think of approaches that stretch beyond traditional means for their property to effectively stand out.

To understand the psychology of why these platforms work with the younger demographic, download our free eBook: Let’s Talk Targeting – Volume 1: The Millennial Traveler.

View Comments