Online Travel Videos: The Industry’s New Powerhouse

The information is overwhelming, the content is tedious and the competition is growing exponentially. So how do you effectively make sure your hotel grabs the attention of potential guests and stand out amongst the crowd? By leveraging a marketing powerhouse: video.

A few weeks ago we hosted a webinar with Google as they unveiled their 2014 Traveler Study. One of the biggest trends that emerged in the past 365 days was that video is becoming more prevalent and influential throughout every stage of the travel shopping journey.

80% of hotel bookers now watch online videos to make a decision regarding their accommodations. The idea of incorporating videos into the hotel marketer’s toolbox still seems like a foreign concept to some; however, the numbers keep pouring in and they will certainly sway your perception.

In fact, a new study conducted by Software Advice (an online source for hotel management research) in which they surveyed 2,345 travelers, set out to discover what kinds of travel videos would persuade them to book at one hotel over another.

Where do guests prefer to view videos?

50% of customers prefer to watch videos on the actual website, ensuring they still stay within the branded umbrella of the hotel experience. You can still maximize exposure of your hotel’s travel videos by taking advantage of the video powerhouse YouTube, because they are a not too distant second in terms of preferred reach.

What do guests want to see in hotel videos?
When travelers arrive at your website, they’re actually at a higher level in the decision-making process. This signifies that they are looking for specific details your hotel has to offer in terms of amenities and room specifics. In fact, 68% of shoppers would be most encouraged to book at a hotel after viewing this sort of critical information.

So we now understand that most travelers are narrowing down their choices when they visit your hotel website and they just want to cut to the chase and find out if it’s the right place for them. We can break it down one step further by looking specifically at what types of information and features prospective guests are looking for. 57% of those polled want to see the guest rooms, suites and common areas in hotel videos whereas 20% wish to see supplemental amenities such as the spa, pool or gym. It’s important to keep in mind that the mindset of potential customers will vary, so be mindful of this when diversifying your informational content.

The importance of video has risen in the past few years and it shows no signs of slowing down. “I think the reason travel videos have gained popularity today is due to improved and more accessible technology,” said Taylor Short, Market Research Associate, Software Advice. “As high-definition cameras and editing software become more powerful, easy-to-use and affordable, I believe hotels will find travel videos to be a necessary part of their marketing strategy.”

Videos are a very powerful and underappreciated weapon whose true value has yet to be completely realized. Be cognizant that this is the new digital age where consumers across the spectrum tend to be put off by long videos. Be concise, take into account these statistics when determining how and which of your hotel’s features to highlight, and above all, have some fun with it!

For even more information to help give you a clearer 360 degree perspective on the power of video, download our eBook: Seeing is Believing: Five Steps to Transforming Your Hotel’s Online Presence with Video.

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